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Continence Management

Lifestyle tips; diet, routine and exercise

If you’ve been diagnosed with urinary incontinence, there is a lot you can do yourself to control or reduce your level of incontinence. Find out more.

If you’ve been diagnosed with urinary incontinence, there is a lot you can do yourself to control or reduce your level of incontinence. Making small alterations to your diet and introducing specific daily exercises is the way forward.

Diet 
Follow a wholesome diet with plenty of easily digestible, high fibre foods such as wholemeal bread, oats, raw fruit and vegetables. Yoghurt is a useful addition to your daily diet as it supports your natural intestinal flora. Regulate your digestion and ensure you taking enough time for eating, this will help avoid excessive pushing during defecation. Try and avoid drinking fruit and vegetable juices, black tea, coffee and alcoholic beverages as these act as irritants to your bladder increasing the feeling and need to urinate.

Routine
Some people can accustom their bladder to empty at fixed times. Over time this will become much easier and your bladder will being to adapt to a rhythm, in between, the urge to urinate will become less frequent. Begin training your bladder by going to the toilet during the day exactly every two hours for two weeks. After two weeks, gradually you can begin increase the intervals between the planned toilet trips. Overtime your bladder will hold slightly more urine and the number of times it is emptied throughout the day will reduced. 

Exercise 
Regular exercise is very important and can actually improve symptoms. It is best to choose activities that don’t exert great pressure on the abdominal and pelvic floor. Activities such as walking, swimming, dancing and cycling are great. Yoga has multiple benefits; it focuses on improving posture and strengthening your pelvic floor muscles. Yoga, is also a great way to reduce anxiety levels and increase self-confidence. 

Tip: It's always a good idea to keep a urine diary, make a note of the times you involuntarily and voluntary pass urine. This will help you self manage your incontinence and improve your confidence of managing throughout each day.