Prevention of urinary and faecal incontinence
With healthy diet and lifestyle habits, incontinence can be prevented. The steps below can help prevent urinary incontinence and faecal incontinence. if integrated into your life style or the person you are caring for daily
1. Drink right
· Do not reduce your fluid intake because of bladder control problem. This will make your urine concentrated and complicate the problem.
· Drink 6-8 cups (1.5 – 2 litres) of fluid daily, except your doctors says otherwise.
· Spread your drinks evenly throughout the day
· During hot weather or exercise, drink more fluids especially water.
· Reduce alcohol, fizzy drinks, and caffeinated drinks because they irritate the bladder.
2. Eat healthy
· Eat plenty of fibre. It improves bowel function and helps to prevent constipation by absorbing water and adding bulk to your bowel motions (poo). Fibre food include multi grain or whole grain breads, cereals and cereal products, fruit, vegetables, legumes, nuts and seeds.
· 2 servings of fruit, 5 servings of vegetables and 5 servings of cereals and breads is recommended daily.
· When you eat diets high in fibre, drink plenty of fluid because the fibre requires water in order to bulk up your bowel motions.
3. Stay fit
· A BMI(Body Mass Index) of 25 or less should be maintained. This is because excess body fat strains the pelvic floor and can lead to bladder and bowel control problems.
· Avoid smoking. Chronic coughing which is be long term, is associated with smoking. This can weaken the muscles of your pelvic floor and lead to bladder and bowel control problems.
· Get smoking cessation plan. A help from a doctor help on how to quit smoking and on how to manage chronic cough.
4. Get good toilet habits
· Use the toilet when you get the urge. It is the best time to empty your bowels completely. How do you know when you get the urge?; Most people get the urge in the morning or after a meal.
· Maintain proper toilet sitting position; Sit correctly in the toilet. Sit with your elbows on your knees, while leaning forward. Raise your feet with a footstool in order to fully relax your pelvic floor and sphincter muscles. Bulge out your tummy, relax your back passage and let go (don’t hold your breath or strain). When you have finished firmly draw up your back passage.
· Avoid constipation as this affects bladder and bowel function.
· Avoid frequent straining of your bowels because this can stretch the pelvic floor and weaken it over time.
· don’t anticipate using the toilet ‘just in case’ – only go when you need to.
5. Get active
· Try to exercise 30 minutes daily. This can help to stimulates movement of the bowel, and even gentle exercise like walking helps
· Get your pelvic floor muscle exercises regularly done
· During pregnancy, after childbirth or heavy lifting, obesity or a chronic cough can weaken the pelvic floor.
6. Get help
Get help for incontinence or bladder and bowel problems. The symptoms will not disappear, so get help..