Pediatric pelvic floor physical therapy had been lauded as the most effective and safe means of treating bladder and bowel holding dysfunction among very young children. This is a condition that is more common than many people would like to think, it is now prevalent among young children who are just starting potty training, or older children who have been potty trained but learned bad potty habits along the way.
The bladder and bowel dysfunction is evident when children are unable to pass urine and bowel movements properly and who are constantly experiencing incontinence and constipation. Consequently, children become bedwetters or have constant accidents with their urine and feces, anywhere from not being able to hold and get to the bathroom on time or becoming regularly wetting their beds at night.
This can be frustrating for parents and children alike and can have negative long-term effects. It is important that this be addressed as soon as possible so that it will not become a problem in the future. When people have bad toilet habits, it usually can be traced to their younger years and not something that they develop in adolescence or adulthood.
Moreover, bad toilet habits can have health implications that can lead to other medical conditions. So, if you notice that your child is having problems in urinating and in their bowel movement, it is best to take action as early as you can. The pediatric pelvic floor physical therapy is said to effectively address the issues that children have in this area and it will also help them develop better ways of dealing with the problem.
Since this therapy works with the pelvic floor muscles, it will be able to train the muscles and as they develop muscle memory, it becomes an automatic response or mechanism and will help them have good toilet habits in the long term. You do not have to rely on costly medication and doctor’s visits and psychological assessments to be able to treat the problem, physical therapy is all that is needed.
Why Pediatric Pelvic Floor Physical Therapy is Needed?
Pediatric pelvic floor physical therapy is an intervention method meant to help children use and train their pelvic floor muscles to be able to distend, contract, and stretch it so that the bladder and bowels can hold their content and also empty it when they go to the toilet. There have been many theories on what causes bed wetting at night, accidental urine and bowel leaks, and incontinence and most attribute it to some psychological and emotional factors.
It could be that children become anxious and stressed during potty training due to the pressure that parents put on their children to perform it correctly, and the fear of getting punished if they had an accident. Others emphasize the biological factor in potty training, wherein too much food or liquid intake can cause accidental leaks or if the stomach does not agree with what has been eaten or taken in. for example, consuming too much dairy can cause loose bowel movement as some children can be lactose intolerant.
Some also believe that it is a means of attention-getting for children whose parents are too busy for them, so they use the accidental leaks as a means of acting out. These are some very serious theories and have a profound impact on how children handle themselves in the toilet but one simple reason that is overlooked is the fact that when children go through potty training, they are told and sometimes forced to hold as long as they can their bladder and bowels.
When they learn to hold for long periods, it weakens their pelvic floor muscles, and hence when they need to go to the toilet, they are unable to completely empty it. When this happens all the time, accidental leaks are bound to happen and they can occur at any time and any place and can be very frustrating. Pediatric pelvic floor physical therapy is designed to treat poor muscle control and teach children how to make use of their pelvic floor muscles in emptying their bladder and bowels.
Who Should Perform Pediatric Pelvic Floor Physical Therapy?
Pediatric pelvic floor physical therapy should only be performed by licensed physical therapists who have been trained in pediatric physical therapy. Physical therapy is needed in many conditions that require rehabilitation to gain muscle strength and movement, but young children have different needs and their bodies are still developing and the treatment given to them should ensure that it does not in any way hinder or damage their muscles or adversely affect their growth and development.
Physical therapy for children should be a hundred percent safe, non-invasive, pain-free, and will not endanger the patient in any way such as in the use of equipment, electrical bursts, or strenuous exercises. If your child is having incontinence and does not seem to outgrow night wetting, and you have tried every trick in the book to manage it to no avail, then maybe it is time for pediatric pelvic floor physical therapy.
Make sure to do a little background research before you contact a physical therapy clinic or practitioner, make sure that they are certified to work with young children. You might also set up an appointment first to discuss your concerns and worries, and it will be the physical therapist who will inform you of your treatment options, and the choice will be made by you and your therapist as they will explain the advantages and disadvantages of the procedure and the costs involved.
It is for the parent to decide which treatment option to try and how long they are willing to try it. If after a few sessions, there will be no improvement, the therapist will inform you that the procedure is not working and must be changed or enhanced. If the cause of the incontinence is not physical then you will be referred to another specialist. But most parents who have gone through the therapy attest that it has effectively corrected their child’s toilet habits and they have been very happy with the results.