Most of us don’t spend a lot of time thinking about our bladders unless it’s really, uncomfortably full. Because we only think about our bladders when we have to pee, we never think about the good or bad habits we’re establishing. Check out the lists below to see what bad habits you should be avoiding and what good habits to start implementing.
Bad Bladder Habits:
“Just in Case” peeing: How often as a child were you told to “go try” before leaving for a big car ride or before we go somewhere with questionable cleanliness of the bathrooms? How often do we still apply those habits to our daily life? We pee before we leave the house. We pee when we get to our destination. We see a bathroom and we think “I should probably go ahead and use it - just in case”. We try one more time before bed, just to make sure we don’t have to get up in the middle of the night. Our bladders are very habitual. When we start making these habits of going on a very frequent (and not necessary) basis, our bladder starts telling our brains that we have to go, even when our bladder isn’t full, sometimes when our bladder is barely full (nervous pee, anyone?). We will get more into what’s normal and what we can do later. Suffice to say, just in case peeing is bad. Just don’t do it.
Hovering: Let’s set the stage: you’re on a big road trip to the beach, you’ve had the Big Gulp 44 oz Diet Coke, and now have a very full bladder. It always happens in the middle-of-nowhere Alabama, right? You pull over to the next gas station and it’s... disgusting. You can’t wait any longer so grit your teeth and decide to just do it. You’ll just squat and hover over the toilet and avoid all the germs. No problem, right? Wrong. The pelvic floor is considered part of our postural muscles and will always be working at least a little bit when we are upright. When we hover to pee, we aren’t allowing the pelvic floor to fully relax, thereby requiring the bladder to just force the urine out. Urination should be a passive process in which we relax and we empty the bladder.