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Heather and her staff blog about male and female chronic pelvic pain, prostatitis, incontinence, upcoming events and more

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Did you know that riding a bike that doesn’t fit your body can cause and exacerbate nerve and orthopedic problems? Avoid nerve, muscle and joint pain with the following tips!

Before We Begin: Ask for Help

If you are spinning at a gym or in a class, ask for assistance from cycling instructors if you need help setting up your bike. Everyone needs help doing this when they begin, so don't be shy!

If you are cycling at home, come see us at the clinic or have us come out to your house! Clinic owner Heather Jeffcoat, DPT does custom fit assessments in our Sherman Oaks office using the Peloton, and travels in the greater Los Angeles area.

Where is your tush?

Before you sit on the bike, know where you should be sitting!

Your sitting bones should be seated on the back (widest part) of your bike saddle. Sitting correctly on the bike will be one of the most important factors to keeping you from developing orthopedic or nerve issues.

Read more: Ready, Set, Cycle: How to fit your Bike Correctly

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How to prevent back pain for your child

With the school year upon us, kids everywhere are settling into their routines including schlepping items from home to school and extracurricular activities.

Heavy backpacks can lead to back and shoulder pain, injuries, and soreness. Here are a few tips to stay healthy when using a backpack.

Symptoms to watch for:

Carrying a backpack that is too heavy for you can lead to back pain, spinal injuries down the road, as well as an injury to the brachial plexus, the nerve network that goes down the front of the neck and shoulder to your arms, hands, and fingers.

Here are some symptoms to watch out for:

  • Back Pain
  • Numbness, tingling, prickling, or burning sensations in the shoulders, arms, or hands.
  • Weakness in the shoulders, arms, or hands.
  • Pain in the arms, hands, forearms, or shoulders
  • Pain that radiates down the arm
  • Neck and shoulder pain

Read more: Back to School Series: Bookbags and Back aches

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Childhood Constipation and how Pelvic Floor Therapy Can Help

Does your kiddo have a hard time passing bowel movements?

If the answer is yes, you are not alone. According to (Mugie et al. (2011) up to about 30% of children experience constipation. In fact, kids admitted to the emergency room with abdominal pain are most often diagnosed with constipation (Caperell, Pitetti, & Cross, 2013).

Kids who don’t get treatment for their constipation may start falling into muscle holding patterns that persist into adulthood. This means that childhood constipation problems may lead to adult constipation and other pelvic floor issues.

Read more: Back to School Series: Pediatrics and the Pelvic Floor

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While occasional daytime and nighttime accidents (bowel and urine) are a normal part of younger childhood, kids can experience problematic urinary incontinence and pelvic floor dysfunction just like adults.

In this article we will discuss the signs of an underlying pelvic floor dysfunction in children and how pelvic floor therapy can help.

When is it a problem?

Occasional daytime and nighttime accidents are a normal part of growing up. However, if accidents are interfering with a kid’s social engagement, progress in school, or their self-image, then you may consider seeking extra help from a pediatric urologist or pelvic floor therapist.

Signs and Symptoms of Pediatric Incontinence or Pelvic Floor Dysfunction

  • Leaks urine or bowel with laughter (giggle incontinence), coughing, or exercise (jumping on a trampoline, sprinting, etc.)
  • Frequent urination and frequent urge to urinate
  • Chronic constipation or diarrhea
  • Chronic urinary tract infection (UTI)
  • Daytime wetting that interferes with school, social engagement, or self image
  • Nighttime wetting that interferes with sleep, hygiene, or self image
  • Inability to fully void urine or evacuate bowel on the toilet

Read more: Pediatric Incontinence and Pelvic Floor Dysfunction

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Part 2 of 2 of our Prostatitis Lifestyle Management Series

An article published in the Journal of Prostate Cancer and Prostatic Disease (Gallo, L. (2014).) outlines evidence-based recommendations to treat prostatitis related chronic pelvic pain syndrome (CPPS) in men. These recommendations were well tolerated by clients and showed statistically significant reduction in symptoms caused by prostatitis and CPPS.  Today we will cover lifestyle and sexual habits that can help relieve pelvic pain.

Prostatitis and Male Pelvic Pain

Chronic prostatitis, nonbacterial prostatitis, and chronic pelvic pain are all related conditions which negatively affect quality of life for the men who suffer from them. Symptoms vary, but are often described as a “headache in the pelvis” with pain symptoms affecting urinary and sexual function. The pain is real and their negative affects on quality of life are real as well.  The pain caused by nonbacterial prostatitis can be disabling, preventing participation in valued activities and causing isolation and depression.

According to Harvard Medical School, prostatitis accounts for about 1.8 million visits to the doctor’s office in the United States each year. Between 9% to 16% of men of all ages experience prostatitis. About 90% of these instances cannot be tied to an active bacterial infection. Prostatitis affects men of all ages, unlike benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) and prostate cancer, which predominantly affect older men.

Read more: Evidence-Based Recommendations for Managing Prostatitis Related Pelvic Pain: Healthy Sex and...

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Part 1 of 2 of our Prostatitis Lifestyle Management Series

An article published in the Journal of Prostate Cancer and Prostatic Disease outlines evidence-based recommendations to treat prostatitis related chronic pelvic pain syndrome (CPPS) in men (Gallo, L., 2014). These recommendations were well tolerated by clients and showed statistically significant reduction in symptoms caused by prostatitis and CPPS.  Today we will cover dietary and toileting habits which can help relieve pelvic pain.

