PRE AND POST-NATAL PHYSICAL THERAPY

Pregnancy can be very strenuous on the body, and can cause pain almost anywhere.  It can create pain in the back, hips, neck, ribcage and pelvis.  Pregnancy can also cause a number of conditions including:

Pain linked to pregnancy can be treated, managed, and alleviated with physical therapy.  Some treatments your therapist may try with you are:

  • Postural training: Improper posture can lead to pain and discomfort, especially with the extra load a baby can create on the body.  With instruction from your physical therapist, you will learn how to correct your posture to help alleviate your pain.

  • Education: Your physical therapist will educate you on proper posture, form, and body mechanics so that you will learn to move in ways that do not cause pain and prevent injury, and to avoid movements that will further your injury.

  • Stretching: Your physical therapist will use manual therapy to stretch tight musculature that can be limiting your movement or causing you pain.  They will also teach you ways to safely and properly stretch your muscles on your own at home.

  • Bracing: Bracing can help accelerate the healing process by preventing unwanted movements that will further injure you, and reduces the risk of re-injury while still allowing for normal movements wherever possible.

  • Deep tissue massage, myofascial release, and other soft tissue mobilization: These types of techniques are used to break up adhesions, or knots, in the soft tissue that can be limiting your movement.  They can increase your range of motion by lengthening muscles and tendons.  These techniques can also increase circulation in areas where tight tissue may be causing blood flow to be restricted, and encourage fluid drainage reducing swelling.

  • Therapeutic exercise: Your therapist will work with you and tailor an exercise program specifically for you and your needs.  Therapeutic exercise can reduce pain and improve muscular strength, balance and range of motion.  The goals of exercise are to see improvement in strength, function, balance, and gait (walking).

 

POST BREAST SURGERY PHYSICAL THERAPY

Physical Therapy for Women is dedicated to enhancing the health of women.  One common complaint from this population is pelvic pain.  Our physical therapists address a diverse range of women's needs including post breast surgery therapy.  A physical therapy post surgery can aid in the overall recovery process by focussing on regaining strength and increasing the range of motion in your shoulder and arm.  Treatment options your physical therapist will explore with you are:

  •  Education: Your physical therapist will educate you on positions/movements to avoid that will cause pain.  They will also teach you how to stretch your muscles properly, and how to exercise with the correct posture and form.  

  • Lymphedema Treatment

  • Therapeutic Exercise: Your therapist will provide you with an in-clinic exercise program and an at-home exercise program to focus on strengthening weak musculature.

  • Manual Therapy: Your therapist will use massage techniques to break up scar tissue and adhesions, and manual movement techniques to mobilize your tissues and joints in order to gain mobility back.  

 

PHYSICAL THERAPY FOR DIASTASIS RECTI

Diastasis Recti is an injury that typically occurs during or following pregnancy, however, there can be many other causes.  Something as simple as lifting something too heavy and incorrectly can cause enough intra-abdominal pressure to tear the muscles.  Diastasis Recti is a partial or complete separation of the two sides of your abdominal muscles (six pack), called the rectus abdominis, at the midline of your stomach.  It occurs because the uterus stretches the muscles in the abdomen causing them to separate.  It can also occur because there is an excessive amount of intra-abdominal pressure caused by muscles interacting with the organs inside your abdominal cavity.  You may notice a bulge or ridge down the center of your stomach or around your belly button.  Symptoms may include:

  • Visible separation of the muscles

  • Bloating

  • Constipation

  • Poor posture

  • Low back, pelvic or hip pain

  • Feelings of “flabbiness” in the abdominal muscles

  • Feeling of weakness in the abdominal area

  • Pain with sex

Your physical therapist will work with you to create a treatment plan specific to you and your needs.  Some treatment options they may try with you are:

  • Postural Training: This is one of the most important steps in treatment for this condition.  Your physical therapist will help you learn how to stabilize your core without overusing your muscles.

  • Stretching: when certain muscles become weak or overstretched, other muscles may become overactive and tight.  Your physical therapist will work with you using manual techniques to gently stretch the tight musculature, and will teach you ways to safely stretch those muscles.

  • Therapeutic exercises: Your therapist will provide you with an exercise program that is specific to you.  It will contain exercises that will improve the strength of those weak and overstretched muscles.  This will help improve our pain and increase your function, balance and gait.

  • Bracing: Bracing or taping of the low back and abdominal region can provide you with support in the early stages of rehabilitation.  It will prevent unwanted movements that may further your injury, and will teach you the proper posture needed to avoid re-injury down the road.

  • Education:  Your physical therapist will help you understand your condition and teach you ways to avoid movements, postures or positions that create pain.  For example, they will show you how to comfortably hold or pick up your child, or show you how to sit up from laying down without putting too much strain on your torn abdominal muscles.

 

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