Women and Men’s Health physiotherapy

With Abigail Chambers joining forces to grow Brightwell Physiotherapy one of the obvious blogs is our new strength.

Pelvic girdle pain has been a sub-speciality for years with Felicity Peach. She has treated men & women over the years.

Now we are proud to offer Abigail as an additional Musculoskeletal physiotherapists to assess, treat and manage a range of all conditions of pregnancy related pelvic girdle pain and conditions that require more specialist pelvic health physiotherapy such as prolapse, urinary dysfunction, obstetric anal sphincter injury and pelvic dysfunction. She is fully supported by specialist bodies.

Abigail plans to write regarding Women’s Health. Her pen is poised for a future blog.

Over the years I have helped many men & women talk about their worrying, embarrassing and sometimes crippling problems in a professional way, in an ideal private clinical setting, using the most up-to-date knowledge and tools that other expects share. With these facilities help can be given in an appropriate way for these people enabling them to return to a fuller more active lifestyle.

Recently a young professional, I will call him Richard, for confidentiality, followed the advice of a colleague and sort an appointment at Brightwell Physiotherapy with Felicity Peach.

Richard gave in complex history which had involved medical intervention in the previous few years for Leukaemia. At the time of presenting to the practice he was proud to be a cancer survivor getting back to his previous fitness levels.

As is typical of many people when recovering from a major problem, he had attempted to reach his pre leukaemia level of fitness very quickly. After all he was in his late twenties. Unfortunately his journey was hampered with pain in his prostate region, despite attending the gym and being active. Then a further problem occurred, during bent over rows, he had a severe back spasm which made his prostate pain worse and brought on more saddle pain.

Richard also mentioned that the previous sixth months had been very stressful. So regaining his ability to be active was crucial.

Richard was fully assessed by Felicity Peach. Carefully guided questions, and a high quality examination with expert clinical reasoning showed the origins of his debilitating symptom. There were clear signs to show where his pain was coming from. To his initial disbelief he began to understand that it was referring from spine. 

Richard attended for three sessions, and made great progress. After the first session he happily reported 70% improvement and continued to attend for two further sessions to be able to get back to running and cycling.

His symptoms has come from a small branch of a pelvic nerve. The Pudential nerve which arises from the spinal cord, exiting the spine at the lumbar and sacral foraminal exits. The pathway of this nerve is largely within the pelvis, 80% of its course is within the muscles. 

The results were very good and life changing for him.

So what started off being hugely embarrassing and worrying became easily treatable.

What are you waiting for? 

Contact Brightwell physiotherapy now for appointment.

By Felicity Peach

01491 834622 

5 ways the cold weather is impacting your body

Do you have a constantly runny nose, but no cold?Is your back troubling you more?


If you’ve got a permanently runny nose but no other symptoms of a cold it’s time to blame the weather. The nose has a mechanism of warming the air which involves increasing the amount of mucus. 

When cold, dry air enters your nostrils it stimulates the nerves in your nose, according to David King, senior lecturer at The University of Queensland. 

These nerves send messages to your brain letting you know that it’s really quite nippy outside and your brain then responds by increasing bloodflow to your nose, which helps warm the passing on its way to your lungs. 

It also makes the nose more moist which is known as “cold air induced rhinitis”or “skiers nose”. Some people are more sensitive than others. 


When the weather is cold your first response is often to tense or hunch up which is not the best for your back, shoulders or neck. 

This can lead to a negative cycle of stiffness especially if your life style is very sedentary.

One Swedish study has looked at the effect of cold weather on a group of workers. It revealed that the occurrence of back and neck disorders was increased in outdoor workers, and lower among foremen and office workers. 

This was matched by study in Finland showing that cold temperatures increased the risk of musculoskeletal disorders.

So remember be preventative, stay active. A brisk walk if well wrapped up, a swim or a cycle safely can substitute the activity that suited you so well in the summer months. 

If you need guidance we at brightwell Physiotherapy have a wealth of experience. Call (01491) 834622. 

Dry, flaky skin

The British Associations of Dermatologists tells us that cold and windy weather can strip the skin of its moisture leading to it becoming dry, chapped and prone to flaking. Dry skin is a common problem in the cold weather which can affect anybody. However certain skin conditions, like eczema and psoriasis can worsen during the winter months as the changing temperature and dry air causes flare-ups.

As you’d expect areas of the body that are most often exposed are most at risk. Protect these areas and moisturise frequently.

Painful hands and feet

Some people experience particularly acutely painful hands and feet in cold weather. This could be a sign of Raynaud’s Disease.

This condition is thought to impact 1 in 5 people. Yet this condition is not well known about.

