Tag Archives: Bladder irritants

Tips for Dealing with Incontinence During the Winter

Posted by on January 13, 2015 under BladderMatters | Be the First to Comment

Bladder leakage cold

Originally posted by the Live Confidently team on LiveConfidently.com

With the winter months quickly approaching, many people who experience urge or stress incontinence may notice an uptick in bladder leakage issues. There was never a clear link between incontinence and cold weather until a 2005 study by Whittington Hospital in London found that cold temperatures were a major factor in increased urinary incontinence. The study showed that this could be for two reasons: one, because our bodies don’t sweat out excess moisture during colder months, and two, because cold weather induces bladder muscle overactivity and causes us to feel the urge to go more often.

Whatever the case, there are a few tips you can follow to make sure that you are prepared and ready to take on incontinence when the temperature drops.

Decrease your intake of caffeinated beverages. Coffee and other hot beverages that contain caffeine, like tea and hot chocolate, can stimulate the bladder and also act as a diuretic. It’s best to stick to water or non-caffeinated beverages such as apple cider or peppermint tea.

Use the bathroom before you leave the house. This will ensure that your bladder is empty and will prevent you from having to remove bulky winter layers to use the restroom.

Keep moving and wear a jacket. This will help to keep your body warm and your bladder muscles from tensing up.

Find the right protection. For a true sense of ease, it’s best to find the right incontinence products for your specific needs. If you’re not sure where to start, our Incontinence Product Selector is a helpful tool that can guide you in the right direction.

Do you have any tips to add? Head over to our living with incontinence forum to discuss this topic with people just like you!

5 Health Benefits of Drinking Water in the Morning

Posted by on March 14, 2013 under Resources | 5 Comments to Read

Trying to boost your metabolism?  How about fighting off infection?  The answer could be as close as the kitchen sink.  A glass of water in the morning (don’t worry, you can still have coffee!) brings amazing health benefits – from purifying your colon to increasing blood cell production!  Here are 5 surprising health advantages of drinking water in the morning:

5_advantages_of_drinking_water#5 – Increased nutrient absorption: Drinking water on an empty stomach purifies the colon, making it easier for your body to absorb nutrients.

#4 – New cell production: Our blood is composed of about 83% water, while lean muscle tissue is approximately 75% water.  Early morning water consumption increases the daily production of new blood and muscle cells.

#3 – Increased weight loss:  Believe it or not, your body works a little bit harder to raise your core temperature when you consume something cold. Drinking at least 16 ounces of chilled water in the morning can boost your daily metabolism by up to 24%!

#2. Clear, moisturized skin:  It’s no coincidence that it’s called the “fountain” of youth.  Water helps to purge toxins from the blood, which helps keep your skin glowing, moisturized and clear.  This gives you a more youthful appearance, and over time visibly reduces signs of aging.

#1. Balanced lymph system: Your lymph nodes act as filters for foreign particles and are important in the proper functioning of the immune system.  Lymph fluids circulate throughout the body, helping you perform multiple daily functions – including balancing your bodily fluids and fighting off infection.

waterdropWhat’s better for you, cold water or room-temperature water?  Both cold water and lukewarm water have health benefits.  Drinking cold water increases the number of calories you burn, in turn raising your metabolism, because your body has to work harder to return to normal temperature.   However, room-temperature water can be absorbed more quickly into your system.

lemon2Should you add lemon to your water?  Adding freshly-squeezed lemon or lime juice – or a slice of orange – can add a hint of flavor without the calories.  Some people also believe that adding lemon juice to their water increases their vitamin and mineral consumption.  To an extent, that’s correct: home-grown, organic lemons have a higher vitamin and mineral content than store-bought lemons, and often contain calcium, magnesium and potassium along with high levels of vitamin C. However, if you’re sensitive to an acidic diet, consistently adding citric acid to your water could be detrimental to your overall health.  Citric acid is a known bladder irritant, and can erode teeth enamel more quickly.

questionmarkCan you drink too much water?  If you’re worried about drinking too much water, then you’ve heard about hyponatremia – meaning “low sodium in the blood.” This occurs when someone drinks enormous amounts of water and/or loses too much salt from the body within a short period of time – like a marathon runner pounding one or two gallons of water without adding electrolytes, for example.  Hyponatremia is rare, and doesn’t happen when a healthy person spreads his or her water intake over the course of the full day.

