Urinary incontinence (UI) is the involuntary loss of urine and it’s a common condition in men and women of all ages, says Columbus gynecologist Dr. Otto Umana. There are two main types of urinary incontinence; they are stress incontinence and urge incontinence. Regardless of which type of urinary incontinence you are experiencing, these 8 simple tips can help you deal day to day.
1. Perform kegel exercises. An important urinary incontinence treatment, Kegels are especially effective for women with mild symptoms. Kegels are easy to do – simply clench and unclench your pelvic floor muscles.
2. Adhere to an urination schedule. Head to the bathroom even if you don’t feel like you need to go. Timed urination helps keep the bladder empty, and empty bladders cannot leak. It might take some time to determine the schedule that’s best for you, but Columbus gynecologists recommend starting with a timed urination every one to two hours.
3. Take your time. Don’t be in a hurry when you’re in the bathroom. Take your time, and after you’ve finished urinating, relax a bit and then try to urinate again. This practice – called double voiding – helps empty the bladder completely.
4. Keep the path to the bathroom clear. It may sound silly, but if you’re having accidents before you make it to the bathroom, it’s time to clear your path of obstacles so you can get there faster.
5. Cut the caffeine. As much as you may love your coffee or cola, you’re doing yourself no favor by drinking caffeine-rich beverages. To help control urinary incontinence, eliminate these diuretics, or at least cut back on your consumption.
6. Don’t drink too much. Your body needs fluids, so be sure to drink enough to stay well hydrated and keep your bladder and kidneys healthy.
7. Beware of side effects of medication. Talk with your Columbus gynecologist to make sure you’re not taking any prescription or over-the-counter drugs that could be worsening your urinary incontinence.
8. Try a tampon. Women can try wearing a tampon to help control leaks when they perform energetic activities. The tampon puts a bit of pressure on your urethra, helping to prevent leakage.
If you are suffering from urinary incontinence, call your Columbus gynecologist Dr. Otto Umana today to schedule an appointment for a check up.