If you’re constantly running to the bathroom or feel like your bladder is never fully empty, you may have an overactive bladder. Fortunately, there are simple things you can do that can help with strong urges.
- Perform Kegel exercises.
Both men and women can strengthen weakened pelvic floor muscles by doing Kegel exercises. To isolate your Kegel muscles, try to stop the flow of urine mid-stream. While you can perform Kegel exercises almost anywhere, for added strength, try a Kegel exerciser. One of the most popular is the vaginal weights. Inserted like a tampon, these weights can be gradually increased as your muscles tighten.
- Maintain a healthy diet.
Certain foods can trigger an overactive bladder. This doesn’t mean you have to completely eliminate all your favorite foods – cutting back can make a big difference, too. A high-fiber diet can prevent constipation, which can cause bladder irritability.
- Drink plenty of water.
Control your intake of fluids. Staying hydrated can dilute urine, causing less irritability to the bladder and helping you stay on a voiding schedule.
- Lose weight.
Hit the gym! Excess weight puts pressure on the already-sensitive bladder.
- Practice timed voiding.
Use the bathroom on a set schedule rather than when you feel the urge to go. Make sure to work in breaks around your existing schedule so you don’t have to skip an opportunity to go because you are on your one-hour commute to work. Need a reminder? Try a vibrating watch.
- Fight the urge.
Learn to train your bladder by controlling the urge to go. You can try using the bathroom every hour and then increasing the interval slowly as you regain bladder control. If you feel a sudden urge, remain still and squeeze your pelvic floor muscles. If you’re worried about wetting, try wearing a Poise pad or Tena Guard to prevent an embarrassing leak.
|Cut down on…|
|• Coffee, tea, soda|
|• Spicy, acidic, citrus
|• Artificial sweeteners|
|• Prune juice|
|• Non-acidic foods (apples, bananas, etc.)|
|• Whole grains|
Hopefully, with these incontinence protection tips, you’ll soon be saying goodbye to your bladder control problems!