Bladder Habits: Fun Facts & Healthy Habits

Bladder Habits: Fun Facts & Healthy Habits

When we’re young, our first big achievement is mastering the art of going potty. Parents are both proud and relieved, while children gain a new level of confidence and independence. However, as we move into adulthood, it is not uncommon for us to adopt some unhealthy bladder habits. These unhealthy bladder habits can cause the all-too-familiar symptom of urinary urgency and increased frequency. Here are some fun facts about what is normal and not normal for bladder habits:

1. Frequency. The normal number of times for urination is approximately 5-10 times per day and no more than 1-2 times per night. If you’re toileting more than 10 times per day, you may be training your bladder to hold less urine, causing that familiar “gotta go right now” signal to occur before the bladder is actually full.

2. No more going ‘just in case’. People tend to toilet when they don’t actually have to go, usually to accommodate their busy lifestyle or their dislike for public toilets. However, going ‘just in case’ is how the bladder learns to hold less urine. If it never gets the chance to fill, it won’t be able to hold as much urine, and you’ll find yourself frequenting the toilet too often. That first sensation to urinate is a signal and not a command. Wait for a bit (if you’re able) and allow the bladder fill up a little more. If urgency is a concern, then seeing a pelvic health physical therapist can help with that.

3. Refrain from “speed peeing”. This day in age, it’s difficult to relax much less spend precious moments in the restroom. However, when we bear down to urinate as quickly as possible, we are causing increased pressure on the pelvic floor muscles (over time, this can cause issues). Sit back. Relax. Breathe. Allow your pelvic floor muscles to release urine as they are able. A healthy urine stream should be consistent, easy to begin, and easy to stop.

4. Drink water! This seems obvious, but folks who urinate too much or struggle with urinary incontinence hesitate to stay hydrated during the day. Water can help maintain healthy bladder tissue and bladder habits. A happy bladder can hold 1.5-2 cups of urine comfortably (which is quite a bit of urine!).

5. Caffeine. No one likes to hear this, but unfortunately, coffee and caffeine can irritate the bladder. If you think your morning cup (or pot) of joe is causing some bladder irritation, don’t feel pressured to cut coffee out completely. Maybe try starting with reducing your intake by just 20% and take note if your bladder responds favorably. Depending on the level of bladder irritability, moderation of bladder irritants is key for regulating bladder signaling.

If your curiosity is piqued, fill out this bladder diary for three days. It’ll give you important information on your bladder habits and maybe even highlight important trends (for better or worse) that you didn’t otherwise notice. If you would like expert guidance with improving your bladder habits call our Seattle, WA clinic today to schedule with our pelvic health specialist, Kelsea Cannon, PT.

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Covid-19 Notice

3/27/2020 Covid-19 Notice:

On March 19th, we made the difficult, yet important decision to close both clinics, in order to do our part to flatten the curve. We will reopen the clinics part time on Monday, April 6th, with an emphasis on telemedicine. This will allow us to comply as much as possible with the governor's Stay Home Stay Healthy order if it is extended, while also meeting our obligation as essential infrastructure workers. According to Dr. Matos, an expert in biological surety and the management of select agent programs at federal facilities: "Physical therapists are essential in flattening the curve of the Covid-19 pandemic. They play a key role in keeping people they can help out of doctors' offices and ER's. This will not only free up the medical teams to treat those impacted by Covid-19, but also limit the exposure of those seeking the care of the physical therapist." To that end, we will focus on telemedicine, but also allow for select, necessary in-office treatments for low risk, healthy individuals. This will be a joint determination between you and your PT. Many, if not all of our patients, have come to appreciate the effectiveness and efficiency of the hands-on manual therapy techniques our physical therapists use to help relieve pain and improve function. So, we recognize that a telemedicine visit may not seem as appealing. At this time, telemedicine is the appropriate and safe way to continue your care without further interruption and your physical therapists are prepared to alter their approach in order to still provide effective care.

During our temporary closure, your physical therapists have been on unemployment and not able to contribute to our communities financially as they normally would like to. Getting back to work, providing your care will allow us to resume caring for you and our community. For every telemedicine visit we provide in April, the clinic will donate $5 to the following organizations:

Kelsea Cannon, PT- Westside Baby
Lauren Esmailka, PT- Treehouse
Elizabeth Rogers, PT- Rainier Valley Food Bank

We remain passionate about helping you improve and maintain the function of your movement system so that you can do the activities you love. I remain available for urgent (i.e. post-op care, acute injury, treatment needed to decrease/avoid use of NSAIDs and Opiods) in-clinic treatment and telemedicine treatment from now until April 6th. We invite you to follow/Like our  Facebook page, where I am offering complimentary weekly Pilates mat class on Wednesdays at 7am and foam roller class on Fridays at 7am. All are welcome to participate in these classes or view them anytime on our Facebook page.

Please contact me directly with any questions or concerns. If you are a current patient, you should have received an email from me with scheduling/rescheduling info. Be in touch with your PT to schedule your telemedicine visit. I am available via clinic phone (206-535-7356) and email ( We will update you here and our Facebook page as things change.

We are counting the days until we get to resume our work together both virtually and in the clinic! Thank you for your support of this small, locally-owned physical therapy private practice!

Elizabeth Rogers, PT

Owner, Elizabeth Rogers Pilates & Physical Therapy, PLLC

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