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It’s time to forget the kegels - how to stop postpartum unwanted leaks

It’s time to forget the kegels - how to stop postpartum unwanted leaks

Have you been doing your kegels post-baby to stop unwanted urine leaks? You went for a run and came back with wet pants. When you sneeze, a little bit comes out. Sound familiar? If you have incontinence, you know how embarrassing and uncomfortable it can be. Here’s how to conquer this pesky problem. 


Do

Do communicate

Don’t be shy about talking to your doctor about this issue. It’s more common than you think. Over 18 million women suffer from incontinence and there are a variety of therapies to help regain control. 

Do consider weight loss

Extra weight can lead to leaks because it puts extra pressure on the bladder, especially when laughing, coughing, sneezing, etc. Women who are heavier tend to struggle more with incontinence and losing weight may help alleviate the issue. 

Do consider new technologies

Lifestyle changes, like losing weight, can help. New technologies, like Femilift™, a non-surgical laser treatment to stimulate, strengthen and tighten your vaginal walls, are proving to be very effective therapies. Treatment involves a 15-minute, non-invasive therapy where the wand is inserted into the vagina to deliver fractional laser energy to tighten the vagina and improve lubrication. There is no downtime, minimal risk of side effects, and patient satisfaction is high.

Do be careful when playing sports or running

Most women first notice the leakage after they’ve given birth, called stress incontinence. Physical activity then puts pressure on the bladder, causing leakage. Try to urinate right before any high impact activity to avoid accidents. 

Do limit caffeine and alcohol intake

Limit caffeine and alcohol, which make you produce more urine. You’ll be more likely to run to the washroom all day long if you imbibe in these diuretics. 


Don't

Do not cut out water

It may seem counter intuitive, but your body still needs 6-8 glasses of water a day. If you don’t stay hydrated, you may end up constipated, which can irritate the bladder. Hydrate, but try to avoid drinking after 4 PM so that you aren’t up all night.

Do not be ashamed

You’re not alone. One in four women over age 18 experience episodes of leaking urine involuntarily. It may be awkward to discuss with your doctor, but asking for help can often make things better.

Do not think kegels are you only option

Pelvic floor exercises have long been a go-to for incontinence, but many women report limited results. Ask your doctor about new non-invasive technologies that delivers fractional laser energy into the vagina to tighten and improve lubrication. It’s similar to how dermatologists stimulate collagen to tighten the skin on your face. 

Do not discount your diet

Try adding Magnesium and Vitamin D to your diet. Magnesium is an important mineral for proper muscle and nerve function and Vitamin D promotes calcium intake and good bone health. 

Do not smoke

Nicotine can irritate the bladder. Smokers tend to cough more than non-smokers and long-term, chronic coughing has been considered a risk factor for developing stress urinary incontinence.


Summary
Jumping cartoon

Bladder leaks can be embarrassing, annoying and can seem like an insurmountable inconvenience. Thanks to helpful lifestyle tips combined with the latest non-invasive technologies, women can easily kick incontinence to the curb and get on with life. 


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Photo Credits: J'Adore by John Spade vua Flickr; Check Man, Cross Man and Jump Man © ioannis kounadeas - Fotolia.com

Dr. Bruce KatzDermatologist and Director

Dr. Bruce Katz is the Clinical Professor of Dermatology at The Mount Sinai School of Medicine, Director of the Cosmetic Surgery & Laser Clinic at Mount Sinai Medical Center, and Director of the Juva Skin & Laser Center in New York. Dr. Katz, ...

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