You have most likely trained your bladder to be overactive every time you “go“ before you leave the house, or you go “just in case“. The good news is that we can retrain it to signal us only when it is full. Doesn’t that sound amazing? Fewer bathroom trips.
By Cheryl Coppa
When you have “Urge Incontinence“, this is when you have to go ALL THE TIME! It’s not only annoying, but it's disrupting our basic everyday life activities. Unlike many of our other organs, you can train this one. You have most likely trained your bladder to be overactive. The “just in case“ pee stops. This has trained your bladder to signal that it is full even when it is not. Every time you “go“ before you leave the house, or you go “just in case“, you have trained your bladder to signal you and send out that panic that it needs to empty even though it is not full.
If you really think about it, we have been doing this most of our lives. So, the good news, we have trained our bladder to be overactive thus we can retrain it to signal us only when it is full. Doesn’t that sound amazing? Fewer bathroom trips.
To retrain the bladder we will do just the opposite. You’ll see that often it only takes a few days to a week to retrain the bladder. Let’s start by NOT going “just in case“. We will work on not emptying the bladder until it is full. When our bladder signals us it is full (but we know it’s not), disrupt that signal by scrunching your toes or doing something to distract those signals. Even doing a breathing exercise or singing a song, anything to disrupt that signal.
Hold off, even if it is just for 30 seconds. Next time, hold off a minute, and so on. A full bladder would need to empty every 4+ hours and the liquid would be about 1 1/2 - 2 cups (10 seconds of a solid stream). Anything less than this, then the bladder is not full, it has only been trained to signal you that it is.
Of course, there are those bladder irritants that will make you need to go such as caffeine, alcohol, or tomatoes, so keep that in mind as well. Maybe even track to find out what your bladder irritants are as they can vary from person to person.
I had a long drive over Thanksgiving and it was a good opportunity for me to put my bladder to the test. I know my irritant is caffeine, so I did not drink any caffeine until I knew we were going to stop within the hour. But before that we drove for 3 hours, then I had my caffeine, then we had the first pee stop. Taking these small steps you should see a difference very soon.
The magic of training. The body responds very well to training.
Take charge 💪🏼 retrain your bladder.
After these steps and you are not noticing a change, you may have “Stress Incontinence” this is different. This is when you leak when you cough, laugh, sneeze or jump. This would need additional training measures, but also something that is 100% reversible.
Again, the magic of training!
About Cheryl Coppa
A certified Core Confidence Specialist (Core and Pelvic Floor retraining)
A certified Personal Trainer specializing in women's fitness over 40
Low-Pressure Fitness / Hypopressive certified by creator Dr. Tamara Rial
Pre/postnatal corrective exercise specialist
Instructor of the Pelvic Floor Health program, Ola KaOla
40 years young, wife & mother of 3