pelvicPT

Improve Your Sex Life With PelvicHealth Physical Therapy

Sexual function is multifactorial, but there is a large component of intimacy that does involve the musculoskeletal system. The pelvic floor musculature plays a role in sexual function. Pelvic health physical therapists specialize in evaluating these muscles, their strength, and coordination. We ask all the typically too personal questions in order to best help our patients have a pain free, satisfying sex life. This article is focusing on female sexual function, but the pelvic floor obviously has a role in male sexual health as well (we can help with that as well!).

For any vaginal penetration to occur whether, with a device or genitals, it passes through pelvic floor musculature. When these muscles are very tight and unable to relax it can cause difficulty with the mechanics of penetration. These issues can occur because of trauma, surgery, childbirth, radiation/ cancer treatment, or endometriosis. Sometimes pain with sex can occur for unknown reasons even in young women. This is a more common problem than the general population is aware of, but because discussion about sexual dysfunction is so taboo it is not very well known.

The brain and pelvic floor have a very strong association. Therefore, women who report pain with sex might tighten or contract the pelvic floor muscles with just the thought of sexual activity because of the pain association. Some people have pelvic floor muscle spasms that occur as well, which is usually involuntary. The libido or sex drive is usually low in people with these issues because sex has a negative pain association. It can be very stressful because they desire to have the bonding of intimacy with their partner. We often hear our patients say they don’t feel “like a full woman” or they feel “broken.”

One method we use is to educate our patients on how to connect to their pelvic floor muscles. It is important that they can both voluntarily contract and relax these muscles. There are various strategies we use to assist in this process such as using breathing techniques. Many women are very disconnected from this area and need to develop the coordination for healthy sexual function.

The brain and pelvic floor have a very strong association. Therefore, women who report pain with sex might tighten or contract the pelvic floor muscles with just the thought of sexual activity because of the pain association. Some people have pelvic floor muscle spasms that occur as well, which is usually involuntary. The libido or sex drive is usually low in people with these issues because sex has a negative pain association. It can be very stressful because they desire to have the bonding of intimacy with their partner. We often hear our patients say they don’t feel “like a full woman” or they feel “broken.”

One method we use is to educate our patients on how to connect to their pelvic floor muscles. It is important that they can both voluntarily contract and relax these muscles. There are various strategies we use to assist in this process such as using breathing techniques. Many women are very disconnected from this area and need to develop the coordination for healthy sexual function.

Pelvic Health PT
Perineal body tears and grades

Manual therapy techniques to help the muscles relax or mobilize scar tissue vaginally are another treatment modality that we use. In addition, we evaluate the soft tissue, fascia, and organ mobility in the pelvic region. For example, one cause of pain with deep penetration during intercourse can be cervix and uterine mobility restriction. Additionally, we look at the body holistically and suggest stretches and exercise that can help. We even discuss stress management concepts.

Finally, sexual pleasure that accompanies an orgasm involves involuntary contractions of the pelvic floor musculature. This can be difficult to achieve if the muscles are too tight or too weak. By restoring proper muscle length and function, this can assist in helping women regain the ability to have the pleasurable sexual function they deserve. If you or someone you know is having any issues with sexual function, we are here to help. No topic is TMI (too much information) for us and we want to help you have the best quality sex life as possible. We will respect you and do our best to make these uncomfortable topics easier to discuss because it is our area of expertise.

Mandy GWP

DR. MANDY ROSCOWDPT

Pelvic Health Physical Therapist

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Dr Rachel Peck

DR. RACHEL PECKDPT

Pelvic Health Physical Therapist

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