Urinary incontinence is twice as likely to affect a woman than a man. One of the reasons is because pregnancy and delivery affect a woman’s bladder and other supporting muscles. In fact, as many as four in ten women experience urinary incontinence during pregnancy, and some new mothers continue having this problem after giving birth.
At Holistic OB/GYN & Midwifery in Passaic Park, New Jersey, we understand the importance of compassion when dealing with this sensitive issue. We help women through pregnancy, childbirth, and beyond by building lasting relationships and using a holistic approach to total wellness.
Your bladder is a round organ that is above your pelvic bones. Your urethra is a tube that connects to your bladder, and it allows urine to flow out. As your bladder fills with urine, the bladder muscles relax while the sphincter muscles keep your bladder closed until you’re ready to urinate.
Additionally, your brain receives signals from the nerves in your bladder, so you know when you need to go to the bathroom and relieve yourself. All of your nerves, organs, and muscles work together, so the bladder functions properly.
Urinary incontinence happens when you involuntarily release urine. Some women deal with this delicate issue during pregnancy or as they age. Some women even have what’s called “stress incontinence,” which is a type of incontinence that can be experienced during and after pregnancy. In this case, the bladder sphincter has lost some function due to the constant increase in pressure, making it difficult to hold in urine.
You may have incontinence if you:
Your bladder may stop functioning correctly after giving birth. When you’re pregnant, the growing baby can put increasing pressure on your pelvic structures and make you need to urinate more frequently and with more urgency. Usually, this loss of bladder control is regained a few weeks after the birth of your baby.
Some women, however, remain incontinent for much longer after delivery. This is because vaginal delivery impacts the pelvic floor muscles and the nerves that affect bladder control. Pelvic muscles weaken and stretch during and after pregnancy, which can cause a loss of bladder control. Cesarean section deliveries may have a lower risk of incontinence, but this kind of delivery presents problems of its own. You can’t prevent urinary incontinence after birth, but you can use our holistic approach to treat the problem, one is biofeedback / pelvic floor therapy.
If you’re still experiencing incontinence more than six weeks after giving birth, it’s time to make an appointment with Holistic OB/GYN & Midwifery for a comprehensive exam and treatment plan. A treatment plan may include Kegel exercises, bladder training exercises, or lifestyle changes. To learn more, book an appointment online or over the phone today.