November is not only the start of the holiday season, but also marks the beginning of National Bladder Health Month in the U.S.
While bathroom breaks are a common and essential function in daily life, many people find it hard to talk openly about their bladder health with their doctor. By raising awareness and giving people the courage to discuss their bladder health symptoms with medical professionals, we can overcome the stigma that’s commonly associated with bladder-related conditions such as overactive bladder, urinary tract infections and urinary incontinence.
In observation of Bladder Health Month, here are three essential tips to maintain a healthy and happy bladder.
Drinking plenty of water is essential for overall body performance, but it’s especially important when it comes to maintaining healthy bladder function. Adults are recommended to drink eight cups of water per day, equal to about half a gallon. Staying hydrated ensures regular bladder activity, which is good for the bladder long-term. Some drinks, such as sodas, citrus juices and alcoholic beverages, can irritate the bladder or increase the frequency of urination, so it’s best to limit consuming these types of beverages.
Staying active is crucial to maintaining a healthy weight, but it also plays a role in overall bladder health. Exercise helps relieve bladder inflammation symptoms and general bladder pain, while Kegel exercises can help strengthen the bladder muscles and reduce the accidental leaking of urine (known as urinary incontinence).
Don’t hold back
Whether it’s during an important meeting, while taking a final exam or in the movie theater right as the killer is about to be revealed on screen, sometimes nature calls at the most inconvenient moments. But holding your urine for extended periods of time weakens the bladder and can even potentially lead to the development of a bladder infection. To maintain a healthy bladder, it’s recommended to urinate every three to four hours. It’s also important to monitor the frequency of your bathroom breaks, as well as report any new symptoms, such as painful urination or bleeding while urinating, to a physician or urology specialist as soon as possible to prevent developing bladder problems.
If you or a family member have noticed a change in bladder health, visit a Midwest Express Clinic location nearest you for a consultation with one of our experienced physicians. Walk-ins and online appointments are available at all clinic locations. For more information, visit midwestexpressclinic.com.