If You Can Sleep through the night... by David at the Front Desk
Feb 08 2022
David at the Front Desk offers his own...unique... insights to pelvic floor physical therapy.
My grandpa used to tell me, "Sport, when you hit 50 you will wonder how you ever slept through the night before without peeing three times." No one calls me Sport anymore, they sure do call me a lot of other things, but as I'm inching towards that age I do lay awake at night sometimes wondering how many crappy things lay ahead with getting older. But then again, maybe we all take better care of ourselves nowadays. I'm more certain than the Braves World Series bullpen that my grandpa didn't have the advantage of pelvic floor physical therapy. If he did, maybe he would have slept through the night better.
We recently had a nice young man around the age of 70 into the clinic. He had spent thirty years, yes 30, dealing with urinary issues. He struggled with voiding his bladder, or being able to completely empty it, and his stream would be intermittent. At times he wouldn't be able to start going, he'd stand there and look at the bathroom wallpaper pattern his wife loved but he couldn't stand - and he had to install it. Nothing worse than putting up strawberry marmalade patterned wallpaper on a Sunday missing the NFL. He got on some medications for about a decade to help max out the flow and then went to more invasive interventions. He had procedures where they widened his urethra then another where they partially opened up his prostate. Then another procedure on his prostate. He had six urologists over 30 years.
Recently he went to a different urologist hoping for some alternative options. A fresh look, if you will. That urologist referred this patient to see us for pelvic floor physical therapy. We assessed his abdomen and lumbar spine (lower back) as he complained of some on and off back pain and digestive issues. His abdominals were quite tight with high tone. For most people this would be a dreamy six-pack situation we could hit the 30A beaches with, but for a man this age with the flow issues, it was too stiff limiting his flexibility and movement. He had been told along the line to try doing kegals, but that wasn't making him better as it didn't address his abs or his lumbar spine.
What has helped with improvement has been internal work to manually lengthen his pelvic floor and treat the tension with pressure, much like treating tension in a shoulder. Sometimes your muscles need good ol' manual therapy, and it may be a good place to start instead of finishing.