Healthy Bladder and Pelvic Floor Habits

How many times should I pee (void) during the day or night?
  • With average drinking (see below) 5-7 times in 24 hours is average, with 1 time at night acceptable.
  • You should be able to pee every 2-3 hours without feeling strong urge / urgency.
  • Avoid developing bad bladder habits by never waiting longer than 4 hours between voids.

Should I drink 8-10 glasses of water a day plus other fluids? Everyone needs different amounts of fluids depending on body type, activity level and environment.

The simplest way to know if you are drinking enough fluid is to look in the toilet

  • Lemon or straw colored just right
  • Clear – you may be over drinking and end up peeing more often
  • Dark yellow – you may need more fluids as concentrated urine can be a bladder irritant.

I have been told to stop drinking coffee because of my bladder – why?
  • Certain foods/fluids can be an irritant to the bladder causing leakage, increased frequency, increased urge or urgency but EVERYONE IS DIFFERENT.
    • You need to pay attention to how your body reacts
    • Test if there is an effect by avoiding the food / fluid for 5 days and then going back on it.
    • Then you decide what effect it has on you and what you are willing to do.
  • Common foods/fluids to test:
    • Coffee/tea/carbonated beverages
    • Aspartame/alcohol
    • Fruits high in citric acid – oranges, tomatoes, etc./spicy food

Is there a correct way to go to void (pee)? YES, YES, YES
  • Sit all the way down on the toilet with feet on the ground
    • Avoid perching, crouching or hovering which make complete emptying difficult
  • Knees should be wide apart to allow good alignment
  • Relax completely – it takes less than a minute – watch you are not holding your breath

What if I don’t feel empty? Try one of these:
  • Double Void
    • Strong pelvic floor contraction and relax completely/breathe and feel pelvic floor open
  • Rock and Roll
    • While sitting relaxed, rock side to side and front to back.

Is it a good idea to go “just in case” to help avoid leaking or needing to find a toilet? NO, NO, NO
  • The ‘just in case’ habit is very common but is not effective and has the bad impact of teaching the bladder to empty smaller and smaller (or with less volume).

Should I delay peeing when I feel an urge to go? YES
  • Urge is normal and occurs like in a wave many times during the day and between voids. Urgency is not normal when defined as the sudden uncontrollable desire to pee that cannot be put off (International Continence Society definition) due to the sensation (severe) or leakage occurs.
  • Yes, you can and should delay peeing if it is less than 2 hours since you last voided.