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HealthSheets™

Pelvic Wellness Program

 

URINARY INCONTINENCE EDUCATION AND SELF-HELP

 

Dietary Bladder Irritants

The following foods and beverages may irritate your bladder.  Bladder irritants may exacerbate or act as a trigger to worsen the symptoms of incontinence.

 

 The following foods cause worsening of symptoms in MOST people:

  • Nicotine

  • Chocolate

  • Caffeinated Soda

  • Tea

  • Coffee (some people even find decaffeinated coffee irritating)

  • Alcohol

The following foods cause worsening of symptoms in SOMEpeople:

  • Milk or milk products

  • Citrus fruit and fruit juices (orange, grapefruit, tomato)

  • Tomatoes and tomato products

  • Highly spicy foods (Jalapeno, spicy tomato, hot sauce)

  • Sugars (raw sugar, corn syrup, honey, artificial sweeteners)

  • Carbonated beverages (with or without caffeine)

The following foods and beverages are often NOT IRRITATING to the bladder:

  • Grape juice

  • Cranberry juice (some people find cranberry juice irritating)

  • Cherry juice

  • Apple juice

  • Prunes

  • Plums

 

Fluid Intake

Reducing your fluid intake will result in the urine becoming more concentrated and will further irritate the bladder.  This will result in more symptoms of frequency and/or urgency.  You should be consuming _____ ounces of fluid per day (which is about _____ cups).  Caffeinated and alcoholic beverages do not count toward this amount of fluid because these substances dehydrate the body.  Of this total fluid intake, two-thirds should consist of water.  Therefore, you should be consuming _____ ounces of water per day or about _____ cups.  Fluid intake should always be spaced throughout the day.

 

Decreasing bladder irritants and obtaining the proper amount of fluid will improve your overall bladder health and result in a decrease in symptoms of frequency, urgency, and incontinence.

 

Medications

The following is a list of medications that may cause temporary incontinence or make existing incontinence worse:

  •  Diuretics:   cause more urine to be produced and may create frequency and urgency
  • Sedatives, Hypnotics, and Alcohol:  cause sedation and drowsiness and may cause leakage before getting to the toilet
  • Pain Relievers:  act similarly to sedatives, hypnotics, and alcohol
  • Antihistamines / Anticholinergics / Cold remedies / Antipsychotics/ Antidepressants:  may cause urine retention from relaxation of the bladder and/or increased strength of the bladder outlet muscles
  • Calcium Channel Blockers
  • Anti-Parkinsonian Agents