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Woman's health

Do you ever struggle to get to the toilet in time? Or fear you’re not going to make it? Do you leak a little when you cough, sneeze or exercise? If so, please know that you’re not alone........

The size of the problem

Incontinence is a distressing condition which is little discussed but very common. It is estimated to affect over 20% of women in the UK, with one in three women affected at some point in their lives.


Incontinence may occur during pregnancy, after childbirth or surgery, and can be made worse by the menopause and certain medical conditions. A persistent or frequent cough, constipation, obesity and even some forms of exercise can strain the pelvic muscles and make matters worse. Whatever the cause, at Brook Physiotherapy you will find a discreet, professional and sympathetic service for women’s health and pelvic floor issues including pregnancy, post natal and gynaecological conditions.

Common symptoms

Overactive bladder (Urge incontinence):

  • Needing to go to the toilet frequently or urgently
  • Having to get up several times in the night to pass water
  • An urgent desire to void, sometimes with leakage with little or no warning

Stress incontinence:

  • Leaking small amounts when the pelvic muscles are under stress, for example when coughing, exercising or laughing.

The effects

Incontinence is distressing. It can make leaving the house unnecessarily stressful. It can put a strain on intimate relationships. It’s also a very sensitive issue and many women don’t seek help because of embarrassment or shame. They may also be unaware of the non-surgical options available or feel that incontinence is an inevitable part of giving birth or aging. It is not!

How we can help you

The great news is there are lots of - things women can do to get back in control. Physiotherapy is a proven, effective treatment for both urge and stress incontinence and our continence therapist would love to help you. The pelvic floor muscles (that support the pelvic organs and maintain continence) are highly effective at improving control when trained with a simple exercise plan. In fact training and strengthening these muscles is recommended as first-line management in the treatment of women with stress, urge or mixed incontinence. Like any other muscles the pelvic floor muscles need exercising to stay strong. If they’re not exercised they lose tone and become weaker. However they can be tricky to work properly and it’s not always easy to tell if you’re doing them effectively. It can also be hard to keep going with them if progress feels slow.

What to expect

When you come for a physiotherapy assessment you will be welcomed into a relaxed and professional environment where we will find out how your problems are affecting you so that the physical assessment and treatment are specific to your needs. Pelvic floor muscle testing will help us determine your personal exercise plan and ensure that the exercises you do at home are effective, realistic and time efficient. Electrical modalities can be used for biofeedback and muscle stimulation where necessary (at a small extra cost). Taking control of incontinence involves work and commitment but our continence physiotherapist is here to support you every step of the way with a sympathetic service that’s tailor made for you.

We offer

Specialist trained physiotherapists with experience in treating a wide variety of pelvic floor problems
Post-episiotomy advice and treatment
Pelvic floor retraining
Fluid chart analysis
Urge control techniques
Diet and lifestyle advice
Motivation tools to complete the plan