Raynaud’s occurs when small vessels in the extremities of your body, become acutely painful and numb, they change colour ( blue or white)  and when they warm up they become bright red -being over sensitive to cold temperatures.

Blood clots

Our body is constantly trying to stay at its optimum internal temperature 37.5°C. So that it’s cells and organs are well protected from damage. 

Sudden changes in temperature cause thermal stresses for the body, which has to work harder to maintain its constant temperature. 

This type of stress has a profound affect on the viscosity of your blood, making it more likely to become thicker and more sticky and likely to clot.

Clotting can cause general profound health problems for some, it can lead to strokes and heart attacks. Public health England recommends in the days of cold weather outside you turn up your heating to at least 18° C.

You should also make sure you move throughout the day so you keep blood flowing and keep wearing warm clothes.

Whiplash – it’s never too late to seek treatment for symptoms.

People often develop a whiplash injury after being involved in a road traffic accident although this is not the only cause of whiplash.

Not everyone who has whiplash is aware of their condition. According to the NIMD the symptoms of whiplash include:-

Neck pain

Neck stiffness

Injuries to the muscles and ligaments (Myofascial)



Burning or prickling (Parathesia) 

Shoulder or back pain

If you have any of these symptoms consider check in with your GP or directly with Brightwell Physiotherapy. (01491) 834622. We have good links to GP’s & Consultants.

For some road traffic accidents there is a system whereby they can seek fast track physio treatment. This is of great benefit in helping you get back to full health more quickly.

This case illustrates the situation perfectly. For confidentiality, with his permission here is his story. For this purpose he is called Jack. 

Jack works for a medium size drain clearance company. On his normal work journey travelling in a van with his colleagues. A person pulled from a junction and hit his van side on. A classic RTA.

Jack immediately noticed a odd head feeling, and some neck ache. Nothing too much.

Over the coming months, Jack struggled with increasing stiffness and increasing pain in his neck and back. He is 6ft tall and has a heavy manual job. Manoeuvering coils of drain rods and cameras from vans to the working sites. 

The GP and minor injuries cleared him of damage, offered first stage advise for whiplash, but this was of little help. Jack’s symptoms were increasing day by day. Jack was finding it difficult to perform his work duties. His boss was unsympathetic. The van crash was 2.5 months ago.

It was down to Jack to push for his treatment through an admin heavy system. 

Jack eventually succeeded and attended Brightwell Physiotherapy for a first assessment where his story was listened to and movements assessed, then an application for a course of treatment was made.  Thankfully the response was speedy.

Jack started his course of physiotherapy. At a time suitable for his colleague to drive him.

Over 6 foot tall Jack sat bolt upright, to an untrained eye, he seem to have a good posture

He was so stiff and in so much pain his spine could hardly be touched. Brightwell Physiotherapy has many techniques for this type of debilitating pain. 

After TENS, kinesiology taping and low grade pain relieving mobilisations. Specific personally guided exercises became the solution.

When lying on his tummy he couldn’t get back up. Imagine that when you are a tall 24-year-old man!

Further detail of Jack’s treatment is too much for now but it has been a great success, Jack is now working fully being active and looking after his little boy.

To be helped by the fast track medicolegal system and receive physiotherapy treatment has been a great solution to what was probably going to be a very debilitating and slow recovery.

Call Brightwell Physiotherapy today for help and guidance.


Written by Felicity Peach

MYTH BUSTER -Best for your back?

Fresh from Conference I’m drafting a simplified version of the latest evidence that my profession is reinforcing.

Half of all people experience back pain at some point in their lives and this is one of the leading causes of sickness and absence.

Half of neck pain sufferers don’t realise they are at risk of become another statistic, which is 70% of suffers have an ongoing disease process.

The good news is we are constantly learning more about it, thus skills develop and perfect constantly.

Clearly as we hear often, mental health and physical health are inter-related. When comparing the most active people to the least active people there is a 15% reduction in the chance of developing mental health issues with one’s musculoskeletal pain.

Physiotherapists are experts in treating – and preventing – musculoskeletal pain and specialist physios like Felicity and Abigail with their years of experience can draw from this to help you recover getting back to full health.

Call 01491 834622 for an appointment today.

Tips for getting started with activity.

1. Find something you enjoy so you’ll keep going. 

2. Set goals for yourself big or small to keep you motivated.

3. Pace yourself -start slowly and gradually build up. 

4. It’s okay to ache but if pain persists, ease back and go slower.

5. Need more motivation and support? Find someone to join you!

Find out how you can do more of what you love at:


If something needs treatment why not bring up this conversation with Felicity Peach whilst you’re at physio and she will guide you further and inspire you to get active.

Call now (01491)834622