Is It Normal to Leak Urine When You Exercise?

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Exercise can be challenging enough without having to deal with embarrassing urine leaks. If you can’t control unexpected urine leaks during physical activity, know that you’re not alone.

Heripsime Ohanian, PhD, MD, FACOG, has helped many women overcome urinary incontinence issues by treating their root cause. At Bergen Aesthetics, Dr. Ohanian customizes a care plan using nonsurgical therapies to improve your bladder control and enhance your overall pelvic health.

Why urine leaks happen during exercise

There are several types of urinary incontinence that cause unexpected leaks of urine. One common type that may interfere with exercise is stress incontinence, a condition that causes urine leaks when pressure on your bladder increases.

For many women, this increased bladder pressure can stem from simple activities like sneezing or coughing. You might also notice that bladder control is more difficult when you’re running, lifting weights, or doing other types of physical exercises.

Ultimately, stress incontinence develops because of weakness in your pelvic floor muscles that hold your bladder in place. As you get older, your pelvic muscles may not be as strong as they once were and allow urine to leak out.

You might also be at increased risk for weakened pelvic muscles due to:

  • Weight challenges
  • Pregnancy
  • Childbirth
  • Menopause
  • Gynecologic surgery

In addition to stress incontinence, some women also experience urine leaks because of urge incontinence. This condition develops when your bladder muscles and nerves don’t work together like they should.

Urge incontinence causes a sudden urge to urinate that’s so strong, you may not be able to make it to the bathroom in time.

How to exercise again with confidence

One of the best things you can do for yourself when dealing with urine leaks is to explore your treatment options right away. The early you get help, the more beneficial your treatment can be.

For instance, Dr. Ohanian often recommends exercises that target your pelvic floor muscles to improve their strength. The longer you can practice these exercises, the stronger your muscles become to put an end to urine leaks.

There are also lifestyle changes you can make to improve your bladder function, such as going to the bathroom on a schedule and avoiding caffeine and other stimulants that trigger your bladder.

You should also continue with your daily exercise routine to maintain a healthy weight. Until the results of pelvic exercises and lifestyle changes start to show, you can wear an absorbent pad when you work out and bring extra clothing in case you need to change.

Additional therapies for urinary leaks

If you can’t find relief of urinary incontinence symptoms with nonsurgical therapies, you may need more invasive urogynecology treatments like electrical stimulation or surgery to create a better support system for your bladder.

Dr. Ohanian can recommend which treatment is a good fit for you based on the severity of your urinary incontinence symptoms, your age, and other factors. She offers in-office pelvic exams, urine testing, and other diagnostic services to better understand your health and treatment options.

Call Bergen Aesthetics in Paramus, New Jersey, to schedule a diagnostic evaluation for unexpected urine leaks or book an appointment online today.