Lancashire and South Cumbria welcomes new pilot scheme to prevent and treat incontinence

Date posted: 23rd July 2021

Lancashire and South Cumbria welcome a new pilot scheme that is offering support to new and expectant mums to prevent and treat incontinence and other pelvic issues. With one in three women experiencing urinary incontinence in the first year after having a baby, more than 17,000 women a year are set to benefit from this additional support.

The clinics will help women access a range of services and specialists such as physiotherapists, midwives, and doctors. Women can have access to exercises and advice on how to strengthen their pelvic floor.

The service can be accessed throughout a woman’s maternity care or through a GP referral. There will be an option to self-refer so that women don’t feel embarrassed seeking help.

Jennifer Huxall from East Lancashire is 32 years old. She experienced pelvic girdle pain during pregnancy, and life-changing pelvic health difficulties after giving birth to both her children. She said:

“Nobody tells you about the after-effects there can be from having a baby. You just expect to get back to normal, and when you don’t it’s a big shock – but it can happen to anyone. I really struggled after my first baby and didn’t know where to go to get help. It affected my career and ability to go back to work and do my job properly and I suffered from depression. My partner had to take time off work to help me. If it wasn’t for finally getting help from Sally the specialist physiotherapist, I don’t know what I’d have done. I think too many women suffer in silence, and it’s great that these services are being expanded so that more women can get the help they need. I hope that by sharing my experience it might help other women realise that this is not a normal part of having kids and that physiotherapy really makes a difference. Being able to get directly in touch with a physiotherapist without having to go through your GP is great and these new clinics for more women to get the support I got will make a difference to so many people like me.”

Services will be expanded following the initial trials and will be available to women in every part of the country by March 2024. 

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