1. Overactive Bladder (OAB) is the need to empty the bladder frequently, usually more often than 8x/day. If there is urgency incontinence with OAB, leakage occurs usually on the way to the bathroom or during a change of position like getting up out of a chair. Getting up at night to urinate is not normal in women of childbearing age and is considered part of this condition.
2. Stress urinary incontinence is loss of urine with coughing, sneezing, lifting, or upon exercise/exertion. It is possible to have a combination of both!
General tips for “Bladder Fitness”
● Go every 3-4 hours (5-7 times in 24 hours)
● No “ just in case” voids
● Relax when you are voiding, slowly counting to 10
● Sit! (Don’t hover above toilet)
● No straining
● Drink enough water (concentrated urine can irritate bladder!)
● Avoid constipation (going less than 1x/day)
● Avoid caffeine/carbonation/alcohol
● Go before and after sex (when it is the right time for you, sexual activity is a part of the job of a normal and healthy pelvis!)
● Avoid using super adsorbent (urinary or menstrual) pads, if possible
● Increase your abdominal strength
● See if you can properly do Kegel’s exercises (pelvic floor muscle contraction and relaxation)
General trips for bladder retraining:
● Decrease caffeine, carbonation, and alcohol consumption until urinary symptoms are under control
● Scheduled voiding usually starts with going to the bathroom every hour. You should increase this time by 15-20 minutes when 1 hour is easy and there are no accidents. Progress until you can go 3 hours between voids without leakage.
● Work on relaxing and walking calmly to bathroom. Try to breathe deep and calm the urgency before you start moving toward the bathroom.
When to talk to a pelvic floor physical therapist:
Talk to your medical provider if you still have pelvic pain or bladder problems six weeks after delivery. This also includes questions about lingering pain! There is help for pain that impacts or prevents normal activities, exercise, toileting, or sex.
In Wisconsin you can see a physical therapist directly (no referral needed from a provider) so call today for a free consultation.
Call 414-763-2941 to schedule a FREE consultation with Dr. Lauren or Dr. Sarah!