Webinar Recap: Get to Know Your Pelvic Floor

How well do you know your pelvic floor and the important role it plays in your overall health and wellness? Find out what our pelvic floor experts, Dr. Kandis Daroski and Dr. Bijal Toprani, had to say in this webinar recap.

Published Date: Dec 1, 2023
pregnant-woman-happy-baby-pose

Webinar Recap: Get to Know Your Pelvic Floor

How well do you know your pelvic floor and the important role it plays in your overall health and wellness? Find out what our pelvic floor experts, Dr. Kandis Daroski and Dr. Bijal Toprani, had to say in this webinar recap.

Published Date: Dec 1, 2023
pregnant-woman-happy-baby-pose

Webinar Recap: Get to Know Your Pelvic Floor

How well do you know your pelvic floor and the important role it plays in your overall health and wellness? Find out what our pelvic floor experts, Dr. Kandis Daroski and Dr. Bijal Toprani, had to say in this webinar recap.

Published Date: Dec 1, 2023
pregnant-woman-happy-baby-pose

Webinar Recap: Get to Know Your Pelvic Floor

How well do you know your pelvic floor and the important role it plays in your overall health and wellness? Find out what our pelvic floor experts, Dr. Kandis Daroski and Dr. Bijal Toprani, had to say in this webinar recap.

Published Date: Dec 1, 2023
pregnant-woman-happy-baby-pose
Table of Contents

The pelvic floor plays an important role in many of your body’s functions, as well as your overall health and wellness. Yet for many women and people who were assigned female at birth, pelvic floor disorders remain somewhat of a mystery. 

In an effort to remove some of the uncertainty, stigma, and embarrassment surrounding this topic, the Hinge Health team hosted a webinar entitled Get to Know Your Pelvic Floor: Understanding Pelvic Health.

Our Hinge Health Experts

Kandis Daroski, PT, DPT
Pelvic Health Physical Therapist and Clinical Reviewer
Dr. Daroski is a pelvic health physical therapist who provides clinical expertise for the Hinge Health Women's Pelvic Health Program.
Bijal Toprani, PT, DPT
Physical Therapist
Dr. Toprani is a Hinge Health physical therapists. She is a movement specialist and an experienced PT with 10 years of combined experience in the fitness and physical therapy industries.

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During this engaging and educational discussion, nothing was off limits for our Hinge Health pelvic floor physical therapists! Dr. Kandis Daroski and Dr. Bijal Toprani covered important topics such as:

  • What is pelvic health?

  • Functions of the pelvic floor

  • Pelvic floor disorders

  • How pelvic floor therapy can help

Whether you attended and are looking for more information about pelvic health or are just tuning in for the first time, we hope the information shared in this webinar empowers you to make informed decisions about your pelvic health. 

Read on to learn our top three webinar takeaways, or watch the full recording below.

Takeaway 1: Maintaining pelvic health is crucial for overall health and wellness. 

Pelvic health refers to the overall wellness of the pelvic region and the pelvic floor, which is comprised of muscles, ligaments, and organs. Dr. Daroski and Dr. Toprani both emphasized the importance of maintaining good pelvic health, stating that it’s “hugely important and critical for overall health and wellness."

When your pelvic floor muscles are healthy, you might not be aware that they exist. But like other muscles, they can become painful, tight, less supportive, or weak. This can lead to symptoms such as pelvic pain, urinary or fecal incontinence, and sexual dysfunction — just to name a few.

Dr. Toprani went on to explain that pelvic floor disorders can occur throughout different life stages. They most often affect women post-pregnancy or during menopause, leading them to accept these symptoms as a normal part of life. However, she emphasized, “Common does not equal normal!” and she encouraged audiences to seek proper treatment.

Dr. Daroski also noted that pelvic floor disorders are very common, affecting nearly one in four women. However, despite the prevalence of these issues, many women don't seek care until an average of six and a half years after their symptoms have begun. 

