Why Do I Leak Urine When I Exercise?

The benefits of exercise are plentiful. It makes you feel good, improves your heart function, keeps your muscles strong, and your joints moving. You may even enjoy socializing while you exercise if you golf or play pickleball, or even just walk with a friend. 

But, if you find that exercise causes some urinary incontinence, you may find yourself avoiding it. Dr. Daniel Esteves and his team understand the many ways urinary incontinence can limit your life, and we offer treatments that can help.

The cause of urine leaks during exercise

The most common type of urinary incontinence is called stress incontinence, and it happens whenever you do something that puts pressure on your bladder. For some women, that extra pressure happens when they cough or sneeze. For others, it happens when you lift something heavy, like weights at the gym, or when your foot strikes the ground when you’re running. 

The underlying cause of stress incontinence is weak pelvic floor muscles. These muscles hold your bladder in place, and as you get older, they can become weaker and allow urine to leak.

Other reasons you may have weak pelvic floor muscles include: 

Another type of urinary incontinence that could contribute to your issue is called urge incontinence. When you have urge incontinence you have a sudden, overwhelming need to go to the bathroom, and you may not be able to make it in time. 

Urge incontinence happens when the nerves and muscles in your bladder don’t work together as they should.

Exercising without worry

If urinary incontinence has you feeling trapped, you should know that there are effective treatments. It’s important to get help sooner instead of later because earlier treatments tend to be more beneficial, and because you don’t want to go without regular exercise for too long. 

Our team can show you exercises that can strengthen your pelvic floor muscles. The longer you practice these exercises, the stronger your muscles become and the less likely they are to let urine leak. 

We can also help you identify specific lifestyle changes that may help. For example, setting a regular bathroom schedule or avoiding specific substances such as caffeine could help. 

These interventions take time, of course; you can’t stop the leaks with only a couple of sets of pelvic floor muscle exercises. It’s important to continue exercising as you work toward a solution in order to maintain your overall health. You may find wearing an absorbent pad while you exercise to be helpful, and you may want to take an extra change of clothes, just in case. 

Other treatments

If lifestyle intervention and pelvic floor exercises aren’t enough, you may need additional therapies. You may benefit from medication or surgery. It’s important to have guidance from a highly trained medical professional such as Dr. Esteves in order to get the most appropriate treatment for your specific situation. 

Don’t let urinary incontinence hold you back. Schedule an appointment at our office in Lawrenceville, Georgia today!

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