All moms do it. At least half of women do. Did you know that one in every two women have urinary incontinence symptoms. Yes. Fifty percent of women experience peeing their pants! While this is extremely common, it isn’t normal. There’s actually a solution to your problem! I find this statistic oddly comforting in the fact that you aren’t alone. There really is comfort in numbers. Many women laugh when you mention peeing your pants because they too are experiencing the same thing.
The other day I was sitting at my son’s baseball game and was talking to another mom on the team. We were talking about our careers and she asked what I did. When she heard “women’s health” and “pelvic floor issues” she started laughing. “Once I heard you say pelvic floor issues I laughed because I just told my husband on the way here tonight that I peed my pants today.”
Something I often see on social media is moms talking about how it’s normal to pee your pants after having kids, or that their moms deal with it too and it’s completely normal. Common, yes. Or I’ll see/hear, “Jump on the trampoline with my kids?! Yeah right!”
But wouldn’t that be so fun?!
Most often this is an embarrassing subject for women and rightly so. No one wants to go around having to wear pads (thank you to the creator of those!), walking around having a stash of underwear in their purse, or wearing black pants to every workout! It’s embarrassing and inconvenient.
So what’s normal?
Normal urinary function is:
- Being able to control the stop and start of urine.
- Being able to control the urge to urinate. (Not losing control or peeing when you feel the urge to pee.)
- Being able to hold your urine when coughing, sneezing, laughing, jumping, exercising, running.
- Increased urinary urgency in the first and third trimester of pregnancy. This is increased urge, not loss of control.
Do you find yourself crossing your legs, holding yourself, bending over, or whatever it takes to prevent yourself from peeing? Keep reading.
We often hear women say, “it’s not really a problem for me.” Peeing just a little bit each time or every once in a while means there is a reason behind it. At this time in your life, you should always have control over your bladder. While pads are an extremely helpful and wonderful lifeline, they shouldn’t be the norm. Leaking may not be troublesome for you now, however if nothing is done, the problem is most likely going to worsen.
In fact, 92% of women with incontinence at 12 weeks postpartum will still have incontinence five years later. What does this mean? It isn’t going to resolve on its own. Incontinence is the second most common reason (after dementia) for admission into assisted living facilities. This staggering statistic can be drastically reduced and even prevented.
Questions to ask yourself:
- Can you control the urge to pee? Do you rush to the bathroom or feel an increased urge to pee with certain activities? (i.e. pulling into the driveway, turning off the car, turning on water, or turning the door handle?)
- Do you go to the bathroom several times a day?
- Do you feel you have emptied my bladder after urinating?
- Do you drink less so you don’t pee as much, but find yourself peeing just as much if not more?
- Do you leak urine when you laugh, cough, sneeze, jump, squat, or exercise?
- Do you have a constant feeling of always needing to go?
- Are you pregnant?
- Did you just have a baby?
Did you answer “yes” to one or more of these questions?
An assessment with a women’s health/pelvic health physical therapist is warranted. A pelvic health physical therapist can help you find the root cause of your leaking and provide solutions to a leak free life!
If you’d like to learn more about the management and solutions of urinary incontinence I have a free guide just for you!
In this guide you will find even more valuable information regarding urinary incontinence to reduce any anxiety you may have about your current condition and give you hope that there is a solution!
You deserve to live leak free life. Please feel free to reach out if you have additional questions or concerns!
Lee, D. (2017). Diastasis rectus abdominis: A clinical guide for those who are split down in the middle. Surrey, BC, Canada: Learn with Diane Lee.
Romano, M., Cacciatore, A., Giordano, R., & La Rosa, B. (2010). Postpartum period: three distinct but continuous phases. Journal of prenatal medicine, 4(2), 22–25.