Your first women's health physiotherapy appointment will usually last for around an hour. We recommend that you wear comfortable clothing that you can move easily in (and isn't difficult to remove if needed), as well as bringing a water bottle to stay hydrated, as well as any information that might be helpful - previous scans or imaging, or a list of medications and supplements if applicable.
During your first women's health physiotherapy appointment, our team will take a comprehensive history in order to understand your current symptoms, as well as any factors that may be contributing to them. Questions about your toileting, sexual health, symptoms and any other aches or pains are super important here even though that might feel very personal. Although it might feel embarrassing to answer some of these, our friendly physios can reassure you that there's not much we haven't heard before. Women's health problems are surprisingly common and we love being able to help. Everything you say is completely confidential, and our women's health physiotherapists are warm, friendly and reassuring.
Your physiotherapist will also perform a physical examination, which may include an internal pelvic examination (though certainly doesn't have to) with your consent. This information will help us to develop a personalised treatment plan that is tailored to your specific needs. The physio may feel your abdominal muscles and around your hip bones, and may ask you to perform different movements or contract and relax different muscles or muscle groups.
Often when looking at women's health strengthening of muscles is a key priority. This might be because the muscles have become stretched and weakened from pregnancy and childbirth, or because they are not firing correctly and need 're-education'. The types of exercises that are prescribed will depend on your specific situation but may include pelvic floor muscle contractions/relaxations (Kegels), abdominal exercises, bridges, squats or other lower limb strengthening.
Other treatment may be hands on. This might include education about how to perform self-manual therapies at home, or specific treatments such as pelvic floor muscle release techniques or myofascial release. Think of it as a very specific massage - not always pleasant, but great at easing pain and symptoms.
At the end of your appointment, you will usually be given a home exercise program to follow and advice on other lifestyle modifications that may help (for example, avoiding high impact activities if you have a prolapse). Here at Articulate you might get a link with videos to view at home, or a hand written list depending on what you need. You are always welcome to reach out once you get home if any of it doesn't make sense, and your physio can help to explain anything needed!
We understand that women's health problems can be confronting and often women feel like they have no one to talk to who will understand - we truly hope to change that for you. Our women's health physiotherapists are here to help you through every step of your journey back to optimal health. Our goal is always to provide you with the highest quality of care and to help you reach your health goals. If you have any questions or concerns about what to expect during your women's health physiotherapy appointment, please do not hesitate to contact us on 07 3706 3407 or email email@example.com. We would be happy to chat with you and answer any questions you may have.