A holistic and whole body approach Integrating education, nutrition, mindfulness, restorative time, movement strategies, breathing optimisation, stress management, soft tissue and manual therapy techniques and lifestyle choices is key when it comes to managing pelvic pain.
Here is a list of some of the pelvic pain conditions we regularly manage in clinic
- Persistent pelvic pain
- Dyspareunia (painful intercourse)
- Pudendal neuralgia
- Bladder pain syndrome (BPS) also know as Interstitial Cystitis (IC)
- Hyper-recruited / hyper-tonic pelvic floors
Persistent pain means any pain that goes on for longer than would be expected after an injury or illness.
The definition of pain is:
“An unpleasant sensory AND emotional experience associated with, or resembling that associated with, actual or potential tissue damage”
What’s clear from this definition is that pain is not just a sensory experience it’s emotional too. When a patient comes to see me with an injury or a pain somewhere in the body, I need to not only assess the area but also consider the emotional components that may be at play too, this is particularly relevant with persistent pain. The reason we need to treat persistent pain a little differently to acute pain is that persistent pain is emotionally driven.
The brain decides whether or not we feel pain, it decides the nature and intensity of the pain and it evaluates the need to experience pain against a backdrop of multiple factors. Pain does not provide us with accurate information on the state of the tissue injury. For example with endometriosis which can cause pelvic pain there is no correlation between the degree of endometriosis and the pain experienced.
Pain is a protective output from the brain, these outputs are designed to get our attention – Pain is a call to action. However when we get an inappropriate response it can be due to an overprotective nervous system which needs calming down.
Patients who have persistent pain can often be told the pain must be in their head as the injury should have healed BUT it’s important to understand all pain is real.
Learning about pain is therapy. When you understand why you hurt, you hurt less and pain education can play a huge role in your recovery.