Pelvic floor therapy is a type of physical therapy that focuses on the muscles, ligaments, and connective tissues in the pelvic region. It can be an effective treatment option for tailbone pain, also known as coccydynia, which is often caused by injury or trauma to the coccyx (tailbone) or the surrounding muscles and tissues. This can be a frustrating and debilitating condition for many people.
Tailbone pain can be the result of a fall, childbirth, or other types of trauma. It can also be caused by poor posture or repetitive activities that put strain on the tailbone and surrounding tissues. Symptoms of tailbone pain can include pain and tenderness in the area around the tailbone, pain with sitting or standing for prolonged periods of time, and pain with bowel movements or sexual activity. In some cases, the pain can be severe enough to impact daily activities and quality of life.
Pelvic floor therapy can be a helpful treatment option for tailbone pain, as it addresses the root cause of the pain and works to strengthen and heal the affected muscles and tissues. During pelvic floor therapy, a physical therapist will work with you to identify any areas of muscle tension or weakness in the pelvic floor.
Techniques such as manual therapy, education, and therapeutic exercises will help you regain strength and flexibility in these muscles. For tailbone pain specifically, our therapist will also work to address any postural issues or movement patterns that may be exacerbating the pain. They will also teach you techniques to help alleviate pain and discomfort during activities such as intercourse, sitting, standing, and exercising. Our physical therapists will work with you to develop an individualized exercise program that is tailored to your specific needs and goals. These exercises will include pelvic floor muscle strengthening exercises, stretching exercises, and other exercises to improve posture and movement patterns.
Manual therapy techniques, or hands-on techniques, are an essential component of the treatment plan. Here are some of the most effective manual techniques used by Pelvic Floor physical therapists to relieve tailbone pain.
- Tissue mobilization: Tissue mobilization is a manual therapy technique that involves applying pressure to the muscles and soft tissues surrounding the tailbone. This technique can help to reduce muscle tension, improve blood flow, and promote healing. A physical therapist may use their hands or specialized tools to apply pressure and release tension in the affected area. This includes soft tissue mobilization, deep tissue mobilization, and trigger point release.
- Joint mobilization: Joint mobilization is a manual therapy technique that involves moving the tailbone itself to improve mobility and reduce pain; the spine, pelvis, and hips may also be stiff and be mobilized or manipulated by a trained Pelvic Floor Physical Therapist. This technique can be effective for reducing pain and stiffness in the tailbone and surrounding joints.
- Dry Needling: Dry needling can help with tailbone and pelvic floor pain by targeting specific trigger points in the muscles and releasing tension. A thin, solid needle is inserted into the trigger points, which helps to release the tight muscle bands and increases blood flow to the affected area, which can help to reduce inflammation and relieve pain.
- Manual stretching: Manual stretching is a technique that involves gently stretching the muscles surrounding the tailbone to improve their flexibility and reduce pain. A physical therapist may use their hands to guide the patient through a series of stretching exercises that target the affected area. This technique can help to reduce muscle tension and improve range of motion in the tailbone.
If you are experiencing tailbone pain, it’s important to talk to your healthcare provider to determine the underlying cause and develop an appropriate treatment plan. With the right treatment and support, it is possible to manage tailbone pain and improve your overall quality of life.