Prostatitis and Male Pelvic Pain

Chronic prostatitis, nonbacterial prostatitis, and chronic pelvic pain are all related conditions which negatively affect quality of life for the men who suffer from them. Symptoms vary, but are often described as a “headache in the pelvis” with pain symptoms affecting urinary and sexual function. The pain is real and their negative affects on quality of life are real as well.  The pain caused by nonbacterial prostatitis can be disabling, preventing participation in valued activities and causing isolation and depression.

According to Harvard Medical School, prostatitis accounts for about 1.8 million visits to the doctor’s office in the United States each year. Between 9% to 16% of men of all ages experience prostatitis. About 90% of these instances cannot be tied to an active bacterial infection. Prostatitis affects men of all ages, unlike benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) and prostate cancer, which predominantly affect older men.

Read more: Evidence-Based Recommendations for Managing Prostatitis Related Pelvic Pain

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What is Yoga?

Yoga is a form of exercise that utilizes movement for strength and flexibility, along with breathwork and mindfulness for reduction of stress and tension. Yoga has long been used therapeutically for a variety of neuromuscular, immunological, psychological, and pain disorders. It has also been linked to improvements in body awareness, improved cognition, flexibility and strength, as well as physiology (reducing stress hormones, improving cardiac function) (Schmalzl et al, 2015).

Prostatitis and Male Pelvic Pain

Chronic prostatitis, nonbacterial prostatitis, and chronic pelvic pain are all related conditions which negatively affect quality of life for the men who suffer from them. Symptoms vary, but are often described as a “headache in the pelvis” with pain symptoms affecting urinary and sexual function. The pain is real and their negative affects on quality of life are real as well.  The pain caused by nonbacterial prostatitis can be disabling, preventing participation in valued activities and causing isolation and depression.
According to Harvard Medical School, prostatitis accounts for about 1.8 million visits to the doctor’s office in the United States each year. Between 9% to 16% of men of all ages experience prostatitis. About 90% of these instances cannot be tied to an active bacterial infection. Prostatitis affects men of all ages, unlike benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) and prostate cancer, which predominantly affect older men.

Yoga, Pelvic Floor Dysfunction, and Chronic Pain

Yoga can help both strengthen and increase flexibility of the pelvic floor muscles and surrounding musculature to better function and treat issues such as pain with urination, pain with ejaculation, and pain with bowel movements.

Read more: Yoga Therapy to Ease Prostatitis and Chronic Pelvic Pain

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This article will review how prostatitis can cause or contribute to chronic pelvic pain and what pelvic floor therapy can do to help alleviate it.

The Condition

Chronic nonbacterial prostatitis is sometimes described as a “headache in the pelvis” with pain symptoms affecting urinary and sexual function. It’s a tricky condition because as “nonbacterial” suggests, the pain and inflammation is not tied to a known bacterial infection, which can confuse both the patient as well as their healthcare providers. Yet, the pain is real and their negative affects on quality of life are real as well.  The pain caused by nonbacterial prostatitis can be disabling, preventing participation in valued activities and causing isolation and depression.

Prevalence

According to Harvard Medical School, prostatitis accounts for about 1.8 million visits to the doctor’s office in the United States each year. Between 9% to 16% of men of all ages experience prostatitis.

Read more: Nonbacterial Prostatitis: Chronic Pelvic Pain in Men

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Happy Pride Month! Fusion Wellness & Physical Therapy is proud to be a supportive and inclusive orthopaedic and pelvic health center. Earlier this month, I attended the first ever PT-specific course for LGBTQ care in the US, with an emphasis on transgender care. The course covered many topics, notably pre-operative, intra-operative and postoperative recovery guidelines. While this is the second course I have taken on transgender care (with a third coming up in a few months), it was the first that was held primarily for the benefit of training physical therapists.

Read more: Transgender Pelvic Health and Orthopaedic Services at Fusion Wellness PT

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Girls Night Out: Better Sexual and Pelvic Health

Date:
Sunday, November 5, 2017

Time:
6:30-9:30PM

Venue:
The Rendition Room @ Vitello's
4349 Tujunga Ave., Studio City, CA 91604

Drinks and appetizers will be provided!

Read more: Girls Night Out: Better Sexual and Pelvic Health

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Most people experience occassional constipation. Constipation isn’t just the inability to have a bowel movement, and includes the difficulty associated with bowel movements. Travel, inactivity, illness, and certain over the counter medications taken “as needed” commonly result in short-term or acute constipation. Constipation lasting longer than three months is considered chronic constipation. Chronic constipation should be treated by a doctor to prevent health complications. 

Chronic Constipation: Are you and your healthcare practitioner talking about the same thing? 

Clear communication is essential to working with doctors, but the general public often has only a rudimentary understanding of medical terms - including constipation. There is often a gap between the physician and the patient’s perception of constipation which can lead to confusion. (1, 2, 7, 10) A study of people who thought they had constipation showed that only a third actually fit the criteria for constipation, while the rest actually had Irritable Bowel Syndrome or other gastrointestinal disorders. (9) So what are the criteria for constipation? 

Read more: Chronic Constipation 101

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Pelvic floor physical therapy is one of the best kept secrets in medicine.

Recently, I was on a plane flight and sat next to two women. They were very chatty with one another and quickly swept me up into their conversation. Inevitably, in situations like this, everyone asks “So what do you do for a living?”. My answer always used to be “I’m a physical therapist”. The past couple of years, however, my standard response is “I’m a physical therapist, but let me tell you about what kind of physical therapist I am”. Then I go into the diagnoses I treat related to bowel, bladder and sexual health and, in general, how I treat them. Across the board, their reaction is a mix of astonishment and genuine interest. The follow up dialogue is always eye-opening for them, and more often than not, they will report either knowing someone close to them as having one of these pelvic floor issues, or they have it themselves.

Read more: What’s Up Down There, Doc? 

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