Do you leak urine when you cough, sneeze, laugh, jump, lift, or do double-unders? If so, you have stress incontinence. This occurs when the pressure in your abdomen increases, pushing on your bladder. Without good pelvic floor strength or control, urine escapes in response to that increased pressure, causing leakage.
The good news is that it’s treatable! So many women think that just because they’ve had kids or are older that stress incontinence is inevitable. It’s not! By working on your pelvic floor strength and endurance as well as working on how you use your breath during these activities, you can diminish the leakage.
“Kegel before you cough. Squeeze before you sneeze.” is the mantra. If you see the pressure event coming, contract your pelvic floor muscles (“Kegel”) first to counteract that downward pressure on your bladder. Crossing your legs won’t help; your inner thighs are not connected to your urethra!
For lifting, whether it’s a child, shopping bags, or weights, exhale and Kegel as you exert. By dissipating the abdominal pressure out your mouth, you put less pressure down on the bladder in the first place, decreasing your chance of leakage.
It’s never too late to prevent leakage or to treat it. I’d love to help!