Cold or warm, pure or with a slice of citrus – there are plenty of ways to stay hydrated!  Far more important than temperature or citrus is making sure you’re getting enough fluids.  Wondering how much water is enough? For the average healthy adult in a moderate climate, sufficient daily fluid intake for men is about 13 cups, and for women is about 9 cups.  This may souns like a lot, but keep in mind that up to 20% of our fluid intake can be drawn from the food we eat – especially moisture-rich foods such as fresh fruits and vegetables.  A great rule of thumb is the 8-8 rule: Drink at least 8 8oz glasses of fluids (preferably water) a day, starting first thing in the morning, and you’ll be in a healthy range.

Don’t forget that many other factors can affect your sufficient fluid intake, such as climate, elevation, exercise, breast feeding, and medications or certain medical conditions.  For more information on these factors, check out this article from the Mayo Clinic: http://mayocl.in/UkbZD.  If you have medical questions about your daily fluid intake, check first with your primary care physician.

For more health information and home health care products, visit our resources blog on TotalHomeCareSupplies.com.


Aww, Nuts! 6 Surprising Foods Irritating Your Bladder

Posted by on February 21, 2013 under Resources | 2 Comments to Read

Top 6 Bladder Irritants

Woman buying groceries, Image courtesy of Ambro / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of Ambro / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Bladder irritants include any foods or beverages that contain ingredients which increase the acidity of your urine.  These foods and beverages, including caffeinated drinks, alcoholic beverages, and highly acidic foods, can cause further irritation in areas of the bladder and urethra that are already inflamed.

While many people may not be bothered by highly acidic urine, for those managing incontinence, catheterization, urostomies or other medical issues, an irritated bladder can be a very serious issue.

That’s why we’ve composed a list of these top acidic food and beverage culprits.  Some you might have guessed; others may surprise you!  Read on to see what parts of your diet may be contributing to your irritated bladder:

1. Carbonated beverages:  Drinks such as sodas and carbonated water fall into this category.  The Alternative: No surprise here – spring water is what your body needs!  Good for everything from your skin to your kidneys, water also dilutes uric acid to soothe an irritated bladder.  For a little extra flavor, try adding a slice or zest of orange or limes.

 2. Processed meats: (especially those containing nitrates): Spicy, processed and smoked meats fall into this category, including hotdogs, sausages, and meats with peppery marinades or sauces.  The Alternative: fresh and mild-flavored meats have a generally soothing effect on the bladder, including fresh turkey, chicken, fish, beef and lamb.

 3. Aged and processed cheeses:  Hard aged cheeses like Parmesan and Asiago and “stinky” cheeses like Blue and Roquefort , as well as chemicals in processed cheeses such as American Cheese slices or Cheez Whiz, can all irritate the bladder.  The Alternative: Mild cheeses such as mozzarella, feta, ricotta and mild cheddar are gentle on the bladder.  Cream cheese and cottage cheese also fall into this “soothing” category.

 4. Acidic or spicy vegetables and fruits: Tomatoes, hot peppers, pickles, raw onions, pineapple, cranberries, and citrus fruits and juices such as orange, grapefruit and lemon are the biggest culprits.  The Alternative:  Tolerance to acids in fruits varies greatly, so trial-and-error may be the best way to determine which fruits you can tolerate.  Blueberries, strawberries, pears and honeydew melon are especially low-acid and are a good place to start.  Vegetables like avocados, asparagus, broccoli, squash, cauliflower, cucumber, green beans, kale, spinach, and most salad greens can soothe an irritated bladder.

 5. Nuts:  Surprisingly, most nuts fall into this category, though tolerance varies from person to person.  The Alternative: Almonds, cashews, pine nuts and sunflower seeds are healthy and soothing nut choices for those with sensitive bladders.

 6. Coffee, Tea, Alcohol and artificial sweeteners:  Unfortunately, some of our favorite indulgences are also highly acidic and irritating to the bladder.  The worst culprits are coffee (both caffeinated and decaffeinated), beer, wine, black or green teas (hot and iced), and beverages containing high amounts of artificial sweeteners.  The Alternative:  Low acid coffees, which are “treated” to reduce the acid.  Very dark roasts are naturally low-acid as well.  Rum, vodka and gin may be easier on the bladder than beer or wine, and herbal teas – particularly chamomile and peppermint – are usually ok.  Natural sweeteners such as sugar, brown sugar, honey and maple syrup are best, but artificial sweeteners like Splenda and Stevia are more gentle than Nutrasweet, Aspartame or Saccharine.

For more information on bladder matters, visit our blog on totalhomecaresupplies.com!  For incontinence or urological supplies, visit our online store at www.TotalHomeCareSupplies.com.

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