If you want to be serious about keeping consistent with your health habits, try keeping a bladder and bowel diary. Why should you keep a bladder and bowel diary?
First of all, I have to be a little honest, I can barely remember what I ate for breakfast this morning, let alone remember all the details of my bathroom habits! What about you? Due to our busy lives, many of us do not remember these important things. So, can you answer these questions:
- How many times did you wake up last night to urinate?
- How many times did you urinate during the day?
- How much and what did you drink yesterday?
- Did you poop yesterday? When is the last time you pooped?
- What does your poop look like?
Keeping a detailed diary really does make a difference in most of our patient’s outcomes and progress with therapy. It shows both the patients and to the clinician what kind of habits and function that is actually occurring on a daily basis. As a pelvic floor therapist, I find it so important to have all my patients answer these questions. I have parents complete a diary for their children, if they are not able to do it themselves. I've attached a sample of a bladder/bowel diary that I have them complete at the bottom of this page.
Once my patients complete a diary for one or more days, they bring it back to their next appointment, at which time we spend a lot of time reviewing their habits. I try to teach them what things that may be irritating their bladder or bowels with both what they eat or drink. Then I make suggestions on what they need to change in order to help their diet. We spend time reviewing other parts of their diaries, like their voiding schedule. We live in a very fast pace where many people are not going to the bathroom enough and are holding it all day. Many professions, such as teachers and health care providers, wait too long to void and then they run into problems.
It can be a real eye opener for many people including parents. It is pretty amazing to see the look when someone brings in their diary, and they notice certain patterns that they are doing in their daily lives.
It’s important to remember what you drink affects your bladder. And what you eat affects your bowels. A crucial part of a healthy bladder and bowel is in our dietary habits.
And at His Therapy, your overall health is important to us, and we value gut health and dietary education to be one of the extremely vital ways for you to overcome urgency, leakage, or constipation. We would love to be a part of your new year resolution and partner with you in bringing in a new and healthier body for the year 2019!
Sabina K. Weaver, MSPT