24 Jan Menopause and urinary incontinence
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Have you suffered from occasional urine leakages or do you feel the need of peeing more in your transition to menopause? This is known as urinary incontinence (UI), and it’s a very common symptom in this period of your life.
Urinary incontinence is defined as the loss of control of the bladder, which causes involuntary urine leakage. It can affect women of all ages and at any time of their life.
However, it’s more common during menopause because the pelvic floor muscles weaken, due to the hormonal changes of your body.
This can be very uncomfortable to most women, but the good thing is that there are ways to prevent and treat it!
Why does menopause cause UI?
One of the first steps to prevent urinary incontinence and to treat any of its symptoms is to understand what is causing it. In the case of UI during menopause, there are a lot of factors that can alter the control of your bladder.
- Weak pelvic floor muscles: During menopause, the pelvic floor muscles start to weaken, due to the drop in estrogen levels. Weaker pelvic floor muscles imply less control of the bladder and the urge to urinate more frequently.
- Less elasticity in your bladder: Over time, the base of your bladder may lose elasticity and have difficulties stretching enough to be completely filled. This can cause irritation, which leads to an overactive bladder or the feeling that you have to go to the toilet more frequently.
- Weight gain: Many women gain weight during menopause. When this happens, the pelvic floor muscles have to make more effort in order to hold the pressure of the extra weight. This weakens even more the pelvic floor muscles and reduces the control over the bladder.
Prevention and treatment
Fortunately, there are ways to prevent and treat urinary incontinence:
The best way to strengthen the pelvic floor muscles is doing the Kegel exercises. If you do these exercises regularly from the beginning, you can avoid the problems related to urinary incontinence. If you are already experiencing UI, the Kegel exercises will help you have more control over your bladder and reduce the urine leakages.
- Chinese balls
The aim of using Chinese balls is to tone up the pelvic floor muscles. The method of use is simple: insert them into your vagina and when you move or walk a small ball that is inside it will produce a vibration when hitting the vaginal walls. This vibration causes an involuntary contraction of the pelvic floor muscles. Do you know how these involuntary fibres are also activated? In an orgasm! And also, with hypopressive exercises that you will find in B-wom.
- Limit the consumption of alcohol and caffeine
Drinks with alcohol or caffeine makes your bladder fill very fast, causing pressure and visits to the toilet more frequently.
- Keep a healthy weight
The excess of weight increases the risk of UI due to the pressure on your bladder. Losing weight or keeping it at healthy levels can help you reduce this pressure.
- Train your bladder
Training your bladder gradually to use the toilet only in certain moments of the day can help you strengthen its muscles and reduce the risk of UI. This is called Bladder Training.
As you know, urine leakages are a very common problem during menopause. If you haven’t experienced it, then great! However, it is important to prevent it: do daily routines of Kegel exercises, make sure you keep a healthy weight, protect your pelvic floor muscles from excessive pressure and we recommend the Icon Undies panties.
If you are experiencing small urine leakages, it can be easily treated by strengthening the pelvic floor muscles. In other cases, UI may be permanent, but you can still reduce the symptoms (frequency and intensity). Consult your doctor or find a specialised physiotherapist,
Do not ignore the problem, UI rarely goes away on its own. In fact, it can get worse over time if not treated properly. Improve your well-being and safety in yourself by taking control of your own health!
- Holland, K. (2016). Menopause and Urinary Incontinence. [online] Healthline. Available
at: https://www.healthline.com/health/menopause/urinary-incontinence#overview1 [Accessed 2 Nov. 2017].
- Alwaysdiscreet.com. (2017). Why Menopause Can Mean Urinary Incontinence. [online] Available at: https://alwaysdiscreet.com/en-us/incontinence-advice-support/all-aboutincontinence/menopause-and-urinary-incontinence [Accessed 2 Nov. 2017].