Moms, if you’ve ever laughed too hard or sneezed suddenly, only to clench your legs in fear of leaking, you’re not alone. While incontinence and pain during sex postpartum are often assumptions, Kelsey Beach, DPT/PT, CMTPT, and owner of enCORE Therapy and Performance, says it shouldn’t be that way.
“After you have a baby, it’s not normal to have leakage or pain with sex or to wear their badge of honor saying that I pushed a baby out, so that’s 100 percent normal,” Beach says. “My goal is to educate every single person out there that’s deciding to have a baby about what pelvic therapists know—you don’t have to suffer. Motherhood is hard enough.”
Beach knows what she’s talking about. She’s been a pelvic therapist for more than a decade. Even after working with patients in this often-under-attended area for years, she was still surprised by what happened when she gave birth herself last year.
“From the moment that you hear a heartbeat, the mother is a second-class citizen,” Beach says. “We need to rewrite the narrative and tell mothers, ‘I see you, I hear you. Let’s take care of you.’”
For Beach, that means education at several vital stages—she offers classes on perinatal care, which can teach women the best ways to use their bodies’ resources to have the most comfortable pregnancy and labor experiences possible. Then after birth, in her postpartum care courses, she focuses on posture, core, and strengthening the pelvic floor to help the body heal and assume its new version of health.
She also offers pelvic floor rehab for those who haven’t had children, which can help with various symptoms from sexual dysfunction to incontinence and more. She approaches care from a medical standpoint as a physical therapist but with the conspiratorial humor of a trusted friend. Her services are personalized and don’t require a referral. She operates as an out-of-network provider, so insurance reimbursement isn’t guaranteed, but she will work with patients to provide documentation.
For so many women, feeling less than whole seems inevitable after such a significant event as childbirth, but Beach wants to change that.