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Bladder problems

Bladder problems – such as incontinence (urine leakage), passing urine more frequently at night and urinary tract infections – can become more common during menopause. 

If you experience a burning pain when passing urine, or if you feel the need to go to the toilet frequently yet pass only small amounts of urine or the urine smells unpleasant, see your general practitioner. You may have a bladder infection that requires treatment with antibiotics.

What can help maintain bladder health?

  • Drink sufficient fluids – especially early in the day.
  • Go to the toilet promptly when your bladder is full.
  • Pass urine directly after intercourse.
  • Wipe from front to back after using the toilet.
  • Talk to your doctor about topical oestrogen.

What can help avoid incontinence?

  • Try pelvic floor exercises to reduce urine leakage and improve bladder control. Exercise brochures are available from most general practitioners and chemists. You may find it helpful to seek advice from a physiotherapist - ask your general practitioner or breast care nurse for a referral.
  • Keep your weight within normal limits for your height.
  • Avoid stimulants for coughing, like cigarettes
  • Avoid food and drinks containing high levels of caffeine, as this can irritate the bladder and can increase incontinence.
  • Visit your local continence advisory service. Ask your general practitioner or breast care nurse for more information.