Many women (90%) experience tears to some extent during childbirth as the baby stretches the vagina, especially with the first baby. Most tears occur in the perineum, the area between the vaginal opening and the anus (back passage). They are usually graded by ‘degrees’ and you may hear the terms ‘first, second degree tear’. Here is a brief overview of perineal tears with a link to more information if you need. Find out more here.
Pelvic Floor Muscle Damage
The pelvic floor muscles are sometimes likened to a ‘stretched trampoline’ that runs from the tailbone (coccyx) to the pubic bone from front to back, and between the two ‘sit bones’ from side to side. In everyday life they support the organs of the pelvis (bladder, uterus, and bowel) and are able to relax and contract when needed. However, because of their position in the pelvis, they play a major role in childbirth. Find out more
Pelvic Organ Prolapse (POP)
Pelvic organ prolapse (POP) is not uncommon although many women haven’t heard of the condition prior to experiencing it. Prolapse is a hernia of pelvic organs through the opening in the pelvic floor muscle. It is harmless but can cause frustrating symptoms. Keeping it simple, it is when an organ (or organs) such as the bladder, uterus or bowel loses some of its support and moves downwards through the vagina. Find out more