What you can do

Prevention

Whilst continence issues are common, they are often linked with other health and medical conditions. It is strongly advised that you speak with your health care provider.
Some preventative measures are outlined below. This information is not exhaustive and should be used in conjunction with advice from a health care professional specialising in continence related issues. Contact us on (08) 9386 9777 to obtain details of your nearest continence advisor.

Good Bladder Habits

  • Keep well hydrated (always follow instructions from your health care provider).  Australian Dietary Guidelines
  • Limit tea, coffee, cola and alcohol
  • Take your time to empty your bladder properly
  • Don't strain to empty your bladder
  • Don't go to the toilet "just in case"
  • Be active every day and do at least 30 minutes of moderate physical activity, such as walking.

Good Bowel Habits

  • Eat 2 serves of fruit and 5 serves of vegetables daily
  • Avoid constipation
  • Don't strain to empty your bowel
  • Be active every day and do at least 30 minutes of moderate physical activity, such as walking.

Pelvic Floor Muscle Exercises

The pelvic floor muscles support the bladder and bowel and play an important role in bladder and bowel control.  Strengthening the pelvic floor muscles may help lessen incontinence and may also prevent problems from occurring in the future. 

Good results take time and it is important to do the exercises correctly to get the most benefit.  Best results are gained by seeking help from a physiotherapist or nurse continence advisor as to the correct way to do the exercises.  Professional advice is essential if you have been doing pelvic floor exercises and are unsure if the muscles are working, or if you feel that you are not making any progress.

Current research suggests that it is not necessary to perform lots of these exercises.  A set of 8 - 12 pelvic floor muscle contractions performed three times per day is sufficient to strengthen pelvic floor muscles.

Other things you can do to help your pelvic floor is:

  • Avoid heavy lifting
  • Avoid constipation and straining to use your bowel
  • Seek medical advice for hay fever, asthma and bronchitis to reduce sneezing and coughing
  • Keep your weight within the healthy range for you
  • Safe pelvic floor muscle exercises Pelvic Floor First

Do you have any questions?

Please click here to see the answers to our frequently asked questions.

Information Fact Sheets

For further information on either good bladder habits, good bowel habits or pelvic floor muscle exercises please click here to order a free information fact sheet or ring the Continence Advisory Service.

Public Education

Learn how to prevent, treat and manage bladder and bowel problems at one of the Continence Advisory Service's award winning community education sessions. Please click here for further information of community education.

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