3 Steps to a Confident Bladder

  1. Know your triggers
  2. Anticipate your urges
  3. Send your bladder a calming message

Know your triggers

Identify the events that make feel you need to pee, even when your bladder isn’t full. Some common urge triggers include:

  • Arriving home
  • Hearing running water
  • Feeling anxious

Anticipate your urges

Get ahead of your triggers by sending a calming message to your bladder BEFORE you have an unnecessary urge to pee. For example, if you know you always have an urge to pee when you get home, use the technique below while you’re still in the car.

Send your bladder a calming message

Gently tighten and release* your pelvic muscles 4 or 5 times before the urge trigger. A few gentle squeezes will signal your brain to tell your bladder to be calm, and to ignore the upcoming trigger.

* Tighten and release cueing is NOT about exercise or strengthening your pelvic muscles! Think of this as a communication trick for your bladder, like pressing a pause button.

The 8 by 8 Myth

How much water should I drink? 8 ounces of water 8 times a day isn’t necessarily right for everyone. The amount of water a person needs in a day actually depends on:

body type

activity level

the weather

A general guide is to drink when thirsty, and drink enough to make about a cup of pee every 3-4 hours.

Avoid the Double Void

Double void: when you come back to the toilet right after peeing.

  • This is actually unnecessary
  • The bladder is constantly refilling during the day but only needs to be emptied when it’s full

To avoid the double void, contract your pelvic muscles a few times, very gently, after you’re done peeing. This sends a message from your brain to your bladder that it’s time to hold.

Wetting your whistle without bloating your bladder

When your mouth feels dry, do grab something to drink? Hold on! Just because your mouth is dry doesn’t mean your body needs water. Remember, drinking to combat dry mouth can lead to an over-filled bladder.

  • Use lip gloss or chap stick (especially in winter) to keep your lips hydrated
  • Suck on ice chips to wet your mouth
  • Consider an over-the-counter oral hydrating product to relieve more severe dry mouth symptoms

What color should my pee be?

Yellow Pee Colorless Pee Orange or
Amber Pee
Is healthy You may be drinking more water than your body needs You may be dehydrated

The 20-Second Rule

On average, you should pee:

  • Every 3-4 hours
  • 20 second long pee stream (about 1 cup of liquid)

Which pad is right for me?

The main difference between menstrual pads and bladder control pads is the type of fluid they’re designed to absorb.

Menstrual Pads

  • Absorb a slow flow
  • Designed for blood not urine
  • Urine rolls off rather than being pulled in

Bladder Control Pads

  • Absorb a faster outflow of liquid
  • Made with special materials that pull urine away from skin and into pad
  • Changes the PH of urine so less odor
  • Like menstrual pads, available in a variety of sizes, lengths, and absorbencies

It may not seem possible, but with the right materials, thin pads get the job done. If you need a little extra assurance, choose from the incontinence-style products.

The bladder and its urges

The following two animations will teach you how your bladder works, about your bladder urges, as well as ways to control those urges.