While pelvic health is often associated with women, it is also extremely important for men. The pelvis balances the spine, protects the internal organs and supports the torso. It also helps stabilize and provide balance to the entire body, as well as circulate blood and lymph fluid.
The pelvic floor is a group of muscles that extend from the front and back of the pelvis. It is crucial to daily functions, specifically when going to the bathroom. For men, their pelvic floor muscles support their bladder and bowel and control urine passing through the urethra. When the pelvic floor is stretched, compromised or damaged — due to events like surgery or radiation treatment — its functions can be limited. Therefore, it can be vital for men to keep their pelvic floor muscles strong.
Pelvic floor therapy can not only help men treat pelvic floor complications like dysfunction, but it can also help them prevent dysfunction from happening in the first place.
What is pelvic floor dysfunction and how can it affect men?
Pelvic inflammation can cause the pelvic floor muscles to remain in a tightened state, leading to frequent pain and muscle spasms. Involuntary pelvic floor tightening, or pelvic floor dysfunction, can lead to uncomfortable and painful symptoms like:
- Difficulty starting urine stream.
- High urinary frequency, especially at night.
- Weak urine flow.
- Pain when sitting.
- Pain during and/or after a bowel movement or urination.
- Erectile dysfunction.
The symptoms of pelvic floor dysfunction can greatly affect the quality of life in men and make normal activities difficult. One cause of pelvic floor dysfunction can be prostatitis, or the inflammation of the prostate gland. It can also be caused by:
- Bacterial infection.
- Prolonged sitting.
- Trauma to the pelvis.
If your pelvic pain develops suddenly or is sharp and severe, it is important to seek medical attention immediately. You should also seek medical attention if your symptoms include:
- Difficulty standing.
- Blood in urine.
Why should men consider pelvic floor therapy?
Pelvic floor therapy can strengthen your pelvic floor, reducing your symptoms and boosting your recovery. Therapy can be especially crucial because the pelvic floor is so central to our sense of well-being. Losing control of your bladder or bowel movements can be embarrassing and anxiety inducing, affecting your emotional as well as physical health. Therefore, maintaining its muscles through stretches and exercises can help prevent discomfort in the future. Even if you aren’t currently experiencing pelvic pain, pelvic floor therapy can help you maintain your health and reduce your likelihood of developing pelvic floor dysfunction as you get older.
Pelvic floor exercises are clinically proven to decrease pelvic floor dysfunction symptoms like incontinence. While these exercises are most commonly talked about in association with women, they are just as important in men.
How can physical therapists help your pelvic floor?
Physical therapists can guide you in pelvic floor exercises that are tailored to your symptoms. Your physical therapist may recommend Kegel exercises, which specifically support your bladder and help you control when you go.
To do Kegel exercises, you should focus on tightening your pelvic floor muscles and hold the contraction for three seconds. Then, relax for three seconds and repeat. You can do Kegel exercises while standing, sitting or walking. Your physical therapist can walk you through Kegel exercises and help you target your pelvic floor muscles. In addition, they can help you strengthen the muscles around your pelvis in order to further support your pelvic floor.
Physical therapists can work with you in one-on-one sessions to answer your questions and address your concerns. They can also recommend stretches and exercises that you can repeat at home. Practicing at-home exercises can help you quickly regain control of your pelvic floor and your sense of well-being.
Alliance PTP is ready to help you find top-notch PT for pelvic floor therapy for men
Are you looking for pelvic floor therapy to boost your health? Look no further. At Alliance Physical Therapy Partners, we’re proudly bringing together physical therapy practices across the country to help people get the high-quality PT they need. Want to see a physical therapist in person? We can put you in touch with an Alliance PTP partner that’s close to you and that can help you pursue pelvic floor therapy.
Not keen on in-person PT sessions or not close to an Alliance PTP partner? No worries. We also offer effective and affordable virtual physical therapy through our Agile Virtual Physical Therapy platform.
Come find a physical therapist who can help you get the pelvic floor therapy you need.