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3 Habits that won't help your bladder function or pelvic floor

- posted by Joan Palmer.

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Within teaching the Holistic Core Restore® classes, I do give out many tips that will help to keep your bladder functioning well and give you a healthy and efficient pelvic floor.  Here are 3 bad habits that are very common and will do just the opposite for you, so try and break these habits now if you are doing any of them.

  1. Going to the loo ‘just in case’. This is a very common habit of many people and it may be more prevalent after having a baby because of having to empty your bladder more frequently when the baby was bouncing up and down on your bladder!  If not addressed, it can go on well after birth and beyond.  The habit needs to stop because it means that your bladder isn’t given the opportunity to fill properly and you are not getting the right stimulation to need a wee at the correct time.  The bladder itself is a muscle and will need retraining to do this, but do it gradually over time and it will change.  Just ask yourself, ‘do I really need a wee?’.  Remember that if your bladder is filling correctly when you have a wee, you should be able to count ‘1 mississipi, 2 mississipis, 3 etc’ all the way up to at least 8.  If you don’t make it that long, then it wasn’t worth going!  Be sure to count next time and make sure your bladder function is good.
  2. Make sure you sit down to use the loo. Hovering over a toilet seat to have a wee puts you in a really bad position to be able to empty your bladder fully.  If you sit down on the loo you will be able to ‘let go’ of everything to allow a good flow of urine and insure that you get a good emptying of the bladder.  If you hover, you won’t empty the bladder effectively and this will make you more prone to bladder infections. 
  3. Trying a mid-stream stop. Doing a mid - stream stop was quite often taught to see how strong your pelvic floor was.  However, it has been shown to interfere with the mechanism of being able to empty the bladder fully and also to have the ability to ‘let go’ of the pelvic floor in order to empty the bladder.  If you are able to completely relax and let the pelvic floor go, then doing this every now and again isn’t going to cause a real problem but if done regularly to keep checking on strength of the pelvic floor, it will interfere with how the pelvic floor muscles switch on and off which again could lead to infection. 

If you recognise any of these habits yourself and you would like to know what you can do to help look after your pelvic floor further and improve its function then why not come along to our Pelvic Floor and Pimms evening – what every woman should know.  There is a choice of dates Wed 16th May, Wed 13th June or Wed 11th July at The Hive, Sports Direct Fitness, Tewkesbury Road, Cheltenham GL51 0SJ.  Tickets can be obtained here and you will find out all you need to know with myself and Specialist Women’s Health Physiotherapist Hannah Gray. 

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