As a physio, Alisha Bajerai knows that no one person has the same body.
Her job is to better understand her patients by piecing together their history to make sense of their unique story and come up with a treatment plan specific to them.
Since having her two sons, Alisha has developed a passion for helping people with their pelvic floors and associated incontinence (leakage) issues.
And four out of five people who report living with incontinence are women. One in three women who have had a baby – and one in 10 who haven’t – experience bladder, or urinary, incontinence.
"Helping these women is vital in all ages, as it often prevents women from activities they would normally be able to do,” says Alisha. “This can vary from getting up from a chair, lifting a child, running for the bus or even feeling the sudden urge to need to go all the time.
“When we look further into leakage with high impact exercise – as leaking can be a big factor in avoiding running and other exercise – it can create a cycle of not exercising and lead to possible weight gain. And weight gain can, in some cases, further exacerbate the condition.
Studies have shown that one of the most effective ways to improve continence is to lose 5kg of weight. So, to help with weight loss, Alisha suggests women stick to more gentle forms of exercise that don’t encourage leakage.
“But if you really want to be running, jumping and cross-fitting, then seeking help from a women's health physiotherapist can help get you back to control of your bladder to get you back to what you love doing," she says.
This Women’s Health Week (2-6 September), Alisha would like to remind women with incontinence issues that they don’t need to put up with leakage, that help is out there, and they can take steps towards regaining control of the pelvic floor, “and therefore their life”.
For more information on pelvic floor health, visit Day 2 of our Women’s Health Week daily content.