Urinary incontinence can be caused by a variety of factors including weak pelvic floor muscles, spinal cord injury and prostate problems. What you eat and drink can also play a role in accidental leakage. Here are three tips on how you can manage your diet to improve your bladder control problems:
Always stay hydrated.
It may sound counterintuitive but water is your best friend when it comes to incontinence. You would think that if you drink less, you’d leak less. However, being dehydrated makes your urine very concentrated, which then irritates your bladder, causing it to spasm. This leads to urge incontinence, which involves sudden urges to go – sometimes these urges are so great, that you accidentally leak before reaching the bathroom.
Aim for six to eight cups of water each day. Drink with each meal, and carry a water bottle to help you keep hydrated throughout the day. Limit yourself a few hours before bed to avoid any accidents at night.
Identify your bladder irritants.
While water should be a staple in your diet, there are certain foods and drinks you may want to avoid. For some people, diuretics like coffee, tea and alcohol can cause the bladder to have a field day. Carbonated drinks, spicy foods and citrus foods can also lead to bladder leaks.
To figure out what your bladder can tolerate, keep a bladder diary. This journal helps you determine a pattern in your voiding habits based on what you eat and drink.
Maintain a healthy weight.
Excess weight and obesity can also contribute to urinary leakage problems. Studies have found that losing weight can significantly help reduce stress incontinence symptoms. The extra weight on your body puts extra pressure onto your bladder, causing it to unexpectedly release urine.
By maintaining a healthy diet and shedding a few pounds, as well as getting daily exercise, you can greatly improve your incontinence problems.
By being aware of what you consume everyday, you can slowly regain control of your bladder.