Why do I leak a little after peeing?
If you struggle with a little leakage after you’ve used the bathroom, you’re not alone: Around 30 percent of women experience this type of urinary incontinence, known as overflow incontinence or “after-dribble.” You might feel as though you can’t empty your bladder completely, or you might notice a slight trickle after you think you’ve finished urinating. Urinary incontinence means a person leaks urine by accident. While it can happen to anyone, urinary incontinence, also known as overactive bladder, is more common in older people, pregnant women, and women who’ve given birth. Bladder control issues can be embarrassing and cause people to avoid their normal activities. But incontinence can often be stopped or controlled.
Is it normal to leak urine after peeing?
While it isn’t necessarily normal to leak urine after peeing, urinary incontinence can have causes that aren't due to underlying disease. Examples include intoxication, unavailability of bathrooms, coughing, sneezing, extreme anxiety, or intense laughter.
Causes of a leaky bladder
Urinary incontinence can be caused by everyday habits, underlying medical conditions or physical problems. A thorough evaluation by your doctor can help determine what's behind your incontinence.
Some leaks stem from temporary and controlled causes. Certain drinks, foods and medications may act as diuretics — stimulating your bladder and increasing your volume of urine. They include:
- Carbonated drinks and sparkling water
- Artificial sweeteners
- Chili peppers
- Foods that are high in spice, sugar or acid, especially citrus fruits
- Heart and blood pressure medications, sedatives, and muscle relaxants
- Large doses of vitamin C
Urinary incontinence may also be caused by an easily treatable medical condition, such as:
- Urinary tract infection that can irritate your bladder, causing you to have strong urges to urinate and, sometimes, incontinence.
- The rectum is located near the bladder and shares many of the same nerves. Hard, compacted stool in your rectum from constipation causes these nerves to be overactive and increase urinary frequency.
Urinary incontinence can also be a persistent condition caused by underlying physical problems or changes, including:
- Pregnancy can create hormonal changes and the increased weight of the fetus can lead to stress incontinence.
- Vaginal delivery in childbirth can weaken muscles needed for bladder control and damage bladder nerves and supportive tissue, leading to a dropped (prolapsed) pelvic floor. With prolapse, the bladder, uterus, rectum or small intestine can get pushed down from the usual position and protrude into the vagina. Such protrusions may be associated with incontinence.
- Aging of the bladder muscle can decrease the bladder's capacity to store urine. Also, involuntary bladder contractions become more frequent as you get older.
- After menopause, women produce less estrogen, a hormone that helps keep the lining of the bladder and urethra healthy. Deterioration of these tissues can aggravate incontinence.
- A tumor anywhere along your urinary tract can block the normal flow of urine, leading to overflow incontinence. Urinary stones — hard, stonelike masses that form in the bladder — sometimes cause urine leakage.
- Multiple sclerosis, Parkinson's disease, a stroke, a brain tumor or a spinal injury can interfere with nerve signals involved in bladder control, causing urinary incontinence.
How do I stop leaking after urination?
There are medical treatments available for this type of urinary leaking. Four common solutions your doctor might suggest are:
There are some medications available that can help your bladder hold more urine, slow the feeling of urgency, and improve your ability to empty your bladder all at once.
An injection of Botox in the lining of your bladder can help keep leakage in after peeing.
Injections by your urethra.
The urethra is the little tube that carries urine out of your body. Sometimes, having a little extra support there can help stop leaking.
Bladder sling surgery.
In some cases, bladder leakage could make you a candidate for a bladder sling. This is a bit of mesh—either synthetic or made of human tissue—placed under or around your urethra to give it more support and help prevent leaking.
Tips to manage a leaky bladder
If you’re reluctant to try the solutions mentioned above, there are some other tactics you can try to manage a leaky bladder and potentially stop the leaking of urine after peeing.
You may be able to cut down on bladder leaks by avoiding certain foods, drinks and ingredients, including:
- Artificial sweeteners
- Carbonated beverages
- Citrus fruits and tomatoes
- Corn syrup
- Spicy foods
Research has also found that overweight and obese women who lose weight report fewer episodes of bladder leakage. So losing weight might help alleviate symptoms. And, it is possible to train your bladder with certain exercises like kegels. During Kegels, you regularly tighten certain muscles in your pelvis to strengthen them, which helps you become more leak-proof. With the Knack method, you can do a Kegel just as you cough, sneeze or do another activity that tends to trigger a leak. Though it should be noted that these require practice, and you may need a professional —your doctor or a physical therapist—to show you how to do them properly.
Leak proof protective undies.
Our first suggestion is to purchase some leak proof protective undies that will keep you comfortable and dry. With an absorbent core, Proof Leakproof Period Underwear are the perfect backup as you work to strengthen your pelvic floor and the muscles around your urethra. They help fight odor and leave you feeling dry all day without the fuss and bulk of a panty liner.
Can bladder leakage be cured?
No matter what’s causing your bladder leakage, the vast majority of cases can either be cured or significantly improved. At the very least, it can be managed.
What happens if bladder incontinence is left untreated?
If left untreated, urinary incontinence can lead to sleep loss, depression, anxiety and loss of interest in sex. It might be a good idea to see your doctor if your condition if it’s affecting your everyday life so they can refer you to a pelvic floor specialist or urologist.
When should you see a doctor?
Make an appointment with your primary care provider if you're embarrassed by urine leakage, and you avoid important activities because of it. It’s time to see a doctor if you often feel the urge to urinate and rush to a bathroom, but sometimes don't make it in time. And, if you often feel the need to urinate, but you're unable to pass urine.
Shop Proof Leak Proof Undies
That awful feeling of wet undies is something none of us want to experience. Talk to your doctor about long-term solutions, and shop Proof Leakproof Underwear to keep you feeling dry and comfortable around the clock.