Sex, Exercise, and Stress Incontinence
Workouts and romance may both trigger 'accidents,' but stress incontinence treatments can bring relief.
Talking to Your Doctor About Stress Incontinence continued...
If your doctor does not ask, Rosenman advocates the straightforward
approach. Try something like: "I'm having some problems with my bladder." At
that point, if your doctor does not pepper you with questions about how often
you experience symptoms, and how long it has been going on, Rosenman suggests
asking for a referral to another doctor or to a specialist, such as a
urogynecologist. A urogynecologist is a gynecologist who has extra training in
Talking to your partner about stress incontinence is not simple, either,
Rosenman acknowledges. But she tells women it may be the most important thing
they can do to help their relationship. Communicating well about the problem,
she writes in her book, will lead to greater affection and trust. And getting
the problem out in the open is often a relief, she says.
In addition to good communication and effective treatments, Rosenman says
some simple measures can help women with stress incontinence enjoy a better sex
life. Among other tips, she tells them to always empty the bladder before
intercourse and to cut back a bit on fluids before intercourse. Don't dehydrate
yourself, but don't overdo the fluids, she says. And she encourages
experimentation to find positions that are more comfortable, reducing overall
In getting more comfortable with talking about stress incontinence, you
might also take a cue from two famous Olympic athletes from the U.S. -- speed
skater Bonnie Blair and gymnast Mary Lou Retton. In recent years, both have
spoken publicly about their experiences with incontinence, raising awareness
that the problem exists and, more importantly, that treatments can improve or
eliminate the problem.