mental health and pelvic pain

How Mental Health And Pelvic Pain Are Related

Not many people realize how much mental health and pelvic pain are related. And I get it. Mental health and pelvic pain health seem so disconnected – so unrelated. But that couldn’t be further from the truth.

People may recognize the importance of mental health. And people may even realize the importance of pelvic floor health. But many fail to associate the two. In this blog, we’re discussing how mental health and pelvic pain are related, as well as actions you can take to make sure they’re both supported.

How Mental Health and Pelvic Pain Health Are Related

Before we go any further, I want to debunk a common myth. Pelvic pain concerns are NOT reserved for middle-aged people only. In fact, more than 1 million people with pelvic floor disorders are between ages 15 and 45.

Learn something new every day, right?

I want you to imagine a stressful situation you’ve experienced. Now I want you to imagine how that situation made your body feel and how your body physically reacted. Did you clench your jaw? Tighten your fists?

What you may not realize is that you’re also tightening another set of muscles – your pelvic floor. That’s because muscle tension is a normal response to stress.

If you are constantly stressed and therefore always tightening your pelvic floor, you could be putting too much tension on the muscles, causing pelvic pain. (This is another reason why I want to make sure people are properly educated on Kegels.)

This stress can be triggered by a number of things including anxiety, depression, or a traumatic life event (past or present).

Research has also proven that people with vaginas/middle openings are more susceptible to severe stress and anxiety than penis owners.

Taking care of your mental health and pelvic pain doesn’t have to be complicated. There are actions you can take now to make sure they’re aligned.

What You Can Do to Support Your Mental Health and Pelvic Pain Struggles

Now that we understand how the two are related, let’s dive into the things you can implement today to support your mental health and pelvic pain health.

Whether it’s downloading apps to your smartphone, moving your body, or certain foods, there are many ways to minimize stress and support your mental health so that, in turn, you can also support your pelvic floor.

Apps and memberships to support mental health

  •     High Impact Hypno
  •     My Life
  •     Insight Timer
  •     Headspace
  •     Calm

You can learn more about each of these here.

Moving your body:

  •     Walking
  •     Dancing
  •     Bicycling
  •     Yoga
  •     Tai chi
  •     Gardening

You might not have realized that certain foods can reduce stress. Magnesium-rich foods reduce inflammation in the body, which reduces cortisol levels – the primary stress hormone. These foods also promote a healthy pelvic floor.

Foods to eat:

  •     Avocados
  •     Bananas
  •     Broccoli
  •     Dark chocolate
  •     Spinach

More Ways to Address Pelvic Floor Concerns at Home

In addition to the items listed above, you can also incorporate pelvic floor tension products – if given the green light by a pelvic floor physical therapist. 

Pelvic wands and vibrators are a good option for some people who are looking to relieve pelvic floor tension. 

No matter your age or gender identity, mental health, and pelvic pain are directly linked. Working with a pelvic floor physical therapist can be a great step in ensuring your pelvic floor is in optimal condition. 

If you’re having trouble treating your mental health and pelvic pain on your own, you can always find a pelvic floor physical therapist. You can also book a FREE 20-minute discovery call with me to discuss your unique situation.

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