When a child struggles to control their bowel or bladder, it can be an emotionally stressful and challenging experience for the entire family. This is especially true for the child. As a parent, it is really challenging to understand the dysfunction, and it is frustrating to feel helpless in the face of the situation. Children are frequently left with feelings of embarrassment and shame, resulting in changes in behaviors.
The condition known as pelvic floor dysfunction affects millions of children, many of whom do not receive the appropriate treatment. The non-invasive approach known as pediatric pelvic floor therapy can be beneficial in assisting your child in regaining control of their bowel and bladder function and fostering greater independence. These conditions can have painful and debilitating effects, but there are pelvic floor specialists who offer varied treatment techniques and modalities that can help manage these effects and help patients overcome them.
Knowing More About Pediatric Pelvic Floor Therapy
Pediatric pelvic floor therapy is a specialized form of treatment that puts the focus on pelvic conditions and symptoms in children between the ages of 0 to 17 years old. Ninety percent of children have taken control over their bladder and bowel by the time they are 4 years old, and they have very few accidents as a result. For the remaining 10 percent, having issues with their bowels or bladders can present a number of difficulties for both the individual and their family. The child will commonly encounter humiliation and anxiety, which can negatively impact their ability to form friendships, behave appropriately, and participate in social activities such as slumber parties or sports. Bowel and bladder dysfunction can continue into adulthood if the condition is not treated. Pediatric pelvic floor therapy for pelvic health helps children retrain their systems and muscles to function correctly, which in turn restores order and function in the body.
Pelvic floor: The Importance
A collection of muscles that can be found in the pelvis are referred to as the pelvic floor. These vital muscles help control functions of the urinary tract and bowels and provide support for the pelvic organs and the core. Just like any other muscle in the body, the muscle that makes up the pelvic floor can become contracted, go into spasm, weak, or have poor muscle coordination. It is possible that these important systems will not function properly if these muscles are not functioning normally, which can lead to problems with the bowels and the bladder as well as pelvic pain.
Common Medical Issues And Their Respective Diagnoses
The term "pediatric pelvic floor dysfunction" refers to a wide variety of issues that can manifest themselves when the muscles are either too tight, too spastic, or both. Muscle issues can result in bowel and bladder leakage, incontinence during the day or night, bedwetting, or dysfunctional elimination. The following medical conditions frequently involve dysfunction of the pelvic floor:
• Encopresis or Bowel incontinence and/or Inability to empty bowel
• Chronic Constipation
• Enuresis or Urinary Incontinence
• Fecal Urgency/Frequency
• Excessive Gas, Abdominal Bloating
• Urinary Retention
• Urinary Frequency/Urgency
• Painful Urination or Defecation
• Vesicoureteral Reflux
Pediatric Pelvic Floor Therapy: Getting Started
Each patient receives individualized care that is tailored to their specific requirements, and the therapy may incorporate a number of different specialized approaches. Before beginning treatment, it is strongly suggested that you have your doctor perform a comprehensive exam to rule out the possibility of any other underlying medical conditions. It is recommended to make an appointment with a pediatric pelvic health specialist in order to undergo pediatric pelvic health floor therapy if this course of treatment is deemed necessary.
What To Expect During Treatment Sessions
What happens during a session of pediatric pelvic floor therapy?
Your child's session will take place in a private room so they can fully focus without distraction. Every treatment requires that a parent or another caregiver who the parent has authorized to care for the child be present during the evaluation and treatment of the child.
During the initial consultation, you and your child will meet with a physical therapist who specializes in treating conditions that affect the pelvic floor. The initial session will discuss the patient's medical history, clinical manifestations, and treatment objectives. Your child's muscle strength, muscle flexibility, range of motion, body posture, patterns of movement, and pelvic and core strength may all be evaluated during the consultation. In order to evaluate the functionality of the pelvic muscles, an external, non-invasive assessment of the pelvic floor muscle may be performed if it is deemed necessary. The information that is collected will be used to assist in deciding which treatment interventions should be included in the plan to help get your child better.
Treatments are provided on a case-by-case basis and tailored to the needs of the child and their family to enhance the child's quality of life.
The duration of the session will be approximately 45 to 60 minutes. External stickers (leads) will be placed on your child's abdomen and perianal areas by a physical therapist (the area around the anus). The stickers or leads are then linked to a computer system, which produces visual output while your child plays video games.
The term "biofeedback," which refers to information about the response of the body, is frequently used to refer to the visual output. Your child will be able to exercise and relax the muscles in their pelvic floor with the help of the learning modules that are included in these video games. This will assist in the development of better toileting habits. During the course of the session, your child will also participate in exercises designed to improve balance, posture, and relaxation.
Do I need a referral?
The practice of directly seeing a physical therapist without first obtaining a referral is permitted in many states and is referred to as "direct access." However, in order for some insurance companies to pay for your treatment, they require you to have a referral.
Take up the cause of your child! In order to receive treatment for the pelvic floor symptom that your child is experiencing, you should inquire about obtaining a referral for pediatric pelvic floor physical therapy from your child's provider.