According to the Brazilian Society of Urology, more than 40% of Brazilian women may suffer from urine leakage disorder.
From 2021, with the easing of the pandemic restriction measures, many people have resumed physical activities, whether in the gym or outdoors. However, research into pelvic muscle strengthening continues to be an understudied topic, if not overlooked by many. Although traditional physical therapy is known for the benefits it offers, physical therapists warn to pay special attention to the specialty that preserves and treats the pelvic floor.
With primary functions of supporting the abdominal and pelvic organs and maintaining urinary and fecal continence, the entire pelvic floor requires preventive care also with regard to the health of pregnant women. According to the physiotherapist and head of the school clinic of UNINASSAU Teresina, Redenção campus, Marília Santos, pelvic physiotherapy is an ally for women, especially during pregnancy and the elderly. “As the baby grows in the mother’s womb, the entire musculature of the pregnant woman’s pelvis is overloaded, causing pressure on the bladder. This is where pelvic physiotherapy comes in, as a professional will teach you exercises to strengthen and prevent the organ from falling, as well as incontinence and the largest laceration of the region during normal childbirth. Additionally, during menopause there is a reduction in hormones, which decreases muscle tone, increasing the possibility of incontinence. Therefore, pelvic physiotherapy is also welcome at this stage,” says Marília.
According to the Brazilian Society of Urology (SBU), urinary incontinence affects 45% of women and 15% of men over the age of 40. Also according to physiotherapist Marília Santos, aging can be one of the factors in the development of the disease, due to the loss of collagen, leaving the support of the bladder and urethra more fragile, especially in women. She also warns of the importance of preventive care. “Indeed, urinary incontinence in the elderly can be the consequence of a poorly maintained pelvis during youth, especially in the event of several natural births. So, the sooner you start follow-ups, the better the immediate results will be. But the duration of treatment will depend on individual physiological needs and responses. And, without a doubt, it is the follow-up with specialized professionals that will make the difference,” concludes Marília.