Eric’s situation is not uncommon. Over 35 million American adults suffer from incontinence, and nearly 5 million have a bedwetting problem. And, while alcohol cannot be attributed to all of these cases, it is definitely something to try omitting for a while if you do suffer from incontinence. Sometimes, simple lifestyle changes can make a huge difference.
Alcohol on it’s own doesn’t cause incontinence, but for those who are prone to bladder leaks, it can be a trigger. Alcohol is a diuretic, which means that in increases the production of urine and can also cause a person to need to use the restroom more often. Not only that, alcohol irritates the bladder, which can make overactive bladder symptoms worse. It’s worth it to try eliminating alcohol if you have incontinence. (Especially if you tend to drink to excess.)
Alcohol isn’t the only thing you should watch out for if you struggle with bladder leakage.
The following foods and drinks can also irritate the bladder
- Caffeinated beverages like coffee and tea
- Chocolate (it contains caffeine too!)
- Carbonated drinks
- Spicy foods
- Citrus foods
- Acidic foods, such as tomatoes
- Cranberry juice
- Sugar – including artificial sweeteners
- Certain medications
If you are experiencing incontinence, try eliminating some of these foods from your diet to see if it makes a difference. It may help you to keep a bladder diary during this experiment to record how what you eat affects your bladder leaks. And if you experience bedwetting, definitely try skipping that nightly glass of wine. As Eric discovered, sometimes making simple lifestyle changes can make a huge difference. “I’m dry again! I miss having a drink with the guys, but it’s something I can live without if it means I don’t wet the bed.”
Want a handy cheat sheet of foods to avoid if you have incontinence? Print out our free download of foods that may trigger incontinence and hang it on your fridge for easy reference!