Straining is another big No No when it comes to emptying the bladder
Do you ever find yourself in a rush and wanting to force urine out of the bladder? Maybe you don’t push in the beginning of a void, but you push at the end to ensure you are empty? These are common habits that, if not corrected can result in other issues.
The bladder works best if you can relax your muscles (pelvic floor) allowing urine to naturally flow out. Bearing down or pushing by using the abdominal muscles can weaken and strain your pelvic floor.
Men who have trouble fully emptying may have a bladder outlet obstruction, commonly due to BPH (Benign Prostate Hyperplasia) This condition can cause swelling in the prostate which affects urine flow.
In women, a bladder outlet obstruction is less likely, but they may suffer from pelvic organ prolapse which can make it difficult to start the stream or difficult to empty the bladder completely. Any pelvic organ has the potential to prolapse or descend downward into the vaginal canal. These organs include the uterus, bladder, urethra, rectum and vaginal wall. Sometimes when the bladder prolapses it causes a pocket of urine to form making it difficult to empty that pouch of urine. Doing a “double void” where you lean forward or stand up, then sit down again to help that urine in the pocket find the bladder outlet can make it easier to empty fully.
Pushing urine out can also lead to hemorrhoids or hernia symptoms. There are plenty of techniques to improve urine flow and comfort with emptying. Pelvic physical therapy can be helpful in teaching behavioral strategies and techniques for proper emptying.