Many women struggle with infertility. If you’ve been trying to have a baby for over a year, and you’ve already ruled out any clear medical cause for why you’re not getting pregnant, physical therapy might be able to help you.
Pelvic Floor Physical Therapy addresses the muscles of the pelvic floor, which includes treating the sexual organs in both men and women. Even if there’s no medical reason for not getting pregnant, there might be a musculoskeletal reason that your body is not responding to the sperm meeting the egg.
Think about all the reproductive organs in your pelvis – the uterus, bladder, and gastrointestinal organs. Further up the trunk, you have your small and large intestines, spleen, kidneys, etc. Each organ is surrounded by tissue called fascia. The fascia compartmentalizes the organ and keeps it in place, but also allows it the flexibility to move with you if you bend in any direction.
If any of those organs are not able to move around properly, it can create issues and, in some cases, affect fertility. Through techniques such as visceral mobilization and myofascial release, we can work on the fascia that might be stuck/bound and not allowing the uterus, Fallopian tubes or other reproductive organs to move properly and be healthy.
Why does the fascia get restricted and not allow the organs to move around? There are several things that can trigger this:
Trauma can be a sudden fall, accident or even something repetitive, such as contact sports. Blunt or Repetitive trauma to your body can actually create restrictions in and around the fascia, because the body wants to protect your organs.
For example, if you get hit hard with a ball in the chest, your body will tighten that area up to protect the chest. The muscles don’t always go back to the original position once the threat is over. Over time, this can affect the fascia and create restrictions.
Any surgery can cause you to form scar tissue and tight restricted fascia. Scar tissue is the body’s way of protecting and healing that area. Over time, scar tissue can potentially cause restrictions in the fascia.
So how can fascia influence fertility? In order to get pregnant, the egg and the sperm have to meet in the Fallopian tubes. The egg travels down from the ovary and the sperm travels up through the uterus. The Fallopian tube becomes pretty thin at the junction where the egg and the sperm meet, so if this area of the tub is surrounded by tight fascia, it can create some issues.
This is where pelvic floor physical therapy can have the biggest influence in terms of this infertility. It’s important to work on all the tissue in and around all the organs to help create a healthy environment for the sperm and the egg to meet.
We use many different techniques and treatment methods, including: myofascial release, visceral mobilization, working on the alignment of the whole body, mobilizing the joints and releasing muscle trigger points. It’s important to apply all of these things in the right combination to help treat our infertility patients.
Want to discuss how physical therapy might be able to help with your infertility? Click here to schedule a complimentary phone consultation with one of our physical therapists.
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