So I wanna talk about something that I hardly ever even talk to my friends about. It’s about having to pee and not being able to hold it. (I’m turning red already.) It happens to me the most when I am out for a while doing errands.
I finish my errands, drive home, park my car and start to bring up the groceries. My hands are completely full. I get to my door, and it’s locked. Shit. I know my husband is at home, but he always locks the door. Drives me crazy.
I locate my keys in my purse, where everything gets lost as soon as I throw it in the bag. I drop the stuff I’m holding and unlock the door after trying several keys that all look the same. Then I gather everything up again, trying to bring in all the merchandise I purchased in one fell swoop. Half-way into it, I have an urgent need to pee.
I rush into the hall, drop everything on the floor, and get to the closest toilet I can find. Sometimes I make it, and sometimes I don’t. Usually I am alone, so it’s not too embarrassing. If my pup Zoey could talk, she would have a lot to say. From the minute I hit the hallway, she’s running after me, following me to the bathroom.
Some friends that I’ve spoken to about this admit to peeing in their pants. Mainly because they laugh too hard. Or have a coughing fit. Or both.
Ladies under 40, these are the glorious times you can look forward to in your 50s and beyond. Is there a way to prevent this besides wearing senior diapers? Sorry, I rather pee on my bathroom floor a little rather than wear a diaper.
According to Mayo clinic, urinary incontinence — the loss of bladder control — is a common and often embarrassing problem. The severity ranges from occasionally leaking urine when you laugh, cough or sneeze to having an urge to urinate that’s so sudden and strong you don’t get to a toilet in time.
Mayo’s experts report 10 things you can do, (other than wear diapers,) to relieve symptoms.
Daily Pelvic Floor exercises – Pelvic floor exercises can be really effective at reducing leakage, but it’s important to do them properly. You may have to do pelvic floor exercises for three months before you see any benefits. Check out Wed MD for the correct method.
Quit Smoking – If you smoke, you put yourself at risk of incontinence, because coughing puts strain on your pelvic floor muscles. To help you quit, locate your closest NHS Stop Smoking Service from the NHS Smoke-free website. I smoked at age 16, wanting to look cool. I also quit at age 16, wanting to be cool.
Do the Right Exercises – High-impact exercise puts pressure on your pelvic floor muscles and can increase leakage. Sit-ups can also make you leak by straining your pelvic floor muscles. Awesome, because running and I no longer see eye-to-eye. If you want to strengthen your pelvic floor to relieve symptoms, replace jogging and aerobics classes with Pilates. This gentle method of stretching and strengthening core muscles has become more popular as a treatment for stress incontinence.
Avoid Lifting – Lifting puts strain on your pelvic floor muscles, so avoid it wherever you can. When you do need to lift something, like picking up children or shopping bags, tighten your pelvic floor muscles before and during the lift. No wonder I have to urgently pee when I get home!
Losing Weight- Being overweight can weaken your pelvic floor muscles and can cause incontinence, because of the pressure of fatty tissue on the bladder. Your symptoms may improve, and could clear up completely, if you lose the excess weight. I’m in process, dear readers. Your body mass index (BMI) is a measure of whether you’re a healthy weight for your height. I’ve got some work to do.
Drink Plenty of Water – Drink six to eight glasses of fluid a day (but no more) unless your doctor advises you otherwise. Many people with urinary incontinence avoid drinking fluids, as they feel it causes more problems. However, limiting your fluid intake makes incontinence worse, because it reduces your bladder’s capacity. Too little fluid can also cause or worsen constipation. Another thing to look forward to, young ladies!
Eat the Right Foods – Avoid spicy and acidic foods, such as curries and citrus fruits, as they can irritate the bladder and make leaks and other incontinence symptoms worse.
I guess I gotta nix the OJ for breakfast in the AM. Or wear a diaper. Stay dry, my readers!
This content was originally published here.