TikTok user warns why people shouldn't pee 'just in case'

Woman warns people not to pee ‘just in case’ before they leave the house if they don’t need to – insisting that it can ‘sensitize the bladder’ and retrain the body to go more frequently

  • TikTok user Sabrina shared the warning in a viral video last week 
  • She said that urinating ‘just in case’ once in a while is fine, but it shouldn’t become a frequent habit
  • If it does, the bladder learns to go when it’s just partially full, creating the urge to urinate more frequently
  • In this case, people need to ‘retrain’ their bladder, and can do so by doing pelvic floor exercises to stave off urination 

A TikTok user is warning others not to make a habit of urinating ‘just in case’ every time they leave the house because it can train the body to need to urinate more frequently.

A woman named Sabrina shared the urinary health lesson on TikTok last week, explaining why the extra-cautious bathroom habit could be harmful.

While it’s fine to urinate ‘just in case’ — as in, when one doesn’t really feel the urge — before a long car ride or after sex, doing so all the time can confuse the body into needing to urinate when the bladder isn’t full.

Don’t! A woman is warning others not to make a habit of urinating ‘just in case’ every time they leave the house because it can train the body to need to urinate more frequently (stock image)

Rethink! A woman named Sabrina shared the urinary health lesson on TikTok last week, explaining why the extra-cautious bathroom habit could be harmful

no more peeing just in case!!!!!! #pelvichealth #pelvicfloortherapy #bladderhealth #urinaryincontinence

‘Let’s talk [about] what happens when you pee “just in case,”‘ she says in her viral video, which had been viewed 1.2 million times so far.

‘It like, when you’re about to leave the house, and you’re like, “I don’t really have to pee, but I may have to pee, so I’m gonna go pee,”‘ she goes on.

‘Once in a while, no big deal. If you do this often, your bladder is never filling up properly. It’s not filling to full capacity.

‘You’re peeing when it’s halfway full. So you may have the urge to pee more frequently, because it’s only filling halfway and it’s going, “Ding ding ding, I have to go pee right now.”

‘You’re essentially sensitizing your bladder to go at lower volumes than needed, and then your body gets used to that, so it’s hard to get out of that. It’s a habit.

‘So this is when we have to retrain your bladder. 

Heather Jeffcoat, DPT, a Los Angeles–based physical therapist with an emphasis in pelvic floor health, confirmed Sabrina’s warning to BuzzFeed. 

‘When the neurologic connection between the bladder and the pelvic floor becomes dysfunctional, instead of the pelvic floor contracting to maintain continence, they relax and the bladder contracts in a setting where it is not appropriate to do so, and urinary leakage may result — in your car, in the hall on the way to the bathroom, etc.,’ she said.

‘The sweet spot [for urination] is a regular frequency of once every two to three hours. At night, you should be getting a minimum of six hours of straight sleep before your bladder wakes you up.’

For those who have already inadvertently retrained their body to urinate more frequently, Jeffcoat suggests doing kegel exercises to stave off the urge.  

She said: ‘You’re essentially sensitizing your bladder to go at lower volumes than needed, and then your body gets used to that, so it’s hard to get out of that. It’s a habit’

What are kegel exercises? 

Kegel exercises are used to strengthen the pelvic floor muscles.

Both men and women have pelvic floor muscles, and strengthening them can prevent incontinence.

Women, in particular, can see their pelvic floor muscles weaken after pregnancy and childbirth, which can lead to strong urges to urinate as well as drops of urine leaking during times of stress to the muscles, like when sneezing, laughing, or coughing. 

Most people can isolate their pelvic floor muscles by stoping urination midstream. Women can also imagine tightening their vaginas around a tampon.

Once the muscles have been isolated, practice kegels by tightening those muscles, holding it for two to three seconds, then letting go. Kegels should not engage other muscles like in the stomach or buttocks, nor should people be holding their breath.

The Mayo Clinic suggests doing at least three sets of 10 to 15 repetitions a day.

In other videos, Sabrina offered steps for people to follow when they feel the urge to urinate but know their bladder isn’t full.

First, she says, stay calm: ‘The more nervous that you get, the more likely that your bladder is going to win.’

Second, do five pelvic floor contractions, or kegels.

If the sensation to urinate doesn’t go away, then use the toilet. Holding in pee when the bladder is actually full can lead to UTIs.  

‘This information is mainly for people who are truly bothered by how often they have to pee. They don’t want to go their whole day worrying about where the bathroom is, and they want to be able to fix it,’ she said. 

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