Pelvic pain (PP) Is a condition frequent among females and males. With the release of the book, A Headache in the Pelvis in 2010, there is a new awareness of pelvic pain. This article will discuss pain of the pelvis, its causes and a natural, safe, gentle form of treatment.
The pelvis is a complex area of the human body. Let’s begin with some anatomy.
There are three bones of the pelvis; the sacrum/coccyx which is the “tailbone” and the iliac bones which are the “wings.” There are two very important joints between both sides of the sacrum and each iliac bone called the sacroiliac joints. The sacroiliac joints are gliding joints and glide back-and-forth when we walk. It should also be noted that the lower spine forms a joint with the top of the sacrum and the thigh bones form a ball and socket joint with both iliac bones.
There are numerous muscles associated with the pelvis. First, there are the muscles of the pelvic floor. These run from the pubic bone in the front to the tailbone in the back. They can be thought of as a sling or a hammock and they form a floor of support to hold the lower abdominal organs like the bowels and bladder.
There are also a number of smaller muscles that attach from the tops of both thighs to various parts of the pelvis. These muscles are stabilizers which mainly protect the joints of the pelvis. They allow appropriate movement of the bones of the pelvis but guard against too much motion.
Larger muscles of the pelvis such as the buttock muscles, the hip flexors and the muscles of the front and back of the thigh control the major movements of our upper legs.
There are ligaments between the iliac bones and the sacrum. There are also ligaments between the lower spine and the sacrum and between the tops of the thighbone and the iliac bone.
Problems occur if there are misalignments or improper motion of the sacroiliac joints. This can irritate nerves which causes muscles to become tight or in spasm and create very uncomfortable pelvic pain.
Sometimes muscles of the pelvic floor can become stretched or weak. This particularly occurs because of pregnancy, creates very uncomfortable PP and can persist well after a woman delivers her baby.
At times, ligaments can become stretched or sprained. This allows too much movement of the joints of the pelvis which results in a painful pelvic area.
The book A Headache in the Pelvis notes that many times patients are embarrassed to discuss this delicate and sensitive area with healthcare providers. Additionally, there are times when PP is misdiagnosed as prostatitis, constipation and urinary tract infection. Treatment of antibiotics, painkillers and anti-inflammatories do not help if pain of the pelvis is of mechanical nature.
Fortunately, there is a physical, natural, nonpharmacologic, surgery free treatment that can help give pelvic pain relief. Chiropractors can perform manipulation of joints of the pelvis to improve alignment and restore proper movement to the joints. Chiropractic care can also utilize forms of soft tissue healing by performing pressure point therapy on muscles that are in spasm and on ligaments that have been sprained to promote tissue healing. A doctor of chiropractic can also counsel patients on what exercises can be performed to strengthen weak muscles and to improve posture.
If you are suffering from pain of the pelvis discuss it with your chiropractor so that you can receive pelvic pain relief.
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