Lifestyle Modifications for Urinary Incontinence: A Comprehensive Guide

In This Article


Marla Finch, Pelvic Floor Osteopath


August 21, 2023

Urinary incontinence, although common, can be a source of embarrassment and inconvenience for many. Fortunately, there are numerous lifestyle modifications that can significantly reduce the symptoms. This guide dives deep into transformative strategies and answers prevalent questions related to this medical condition.

Rena Malik, M.D.

The Essential Lifestyle Changes to Combat Urinary Incontinence

1. Bladder Training

Bladder training is all about gaining control. By gradually increasing the intervals between urinating, you can train your bladder to hold more urine for longer periods.

  • Example: Sarah used to rush to the bathroom every hour. With bladder training, she started by holding on for an additional 10 minutes every time she felt the urge. Over weeks, she could comfortably wait for up to three hours.

2. Watch Your Fluid Intake

Being mindful of what and when you drink can be a game-changer.

  • Example: Mike noticed that drinking coffee in the evening made his symptoms worse. By switching to herbal tea and reducing his overall caffeine intake, his nightly trips to the bathroom decreased.

3. Regular Pelvic Floor Exercises

Kegel exercises strengthen the muscles that control the flow of urine. Best Kegel Exercisers can guide you on this.

  • Example: Linda invested in a Kegel exerciser after reading about its benefits. With regular practice, not only did her incontinence improve, but she also benefited from enhanced pelvic muscle tone.

4. Double Voiding Technique

Double voiding ensures the bladder is entirely empty, reducing the risk of overflow incontinence.

  • Example: After urinating, John waits for a couple of minutes and tries again. This simple trick reduced the constant feeling of a full bladder.

5. Dietary Adjustments

Certain foods and drinks can irritate the bladder. Understanding and eliminating them can significantly improve symptoms.

  • Example: Emma realized that spicy foods and citrus fruits triggered her incontinence. A simple dietary change led to a marked improvement in her condition.

Addressing Common Questions on Urinary Incontinence

Lifestyle Modifications for Overactive Bladder

Avoiding bladder irritants like caffeine and alcohol, maintaining a healthy weight, and bladder training are essential steps. A natural remedy for overactive bladder includes consuming pumpkin seeds, which have been shown to improve bladder function.

Lifestyle Changes for Urinary Retention

Urinary retention benefits from scheduled toilet trips, double voiding, and avoiding medications that might cause retention like certain antihistamines and antidepressants.

Strategies to Promote Urinary Continence

Pelvic floor exercises, bladder training, and dietary adjustments promote continence. For comprehensive information, one can refer to the urinary incontinence handout and incontinence fact sheet available at medical clinics.

Specialized Assistance and Risks

If you ever find yourself thinking, "I am a specialist worker who can help an individual to identify a plan to manage their incontinence," it's essential to understand the common risks involved. Common risks when managing continence include urinary tract infections, skin infections, and the negative impact on emotional health.

Regarding the query, "a female with incontinence has this device placed. What is this device?" – It's often a pessary, a device inserted into the vagina to support structures that might be causing incontinence.

Remember, while lifestyle modifications are beneficial, in severe cases or when in doubt, medical interventions, such as urinary catheters, are used.


Managing urinary incontinence is a balance of understanding one's body and implementing targeted lifestyle changes. By making the modifications discussed above and staying informed, one can lead a comfortable and confident life.


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