6 Unexpected Ways to Stay Dry

Regaining bladder control may be easier than you think!

Jacqueline Stenson

Ease constipation. You might not realize it, but hard, compacted stools can put pressure on your bladder. And if you’re constantly straining during bowel movements, you may weaken the muscles that support your bladder and urethra. Straining can also irritate the nerves that control the bladder, colon and rectum, resulting in an urge to urinate. “Relieving constipation will improve your bladder problems,” says Dr. Griebling. Be sure to drink plenty of fluids, and fill your plate with fiber-rich foods like veggies, fruits and legumes.

Get moving. If you have stress incontinence, you may avoid exercise for fear that you’ll leak. But being active is important for maintaining a healthy weight and bladder health, says Dr. Moore. Core workouts like Pilates and yoga may even strengthen the pelvic muscles that help with bladder control, she notes. If you find that certain exercises cause you to leak, try low-impact activities such as swimming, walking and biking.

June 2012