She implored, “It’s time that we speak up!”

Takeaway 2: Pelvic floor therapy plays an important role in treating pelvic floor disorders.

Pelvic floor therapy is a specialized branch of physical therapy that focuses on the muscles of the pelvic floor. It often involves a combination of exercises, manual therapy, and lifestyle modifications designed to improve muscle strength, coordination, and function. Pelvic floor therapy can help treat various pelvic floor disorders, including (but not limited to) urinary incontinence, pelvic pain, and pelvic organ prolapse.

The cornerstone of this therapy is movement and exercise that targets not just the pelvic floor muscles but also all the other muscles attached to them during daily movements.

Dr. Toprani explained the different aspects of pelvic floor therapy, which include "training and behavioral lifestyle factors that can influence your symptoms like stress management, sleep, or even looking at your bathroom habits." 

Dr. Daroski further advised, "If you're having some symptoms during the types of activities that you love, it could be beneficial to take a step back, focus in on the pelvic floor, and see what it needs."

Takeaway 3: It’s important to find a physical therapist (and a solution) that works for you.

Finding the right pelvic health physical therapist is crucial for effective treatment. Dr. Daroski and Dr. Toprani urged individuals to look for a physical therapist — either in-person or virtually — with specialized training and experience in treating their specific conditions.

Dr. Toprani advised on the importance of finding the right therapist, stating, "It's okay to change providers. It's also okay to go ahead and do some research on your own to find a provider that specializes in pelvic health or a pelvic health physical therapist."

Both Dr. Daroski and Dr. Toprani emphasized the need for a solution that fits well within one's schedule for the most successful outcome. For example, Hinge Health provides convenient pelvic floor therapy that can be done virtually through our app. This means you can complete sessions on your schedule — and without leaving home. You can even schedule video visits with a pelvic floor physical therapist or chat with them using our in-app messaging. 

Getting Started with Hinge Health

If you’re looking for flexibility when it comes to pelvic floor therapy, Hinge Health offers a comprehensive program that you can do on your time. If you qualify, this option includes:

  • Comprehensive care team support

  • A personalized program designed to fit your specific pelvic floor needs

  • A mobile app with guided exercises and the ability to message your pelvic floor physical therapist

  • Access to pelvic health education and articles 

Hinge Health is a fully-covered benefit provided by certain employers and health plans. To enroll in the program or see if you qualify, visit our pelvic health page.

This article and its contents are provided for educational and informational purposes only and do not constitute medical advice or professional services specific to you or your medical condition.

FAQs About Pelvic Health

We answered many questions during the Q&A part of our webinar — and we turned to Dr. Daroski and Dr. Toprani to answer a few more here. 

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References

  1. Hallock, J. L., & Handa, V. L. (2016). The Epidemiology of Pelvic Floor Disorders and Childbirth: An Update. Obstetrics and gynecology clinics of North America, 43(1), 1–13. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ogc.2015.10.008

  2. Newman DK, Ee CH, Gordon D, et al. Continence Promotion, Education & Primary Prevention. 2009. In: Abrams P, Cardozo L, Wagg A, Wein A. Incontinence. 6th ed. 2017. p. 1647.

  3. The Hypertonic Pelvic Floor. Continence Foundation of Australia. (2019, June 13). https://www.continence.org.au/news/hypertonic-pelvic-floor 

  4. Grimes WR, Stratton M. Pelvic Floor Dysfunction. [Updated 2023 Jun 26]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2023 Jan-. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK559246/ 

  5. Pelvic Organ Prolapse. United Kingdom National Health Service. (2021, March 24). https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/pelvic-organ-prolapse/ 

  6. Hall H, Sanjaghsaz H. Diastasis Recti Rehabilitation. [Updated 2023 Aug 8]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2023 Jan-. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK573063/

  7. Dyspareunia (Painful Intercourse). Cleveland Clinic. (2021, October 14). https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/diseases/12325-dyspareunia-painful-intercourse