Let's talk about leaking urine
Do you leak urine when you cough?
What about when you sneeze or laugh hard?
Do you stay dry when you run, jump, and play with your kids?
Urinary leakage, no matter when or how much, is urinary incontinence. Leaking with coughing, laughing, sneezing, running, jumping, playing, or any other activity is called stress urinary incontinence, and you deserve better. If you are leaking urine with any activity, then it is time to put an end to it.
Now the good news, urinary incontinence is very treatable, but the sooner you start the better. There are a number of factors that may be related to this unpleasant symptom. Below are a few factors and tips to get you started on the road to dry underpants.
Volume: I know it seems that restricting your fluid intake will reduce the volume of urine and stop you from leaking, but in the long run restricting fluid volume can make incontinence worse. Concentrated urine is irritating to the bladder lining, and an irritated bladder lining makes for a sensitive bladder that does not want to hold urine.
DRINK 1/2 YOUR BODY WEIGHT IN OUNCES
Water: There are many fun and good tasting drinks that are irritating to the bladder lining. In moderate to large quantities alcohol, coffee, tea, caffeine, carbonation, artificial colors and flavors, dairy, and acidic drinks can irritate the bladder lining, and as above, an irritated bladder lining makes for a sensitive bladder that does not want to hold urine.
MAKE SURE AT LEAST 2/3 OF YOUR FLUID INTAKE IS WATER
Pelvic floor muscle strength:
You need adequate pelvic floor strength to close the urethra and ensure that urine does not leak out unintentionally. Correctly performing pelvic floor muscle contractions to increase your strength is a good practice, but around 80% of women do not perform these exercises correctly with verbal and written instruction. This means you need someone to assess your ability to relax and contract your muscles to be sure you are performing the exercises correctly.
DO 10 PELVIC FLOOR CONTRACTIONS 3X/DAY
Pelvic floor muscle relaxation:
I know relaxing seems like the last thing you would want to do to stop urinary leakage, but a pelvic floor that cannot relax cannot respond to increases in pressure. You must be able to relax your pelvic floor before you can strengthen it. Relaxing between each pelvic floor contraction that you perform is vitally important.
PRACTICE RELAXING YOUR PELVIC FLOOR THROUGHOUT THE DAY AND AFTER EACH PELVIC FLOOR CONTRACTION
Timing of pelvic floor contraction
Your pelvic floor contraction must be timed prior to an increase in intraabdominal pressure to be effective. This means that your pelvic floor muscles need to contract prior to when you cough, sneeze, jump, or laugh.
CONTRACT YOUR PELVIC FLOOR MUSCLES BEFORE PRESSURE INCREASES
I hope these tips help you, let me know, and be in touch if you have any questions.