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Pelvic floor post baby
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Hi all,

I just had my third baby 5 weeks ago (uncomplicated pregnancy and vaginal delivery with no issues). This time around I had only first degree lacerations (first two times second degree) and I was able to go for walks 6 days after giving birth. In fact, walking felt so great that I walked every day for 6-10km.

Two weeks postpartum I decided to "just try a bit" of jogging. I ran a lot before the pregnancy but not much during, although I did walk 6-10km each day during pregnancy. Anyway, jogging even for short amount to of time didn't feel good. I tried again a week later (3 weeks post partum) and it felt hard but I managed to put in a mile for two days in a row. It was so slow that I never even thought it was possible to jog at such a slow pace.

And then my pelvic area felt funny and I started googling stuff...I am freaked out about the damage I may have done with my jogging attempts. I am scared that I jogged myself into a prolapse. I don't have any leaking or stress urinary incontinence (not even when I was jogging) but if I walk for a while then I feel like something is not right (like a tampon is out of place). I read so much online and all the horror stories that I don't even know if I had these symptoms before and how much I am imagining.

It's been a week and I haven't gone for any walks, but have been doing pelvic floor strengthening exercises that I bought at "hab-it" with Tasha Mulligan. For the past week things have felt fine, but I haven't walked and I am scared to walk as I dont want to feel that something is wrong. Tomorrow I am seeing my gynocologist and will ask him to assess if I have a prolapse. After that I plan on visiting a pelvic floor women's physio therapist, but I want to know if there are some good resources online aside from hab-it. So far I have been reading some conflicting info on pelvic floor strengthening (i.e. a million kegels are good, or don't do a million kegels, don't tuck your tail bone in, suck your belly button in...). My experience with physio therapists is that they deal with non active people. I want to get strong and healthy to be active above and beyond regular people so that I can go back to high impact activities.

Some more info about me: first two births vaginal deliveries with tearing. Some stress urinary incontinence following each delivery for a year or so (when running intervals, not during easy pace). The incontinence resolved itself as I became more and more active and did strength (never kegels though). After each birth I got back into running 3-6 times per week 6 weeks post partum.

My questions are:

Have you had any experience with the program at the "hab-it" website? Did it help?

What are some good online resources for pelvic floor strengthening post baby with an aim to get back into running?

Is it possible that I have done some permanent damage with attempting 1-2 mile jogs (at like 13min/mile) or did the damage already exist? If I have a mild prolapse, can I ever get back to running? Many websites say that I can't. Ever.

Any other comments would be welcome.
Last edited by: IronLady: Aug 6, 18 13:08
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Re: Pelvic floor post baby [IronLady] [ In reply to ]
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No answers to your questions, but this video came up on my feed recently, don't know if it is any help: https://www.youtube.com/...BX8UZ7i4&t=1496s

(It's Gwen Jorgensen and her pelvic PT talking about stuff.)
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Re: Pelvic floor post baby [IronLady] [ In reply to ]
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Quote:
If I have a mild prolapse, can I ever get back to running? Many websites say that I can't. Ever.

That can't be true. It's 2018! Surely we've found a way to fix this stuff!
(sorry, I know nothing and can't be helpful, that just sounds horrible)

disclaimer: PhD not MD
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Re: Pelvic floor post baby [IronLady] [ In reply to ]
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I have a prolapse after the birth of my child. Running so soon is a big no-no! I’ve seen a Urogynecologist and a PT. I do the Hab-it video. It’s ok for keeping things moving but I’m afraid I don’t have all the answers for you. I did 3 months of PT and still ended up having a hysterectomy. I did another 3 months of PT after and have been advised any running, jumping, lifting or high impact is a thing of the past... sadly. I really miss my running!
I’m still dealing with bladder and rectocele prolapse but they’re not terrible and for the most part unless I over do it don’t bother me too much. I recently stopped breastfeeding so I’m hoping there will be further improvement. If you are on Facebook I would encourage you to join a group called POP fitness.
Really once you have a prolapse it’s there to stay but you can improve your symptoms (tampon feeling) unfortunately most people’s goal becomes avoiding surgery. That’s why certain activities become no-no’s. There are definitely people out there who do training that is not advised but just know that it will probably increase the likelihood of surgery.
You would think in this day and age it’s a problem that can be solved but it’s so tricky as everyone is different.
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Re: Pelvic floor post baby [squarewheels] [ In reply to ]
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Thanks for the reply! Did yiur hysterectomy involve surgical mesh? To keep things in place?
So have it didn't really work? How bad was your prolapse (stage 4)? Did you have a hard vaginal labor that resulted in prolapse? What do you do for fitness?

Did you have any issues during running before having a baby?
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Re: Pelvic floor post baby [IronLady] [ In reply to ]
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Just the hysterectomy with a vaginal vault lift. I haven’t touched the other prolapses. No mesh, honestly it scares me as I know it can fail fairly easily but for some women it’s appropriate. Just make sure you have an amazing and qualified surgeon.
My uterus was 2-3 grade and I think the others are 1-2 but it’s been 4 months since I was last checked.
Yes I had a tough pregnancy and threw up for 9 months! Then a rough and long delivery. I would like to avoid any more surgery for as long as possible because I don’t think the success rates are great as we are all so physically different.
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Re: Pelvic floor post baby [IronLady] [ In reply to ]
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Sorry just saw I didn’t answer all your questions. I had zero issues before baby. I ran and did lots of activities. Now I’m having to rediscover ways to be active. It’s a process for sure!
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Re: Pelvic floor post baby [IronLady] [ In reply to ]
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Saw your reply on the older thread and followed you to this one.

First and foremost - I am glad you are feeling so well after the birth of your third child! Congrats! I would suggest you back off the activity at this stage - I know that is a difficult thing to hear. The first 12 weeks postpartum are considered the 4th trimester and are important for long term health. I say this more as education for anyone who may be reading this. I know there are many professional athletes (Gwen comes to mind) that are running insane amounts right after delivery. Please remember they are getting paid to do this and that just because we don't hear of the problems doesn't mean they may not be occurring.

Next- as always without seeing you in person always hard to know what exactly is happening.

Glad to hear you are on your way to your MD for assessment. Even an 'uncomplicated' delivery is trauma for the pelvic floor. I would personally (and of course I am biased) request a referral to physical therapy. There are many pelvic health therapists that work with healthy, active women postpartum. I am sorry you've found so many that don't. I am happy to help find the appropriate provider for you. Feel free to PM me your location if you would like.

I have known many women to go back to being active after prolapse. It may involve using things like a pessary to help. The extent, organ(s) effected, and hormonal status can all play a roll. If you are still breast feeding, this can also play a roll. The decision to have surgical interventions should always involve a team and again I am biased, but should be done only after a concerted and long effort at conservative measures.

Exercises from the internet are particularly difficult at the stage of recovery you are in from delivery. We don't know if you are able to fire the muscles correctly, if you had previous injuries that didn't heal correctly, if you are contracting only one side, etc. This really needs to be evaluated (likely internally) prior to doing a bunch of exercises. There are many resources, but without knowing your body specifically it can be very difficult.

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