The Importance of Men's Pelvic Health
Real talk guys: When it comes to our bodies, there likely is nothing more alarming than pain in the penis, scrotum or anal region. I am sure most of us have taken a hit to the groin a time or two and have suffered with the intense pain for several minutes, anxiously awaiting that moment of sweet sweet relief. Some men dealing with pain related to dysfunction of the pelvic floor, can find themselves in a perpetual state of pain which inhibits physical function, as well as sexual and emotional health.
It should come at a surprise to none of us that pain in this region is often hard to talk about and those who identify as male in particular are often less likely to seek help in comparison to our female identifying counterparts.
There are numerous reasons this pain or some variation of pain in the genitals in men may come about without a clear shot to the groin. New and persistent onset of genital or anal region pain should be evaluated by a physician. There are a list of medical conditions which refer pain to the genital and anal region in men including prostate and testicular cancer, prostatitis, testicular torsions, anal fissures and STIs, to name a few. There are also a laundry list of conditions which are not necessarily medical emergencies but equally as distressing that can result in pain, psychological distress and sexual dysfunction. These include urinary and fecal incontinence, erectile dysfunction, painful erections, painful orgasms, penile pain, scrotal pain, testicular pain, pelvic floor weakness and pain due to pelvic floor overactivity. When medical emergencies have been ruled out, where do we turn when the dysfunction or pain persists?
Many of the conditions mentioned above can be treated with pelvic rehab. The pelvic floor is a group of muscles, soft tissue and nerves which control and innervate the genital and anal regions. A pelvic health physical therapist can perform a thorough evaluation both externally and based on the patients comfort level, internally to assess for dysfunction of the structures in this region which may be the source of dysfunction or referring pain. The result can be potentially eliminating or helping to manage new or chronic pain in these regions and restoring an otherwise poorer quality of life.
These conditions tend to do best when treated early so if you have any concerns below the belt, let's talk about it!