Stop telling women their suffering is normal. Pain should be treated

Pelvic issues like incontinence, prolapse, period pain and painful sex are common but they are not normal. Just because a woman menstruates does not mean that period pain is normal.

Pelvic organ prolapse and incontinence affects one in three women, which makes these issues common. What is normal is that two-thirds of women are not affected. Period pain is common and affects one in five girls and women. What is normal is the 80% of women who have pain-free periods. The sooner we reform this culture, the better access women will have to effective solutions.

The World Health Organisation has outlined that there is a global maternal health crisis. In response, a working group of women’s health physiotherapists from four nations was set up with the aim of reducing the physical, psychological and social impact of pregnancy and birth-related injuries. We propose a proactive model to revolutionise postpartum care, similar to a successful model currently available to new mothers in France.

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