Pieton Physical Therapy Provides Pelvic-Floor Care
‘Motherhood Is an Athletic Event,’
Says Dr. Christine Pieton
By Brandi Rivera
Having a pelvic-floor physical therapist on your birth team is recommended by Dr. Christine Pieton, owner and founder of Pieton Physical Therapy. “Motherhood is an athletic event,” she reminded me as we chatted about her practice. Pieton encourages people to consider interviewing and finding a pelvic-floor PT early in pregnancy, or even before getting pregnant, to establish a relationship the same way you would a doula or lactation consultant. Her practice offers 15-minute consultations that can easily be scheduled through her website.
I am six months postpartum from a twin vaginal delivery and overall would call the delivery “uncomplicated.” As I was preparing for our call, I wrote down my symptoms, including lower back pain and being unable to hold my pee as long as I used to. I’d considered these regular side effects of childbirth, and among my mom friends, they wouldn’t even constitute a conversation.
But at six months postpartum, 25 percent of women still experience pain with sex, 33 percent still deal with urinary leaking, and 50 percent still endure low back pain, Pieton explained. She was kind and clear in her delivery that “it’s never too late to get stronger” and that her practice wants to help moms restore their strength so they can get back to moving, exercising, and the heavy lifting parenthood requires.
We talked about how, during pregnancy I was seen 15-plus times by doctors but then only once after delivery. Postpartum services are not as clear-cut or available as prenatal care. Pelvic-floor therapy is not typically part of a physical therapist’s education but is offered as additional training post-licensing. Pieton’s specialty before adding pelvic floor to her repertoire was sports and orthopedic therapy, which she still practices. Ongoing treatments are customized and scheduled based on the needs and goals of patients.
When thinking about building a baby registry, Pieton suggested including funds for pelvic-floor therapy along with other services the family will need in postpartum care.
1211 Coast Village Rd. #5; (805) 628-4547; pietonpt.com