For those of you that are living in blissful ignorance (and why wouldn’t you!?) a prolapse is when any one of the organs of the pelvis (bladder, uterus and rectum) fall into the vagina. In the worst cases, women experience one or more of these organs bulging outside of their body.
Now, I’m not here to scare you but I am here to talk real talk and to start the conversations that we need to be having, yet often we are not.
Some professionals report that a prolapse after having a baby sits within the realms of normal and that there is nothing to worry about. This may also be true. But what about the woman that didn’t get told, that couldn’t feel the fact that she had a mild prolapse, because its often not painful and can often be asymptomatic. That went back into exercise too hard or too soon and experienced a more severe prolapse that could have been treated sooner rather than later if she had just known about it.
Or what about the woman that looks super fit on the outside, has older children and simply wasn’t told about the risks, and now 10 years down the track she is suffering symptoms of a prolapse.
I think the biggest point to take away from this whole conversation is that prevention is better than a cure.
Childbirth can cause prolapse and prolapse can get worse over time if you don’t know about it.
I believe generations of child-baring women are exercising to a higher intensity, more regularly than we ever have done before and we just, don’t, know.
A simple postnatal visit to a women’s health physiotherapist, key information as we leave the hospital, and follow-up appointments about signs and symptoms to look out for, are important as we continued on our varied and fun exercise journey as mums. If they could potentially save us from having to figure out what might be wrong down there and having to forgo our favourite exercise down the track, then maybe shouting a little louder and raising this awareness really is worth it, for the benefit of all woman kind.