Five Tips for a Healthier and Happier Bladder

Your bladder is a hollow organ that holds urine that travels from the kidneys. The bladder must work correctly so urine contains bacteria and is removed from the body. It is a vital organ that most people overlook until problems start happening, such as incontinence, constant urges to urinate or painful urination. The following tips, including lifestyle and diet modifications, can help you keep a happy and healthy bladder!

Learn how to do Kegels to prevent urinary incontinence

Kegel exercises are done to strengthen the muscles, which allows for better bladder control. Weak (too loose or tight) muscles, called urinary incontinence, can contribute to urine leakage. But most people do Kegels the wrong way. It is essential to see a specialist, such as a Pelvic Health Physiotherapist, to assess the current state of your pelvic floor muscles and then learn how to perform contractions correctly for improved strength, endurance and coordination.

Drink plenty of fluids

Drink plenty of fluids – certainly 1500mL to 2000mL daily–but ensure they are non-irritating to your bladder! Bladder irritants include (but are not limited to): Smoking, Alcoholic beverages, and Caffeinated beverages: Coffee (regular and decaf), Tea (regular and decaf), Carbonated beverages, Spicy foods, Vinegar, and Tomato-based products.

Relax on the toilet while you urinate

Do not push urine out. Take time and sit to empty your bladder to avoid urinary tract infections entirely. Toileting practice should relax, and the bladder contract while the pelvic floor muscles relax to void urine. If you feel like you cannot empty the bladder, try this: attempt to void once, then do some pelvic tilts and rotations while you sit on the toilet. Imagine your pelvic floor muscles relaxing and dropping into the bathroom (but not pushing) to let the rest of the urine out.

Wipe from front to back

If you wipe the other way, bacteria from the anus can easily be transferred to the urethra (where you urinate) and cause urinary tract infections.

Keep a bladder diary if you feel that you are urinating frequently

If you have frequent urination urges (more than once every 2 hours), try the following: Stop and take 3-5 deep breaths. Lean against a wall and stay still to maintain control. Do not panic. Perform 5-10 quick pelvic floor contractions to relax the bladder. Then, stroll to the washroom.

Want to find out more? Contact one of the pelvic health physiotherapists at Treloar Physiotherapy. They would happily help you relieve your symptoms and keep your bladder healthy!

Written by: Michiko Caringal