Trouble with bladder control can be a huge cloud hanging over your life. Whether it’s causing you to wake up multiple times per night or causing sudden urges throughout the day, it feels like it’s holding you hostage.
Bladder control problems can have a number of causes. But at the end of the day, it feels like they can all hold you hostage. This causes fear whenever you leave the house if you have the confidence to leave the house at all.
Often treated with medication, urinary incontinence can also be managed by certain lifestyle modifications. One of the most effective may be identifying potential food and beverage triggers that can help improve your situation.
There are a number of foods, drinks, and compounds that cause bladder irritation and create a sense of urgency to get to the toilet. Some of the common ones include:
- Coffee, tea, carbonated drinks (even when caffeine-free)
- Certain acidic fruits like oranges, grapefruit, lemon, limes, fruit juices
- Spicy foods
- Tomatoes and tomato-based products
- Carbonated drinks
- Raw onions
These are just a selection of bladder irritants that promote problems with bladder control. There are many more. Cooked onion and other foods, however, can be seamless alternatives.
One way to identify which, if any, are impacting you would be to practice an elimination diet. Cut each out for about a week (at the same time) then slowly re-introduce them into your diet one by one. Pay attention to any changes in urinary urges.
Another thing you can do is carefully manage fluid consumption.
If you drink a lot of beverages at once—say, if you have a coffee, orange juice, and water every morning—cut a couple out. Too much liquid too quickly can overwhelm the bladder and lead to frequent urges to pee that can linger for hours.
You can also try to split liquid consumption into designated times during the day. Having 16 ounces with meals or 8 oz between meals can help ease the burden on your bladder.
If daytime urination isn’t much of a concern but you’re getting up multiple times per night, create a complimentary schedule. Consume beverages in the morning and afternoon while severely limiting drinks in the evening.
Lastly, remember liquid isn’t only drunk, you also eat it. Fruit, soups, and salads are all loaded with water, so factor that into your consumption pattern.
Managing a bladder control problem is never easy, but you might have more power than you think!