What happens during the Initial Assessment?
Prior to attending your first appointment you will have completed a questionnaire that contains some of the questions we will be discussing during your initial visit. The following is a list of some of the things that may be examined on the first visit, depending on your individual situation (every person’s condition and comfort level will be different):
- abdominal muscles including checking for Diastasis Recti (abdominal separation)
- movement and function of lower back, pelvis and hips
- external assessment of abdomen, vulva and surrounding area for scars, prolapse, etc.
- internal vaginal and/or rectal assessment to assess the muscles internally
Why do I need to have an internal vaginal and/or rectal assessment?
A pelvic physiotherapist can determine the strength and function of some pelvic floor muscles using external techniques however, many of the pelvic muscles can only be assessed internally. Your pelvic physiotherapist will discuss this type of assessment with you in detail at your appointment and will only proceed based on your personal comfort level and health situation. As pelvic physiotherapists we do our best to make this process as comfortable as possible (you will never be required to put your feet in “stirrups” for this assessment).
What type of treatment is involved with pelvic physiotherapy after my assessment?
The information gained during the Initial Assessment will dictate the course of pelvic treatment. This will be discussed between you and your physiotherapist on the first visit and a plan of care will be established and implemented.
Pelvic Physiotherapy treatment almost ALWAYS involves exercises (whether stretching, strengthening, relaxation, etc.) which the physiotherapist will review and re-evaluate at each appointment. The physiotherapist may also incorporate some hands-on pelvic physiotherapy techniques (either external or internal) but will be discussed wiht each person individually.
Do I need a doctor’s referral?
A physician’s referral is not required to see a physiotherapist but your insurance company/extended health benefits may require one. If you are unsure about the requirements of your insurance benefit plan and/or how to submit a claim, we recommend that you call and speak to a representative from the insurance company. We can often assist with benefit plan submissions however, for privacy reasons, insurance companies can only provide information to the insurance policy holder. Payment is required at the end of each visit.
Do insurance benefit plans cover pelvic physiotherapy?
Pelvic Physiotherapy is a specialized form of physiotherapy treatment, but it falls under the umbrella of physiotherapy when it comes to insurance benefit plans. You will not require any special coverage for pelvic physiotherapy (if you have physiotherapy benefits, it will be covered).
If you are unsure about the details of your insurance benefit plan and/or how to submit a claim, we recommend that you call and speak to a representative from the insurance company.
How many times do I need to come back for treatment? How often?
This depends on the information gained during the assessment and how well you respond to treatment. You can discuss this with your therapist.
If I am menstruating, should I still attend my pelvic physiotherapy assessment and/or treatment?
Yes, you can still attend your appointment during your menstrual period. As pelvic physiotherapists, we are comfortable working with women at all points during their menstrual cycles and do so regularly. As long as you are comfortable, there is no need to reschedule your appointment if you are menstruating or to book subsequent appointments according to your cycle.
Can I bring my baby with me?
Yes, you can certainly bring your baby with you to your appointment. You will be provided with a lot of instruction at your visit.