C-section account for approximately 30% of live births in the United States. Though fairly common, they are still a major abdominal surgery and therefore require appropriate rehabilitation to ensure adequate healing and to restore strength and mobility, and address any musculoskeletal imbalances that may have arisen because of the surgery. Here’s how physical therapy can assist with C-section recovery:
- Scar tissue management: Physical therapists can employ manual techniques, such as scar mobilization and massage, to improve the mobility and flexibility of the C-section scar tissue. This can help reduce adhesions, decrease scar tissue tightness, and promote optimal scar healing.
- Core and pelvic floor rehabilitation: C-section surgery can affect the strength and coordination of the core muscles, including the abdominal muscles and pelvic floor. Physical therapists can guide you through exercises to reestablish core stability, rebuild strength, and restore proper function of the pelvic floor muscles.
- Postural re-education: C-section recovery can sometimes result in changes in posture and movement patterns. Physical therapists can assess your posture and movement mechanics and provide guidance on proper body mechanics to prevent strain on the incision site and promote optimal recovery.
- Restoration of mobility and functional activities: Physical therapists can assist you in regaining mobility and gradually returning to your daily activities. They can provide exercises and movements that address any limitations or restrictions, ensuring a safe and effective transition back to functional activities.
- Individualized exercise program: Based on your specific needs and goals, a physical therapist can design a personalized exercise program to aid in C-section recovery. This may include strengthening exercises for the core and lower body, flexibility exercises, and cardiovascular conditioning as appropriate.
- Education and guidance: Physical therapists can provide education on post-C-section care, including proper lifting techniques, body mechanics during activities, and self-care strategies to promote healing and prevent complications.
Our skilled team of pelvic floor physical therapists will perform a thorough evaluation to identify areas of impairment that are contributing to your symptoms. Following the exam, your physical therapist will work with you to create a plan of care that best suits your personal goals and needs.