Heather Jeffcoat – Featured Woman
Heather Jeffcoat is a remarkably talented woman with a business committed to helping other women. She is a pelvic floor physical therapist out of Los Angeles, CA. She was nominated and introduced to The Modern Woman’s Life Magazine by one of her patient’s who sings her praises.
Jennifer Briggs, a DPT Physical Therapist says about Heather’s book, “Sex Without Pain is an essential book for any woman suffering with pelvic or sexual pain. Heather’s approach is simple and clear. She empowers the woman and her partner with the resources needed to lead a healthy and pain free sex life. A great read for patients and professionals alike.”
Heather is delightful, and easy to talk to and full of ideas for the areas of life many of us fight with but simply accept. Ever want to do jumping jacks without fear of running to the ladies room? Did you know you don’t have to live with that condition just because you gave birth or are over 40? Her book tells you how.
I love when I interview women who open my eyes to new-to-me education that can help me be my best. Incontinence and sexual pain has a champion and her name is Heather! Thank you Heather for helping women with what we don’t talk about but should!
1) What exactly is your business and what made you get started? I own a Women’s Health physical therapy practice in Los Angeles, CA. We specialize in treating pelvic floor disorders, especially incontinence and pain. I have a high percentage of women that experience sexual pain or other sexual dysfunction. My business has grown over the past several years out of necessity. 1 in 3 women of childbearing age experience chronic sexual pain at some point in their lives, and nearly 1 in 2 post-menopausal women. There is clearly a need for these services and I am thankful I can help fill the gap in this aspect of a women’s care. In order to help fill this need, I wrote a book on self-treatment for sexual pain – Sex Without Pain: A Self Treatment Guide to the Sex Life You Deserve
2) What one thing do you do every day to move yourself forward and stay focused? Where do you find your inspiration? I am definitely motivated by my successes. Knowing the positive impact my treatment techniques have on my patients’ lives keeps me always striving to create the best program I can for them. My inspiration comes from seeing the positive results in my patients, especially how it effects their relationships with their partners and how it improves their ability to engage socially (especially in the realm of NOT avoiding social activities because of their problem). And not to sound like a physical therapy cliché, but every day, I actually stretch before I hop out of bed. My body just needs that extra length to move smoothly through my day.
3) What do you do regularly to take care of yourself? Every morning, I make myself two eggs. It’s the only way I stay full through the morning. It starts my day off right and helps me keep my focus through the first part of the day. I also take a spin class once or twice a week. And you’ll often find me doing a variety of stretches on my foam roller. If I miss it for a week I feel awful!
4) How do you keep yourself emotionally balanced while you are pushing forward? This is always the challenge, but I have found the greatest success in my focus when I can carve out my regular exercise routine. Even if I can go one time per week, I can look forward to that time and think how lucky I am to be there.
5) What’s the best part and the worst part of your job? The best part is meeting so many amazing women and helping them realize that their problems are not in their head, it’s in their pelvis! The worst part is this type of physical therapy is not ‘massage therapy’. It is detailed and specific muscle and tissue work I am doing to relax the involved area, and unfortunately there is some temporary pain in that. I’m fully aware that patients would love to never come back and see me again. That’s okay as I don’t take it personally—it means they’ve met their goals and are enjoying aspects of their lives they may have never had a positive association with before.
6) What failure taught you the most and what was it? When working with pelvic pain, especially sexual pain, there was no textbook at the time I started (over 13 years ago) I could go to for advice. I had to figure out a lot on my own and bouncing ideas off colleagues. Some of my earlier patients did not get the treatment from me that they should have. At the time, it was the best I could do with the tools that I had. However, I learned what NOT to do and also what works best and this has really molded my current treatment approach to pelvic pain and sexual pain disorders.
7) If you had to do something different, what would that be? I would love to go on The Voice. Singing has always been a passion of mine. I cannot go a day without singing. I would choose Team Gwen.
8) If you had advice to give to someone else who was thinking of becoming an entrepreneur, what would that be? You don’t know everything. Ask for help when you need it. On your rise to the top, take those that helped up with you. They clearly care about you succeeding or they would not have helped you in the first place. Be cautious of those that say they will help you, but never show up.
9) What did you have to overcome personally to be able to do what you do? Working with women with sexual pain disorders used to take a lot out of me. I mean, I would be exhausted at the end of the day. But as my techniques progressed and I started to see better results in less time, being with my patients actually started to energize me.
10) Any last parting words? All women need to know about Pelvic Floor physical therapy! We are the best kept secret in medicine.
Listen to my 2/10 episode of Loveline w/ Dr. Drew http://bit.ly/19cZ4RK