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Bladder Retraining

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Bladder Retraining

Bladder training can be effective in the treatment of urge incontinence, mixed incontinence and urgency-frequency syndromes. It consists of a combination of strategies to control urgency and a program of scheduled urination with gradually increasing intervals. Bladder training can give women a way to reclaim control over their bladder function. Another way to think of it is "potty training for adults."

The first step is to make a record of your baseline bladder control. That's done by keeping a bladder diary. This diary will establish your baseline fluid intake; number of leakage episodes; and urinary frequency (amount of time between trips to the bathroom). Next, you decide on your initial scheduled voiding interval. If your bladder diary shows that you go to the bathroom every hour or less, your scheduled voiding interval will start at 30 minutes. If your bladder diary indicates more than one hour between your bathroom breaks, then your first interval will be one hour.

Once you establish your initial voiding schedule, follow these instructions:

  • Void every morning as soon as you wake up and every evening just before going to sleep.
  • Void every time your schedule says you should - regardless of whether you think you need to.
  • Make every effort to put off urinating - even if you have a very strong urge to do so - until your scheduled time comes up.
  • You only need to follow the schedule while you are awake. No scheduled urination is necessary during sleeping hours.
  • If you absolutely have to interrupt your schedule, get back on track (with the next scheduled void) as soon as possible.
  • Keep a daily record of your urination and leakage episodes, so that you can track your progress.
  • When the initial schedule gets easy for you (i.e. when you virtually always make it to your scheduled time without difficulty), increase your interval by 30 minutes.
  • Stay on a given interval for at least one week before increasing.
  • Aim for a goal of minimal to no accidents and a voiding schedule of between two to four hours. Getting there should take you anywhere from four to 12 weeks.
  • You may find it easier to be successful with your bladder training if you go on the "bladder diet" at the same time.

If you feel as though you are about to have an accident before your scheduled time to urinate, focus on something else to make the urge go away. Count backwards from 100 by seven's; Sit down or lie down; get on the phone with a friend; perform several strong Kegel exercises.

 

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Atlantic Medical Group
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Morristown Medical Center

100 Madison Avenue
Morristown, NJ 07960
973-971-5000

Overlook Medical Center

99 Beauvoir Avenue
Summit, NJ 07901
908-522-2000

Newton Medical Center

175 High Street
Newton, NJ 07860
973-383-2121

Chilton Medical Center

97 West Parkway
Pompton Plains, NJ 07444
973-831-5000

Hackettstown Medical Center

651 Willow Grove Street
Hackettstown, NJ 07840
908-852-5100

Goryeb Children's Hospital

100 Madison Avenue
Morristown, NJ 07960
973-971-5000

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Atlantic Medical Group

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1-800-247-9580