Urinary incontinence or loss of bladder control can be experienced by expecting mothers during and after childbirth. Incontinence, in general, can be due to many reasons but pregnant women most commonly experience it while laughing, coughing, sneezing, etc. This type of incontinence is called stress incontinence because the activities mentioned put pressure on the bladder.
Incontinence during the maternity period occurs when the muscles and tissues around the opening of the bladder become weak. Leakage happens when there is pressure on the bladder and the opening of the bladder does not stay closed. Childbirth weakens the pelvic floor muscles, which can cause an overactive bladder. Pregnancy and delivery can lead to a weak bladder as a result of these conditions:
• Damage to the nerves controlling the bladder.
• The fact that the urethra and bladder have moved during pregnancy.
• An episiotomy, a cut made in the pelvic floor muscle during the delivery of the baby to allow passage easily.
Urinary incontinence after delivery can be frustrating. So read on how to easily control your bladder.
Kegel exercises can be done to manage urinary incontinence after delivering your baby. These exercises help tighten and strengthen the muscles of the pelvis. Strengthening the pelvic muscles improves the function of the urethra too. To perform these exercises you first have to find the Kegel muscles.
For this, you can sit on the toilet and begin urinating. Then stop urinating mid-stream. The muscles that you use to stop to prevent the flow of urine are the Kegel muscles or Pelvic floor muscles.
Now, for performing the strengthening exercise, do the following:
• Keep your abdominal, thigh, and buttock muscles relaxed.
• Make sure your bladder is empty.
• Tighten the Kegel muscles.
• Hold the muscles and count to 10.
• Relax the muscles and count to 10.
Do five to ten sets of Kegel exercises thrice a day. They can be done anytime and anywhere. Kegel exercises give positive results in four to six weeks.
Another effective method to control urinary incontinence is Bladder Training. The goal of bladder training is to gradually increase the amount of time between emptying your bladder and the amount of fluids your bladder can hold.
As an example, you can follow the routine given below to manage urinary incontinence:
This method is widely used for handling urinary incontinence. It is recommended by the British Medical Journal as one of the foremost steps for bladder management since it is non-invasive and self-taught.
Certain medications like Hyoscyamine sulfates help in managing urinary incontinence. Sometimes devices can be used to block the urethra or increase the strength of pelvic muscles. But, you should first discuss this with your doctor.
If you continue experiencing urinary incontinence six weeks after delivery, talk to your doctor. Treating bladder control is essential and you should eliminate any other risks or reasons which could be causing it.