What is Endometriosis?

Endometriosis is a condition where tissue similar to that which lines the uterus grows outside the uterine cavity, affecting almost 1 million Australian women. It can cause serious pain, sometimes leading to infertility, and falls under the category of Persistent Pelvic Pain. Despite its prevalence, Endo has only recently gained the attention and recognition it deserves, with many women suffering in silence for years before being diagnosed. Unfortunately for so many women, the average diagnosis time is 6-10 years. Endo can grow anywhere from the ovaries to the spaces between the internal organs and have far reaching impacts.

What symptoms does Endometriosis cause?

Endometriosis can cause a range of symptoms that vary from person to person. Some people may experience intermittent severe cyclical pain during periods, while others may have daily pain in the vagina, bladder or bowel. Other symptoms may including painful intercourse, bloating and migraines. Symptoms often worsen over time, sometimes requiring surgical intervention.

5 ways Pelvic floor physiotherapy can help if you have endometriosis


1. Painful periods and abdominal pain

Endometriosis is highly associated with painful periods, abdominal discomfort and fatigue. Amazingly, exercise has been found to be an effective tool for managing these symptoms. It can be incredibly difficult to get moving when you’re in pain and feeling fatigued. However, engaging in physical activity can have a significant impact on your pain. Pelvic physiotherapists can provide valuable guidance in finding appropriate exercises and developing strategies to encourage movement. Engaging in activities that you find enjoyable, (i.e. dancing or yoga etc) has been shown to be particularly effective in reducing pain. Although it may be challenging to exercise when everything seems to trigger pain, a pelvic physio can work with you to find an exercise routine that works for you.

2. Pain during and after sex

Did you know that 1 in 4 women experience painful penetrative intercourse? Endometriosis can increase muscular tension in the abdominal and pelvic floor muscles, leading to pain during or after intercourse. Fortunately, pelvic physio can help alleviate these symptoms! Pelvic physios are trained to help you become more aware of your pelvic floor, provide manual therapy and exercises for you to do at home to help reduce muscle tension ana pain. We can also provide guidance on optimal positioning and strategies to increase comfort and pleasure. Increasing your pelvic floor knowledge and awareness is the key to finding relief.

3. Difficulties in emptying bladder and bowel

Increased tension in the abdominal and pelvic floor muscles can lead to bladder and bowel problems including difficulty starting or fully emptying them. The pelvic floor muscles have a significant role in controlling the urethral and anal sphincters, and when they are tense, they can impact bladder and bowel function. Luckily, pelvic physiotherapy can help alleviate these symptoms. Pelvic physiotherapists are trained to improve pelvic floor control and provide relaxation techniques and optimal strategies to improve bladder and bowel emptying.

4. Anal pain

Due to the increased muscular tension in the pelvic floor and lower abdomen, people with endometriosis often experience pain before, during and after bowel movement. Although this pain may be due to endometriosis tissue or adenomyosis, pelvic floor tension and lack of control can worsen the discomfort. Improving anal sphincter control, developing defecation strategies, and regulating stool consistency are essential for managing these symptoms. Pelvic physios are skilled in providing guidance in these areas, helping people achieve better bowel function and improved quality of life.

5. Stress and pain management

Living with endometriosis can be a real struggle, with many people reporting high levels of pain both during and outside of their periods. Unfortunately, chronic pain like this can have a real impact on your body, leading to other issues like irritable bowel syndrome, fibromyalgia, migraines and even chronic fatigue. Its not easy, but there are ways to manage the pain and stress that come with endo. Pelvic physiotherapy can provide stress management and pain management strategies to help you deal with the many challenges of living with this condition. Pelvic physios also have additional skills in manual therapy techniques (i.e. massage and joint mobilisations) to help with musculoskeletal symptoms associated with endo i.e. back pain, headaches etc.

What to do next

Want to find out more about how I can help you with any of the above challenges or other pelvic physiotherapy needs? Call Newport Physio and Health on 1300 00 4020 and speak to our experienced practice manager Sim Cleary.

If you would like to book a consultation with me at Newport Physio and Health to help you with any of the symptoms of endometriosis or any other pelvic physiotherapy issues, you can do so by clicking the Book Online button now!