Pediatric Pelvic Therapy
Does your child have any of these symptoms?
- Wetting during the day
- Urine leakage with laughing
- Urine leakage with sports or activity
- Frequent urination
- Infrequent urination
- Urinary retention
- Wearing pull ups after the age of 4
- Accidental bowel movements
- Pain with bowel movements
- Straining to complete bowel movement
- Pain in pelvic and/or abdominal area
If you answered 'yes' to any of these symptoms, pelvic therapy may offer solutions.
What is pelvic floor physical therapy?
Pediatric pelvic floor physical therapy (PT) is a specialized therapy that focuses on pelvic conditions and symptoms for children from birth to 17 years. By 4 years of age, 90% of children have gained control over their bowel and bladder and have very few accidents. For the remaining 10%, bowel and bladder issues can present many challenges for the individual and the family. The child often experiences embarrassment and anxiety which can impact friendships, behaviors, and the ability to participate in social events such as sleepovers or sports. If untreated, bowel and bladder dysfunction can persist into adulthood. Pediatric pelvic PT assists in retraining the systems and muscles to work properly to restore order and function.
What is the pelvic floor and why is it important?
The pelvic floor is a group of muscles that are located in the pelvis. These important muscles provided support for the pelvic organs and core and help control urinary and bowel functions. The pelvic floor is like any muscle in the body and can become tight, weak, go into spasm, or have poor muscle coordination. If these muscles are not working properly, those important systems may not be working properly and can result in bowel and bladder issues or pelvic pain.
What to expect: Treatment Sessions
A physical therapist specialized in treating pelvic floor conditions will meet with you and your child during the initial consultation. During the first session, medical history, symptoms, and goals will be discussed. The consultation may include examination of your child's strength, range of motion, muscle flexibility, posture, movement patterns, and pelvic and core stability. If needed, an external non-invasive examination of the pelvic floor muscle will be completed to assess function of the pelvic muscles.The information gathered will help determine what treatment interventions to include in the plan to get your child better.
Treatments are one-on-one and individualized to focus on the child and family concerns to improve quality of life.
- 20% of pediatrician visits are for incontinence problems
- 15% of visits to gastrointestinal doctors are for lower bowel dysfunction
- Bedwetting affects 5-7 million children in the US
- Bedwetting affects 15% of girls and 22% of boys over the age of 6
- Junior high and high school athletes often experience involuntary leakage during sport
- These issues don't have to be ignored!
Be your child's advocate! If you would like to receive treatment for your child's pelvic floor symptom, ask your provider for a referral to pediatric pelvic floor physical therapy.