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Help! Post natal incontinence - please someone tell me its qutie common and it'll go away ... and I'm not talking about just a trickle (argh!)

(15 Posts)
greenday Tue 18-Sep-07 20:34:07

Had my 2nd DC about 3 weeks ago. The labour (and epidural) and pushing were both rather long. I am now experiencing incontinence - the first few days, I couldn't tell if I had to go to the loo, it just came gushing out (sorry if too much info!). I've been religiously doing my pelvic floor exercise and although the condition has improved, the improvement has been slow and I am feeling disheartened by the fact that I may have to spend the rest of my life wearing tena pads.
I've tried to get more information from the internet and midwives, and they all say the same thing - do your pelvic exercise. But I need more info, I feel I need to hear more real-life experiences to understand this really irritating condition!
Please, anyone with any experience and wisdom, please please tell me it gets back to normal. I know its not the most severe health condition but I just feel so disheartened.

weeonion Tue 18-Sep-07 20:40:23

greenday - hi to you. i have went trhough similar recently and thought that if i just kept going with the pelvic floor exercies then things would get better. thankfully i have a great gp whom i happened to mention this to. she sent me back to the physios at the hospital and we realised that i actually wasnt doign my pelvic floor exercise in teh right way - wasnt using the muscles corectly. i am now going for physion once a week for this.
dontgive up - there is loads they can do and please please contact yr gp / hospital to talk this over.


kinki Tue 18-Sep-07 20:57:01

Hi gd, I had ds3 3 weeks ago too. I had a cs. I was been having incontinence problems during the pregnancy. Before I was discharged I had a routine chat with a physio. She said persevere with the pelvic floor exercises and I should see an improvement within a few weeks. But she also said that if it was still bothering me I should get my gp to refer me to the physios at my 6 week post natal check. Where I am, that would mean a direct referral with not much waiting to a obstetric physio. She didn't go into detail but apparently there is stuff they could do. I've no idea if this service is available elsewhere, but it may be worth asking.

Donk Tue 18-Sep-07 21:01:15

In Leeds we could self refer after birth(via GP) to the physio without having to go on the otherwise lengthy waiting list - I can't remember what the time limit was 6 months maybe?

greenday Tue 18-Sep-07 21:36:57

Thank you all for replying. I will make an appointment with the gp this week as I would like a referral to the physios asap. Just feel that the 6 week check-up is too long a wait to address the problem.
I have some more questions, although i know I should be able to get them answered at physio (but I'm desperate) :

1. does the bladder ever get back to normal (ie, to a point where you walk and do everything things without constantly thinking that you should be doing your pelvic floor exercise). Or should I resign myself to a lifetime of pelvic floor exercise?

2. If I am doing my exercise regularly, generally how long would it take to return to normality?

Weeonion - are you back to normal?

weeonion Tue 18-Sep-07 21:39:46

grrenday - i am still attending the physio. dd is now 21 weeks but i have only been going for about 5 wks. i can see an inprovement tho'. the physio has warned me not to expect miracles but i shoudl be prepared to be doing pelvic floor exercises for the duration!

greenday Tue 18-Sep-07 21:49:07

Thank you, Weeonion - your experience has been very encouraging. I guess too that it is reassuring to know that there are others out there in the same situation (not that I would wish it upon any one, ifywim). Just felt so alone for the last few weeks.

greenday Tue 18-Sep-07 21:50:43

Kinki - you mentioned that you experienced incontinence at pregnancy. Has it improved sine you gave birth?

morocco Tue 18-Sep-07 21:51:02

good physio should sort you out, don't worry. it's still really early days and while the sooner you can get physio the better, don't worry, it will help. in france every woman gets physio after the birth, abdo and pelvic floor exercises, and it's not just squeeze/release, there are also weird little machines they can use that are like internal tens machines that make the muscles contract, those are fab. i think you can buy them from the nct catalogue so you could get started from the privacy of your own home grin
i had trouble after ds2 who was a very very quick ventouse delivery but by dd1 i felt my pelvic floor was stronger than before ds1 and it was absolutely fine after her birth, so it doesn't mean problems for life,not at all

greenday Wed 19-Sep-07 08:04:34

Oh thank you Morocco! That is is relieve to know its not a lifelong problem. Off now to check out NCT website!

chopster Wed 19-Sep-07 08:12:12


jsut to add to the other experiences, after I had my ds1 (9lb7) I was as bad as you. I never even thought about going to the gp, jsut assumed it would clear up and it did. It def won't be a lifelong thing, and I do hope you get it sorted soon. x

greenday Wed 19-Sep-07 08:16:23

Feel much better hearing from others! Chopster, how long did it take to clear up for you?

chopster Wed 19-Sep-07 09:51:52

a good few months before it cleared up completely, but the gushing took jsut weeks iirc. It really scared me too, especially the first time!

btw, I was worried it would happen again when I had the dts, but it wasn't a problem, in case you are thinking about future pgs.

kinki Wed 19-Sep-07 10:18:01

Gd, I've improved a bit since the birth. They told me that my bladder is unusually high hmm so that would explain why things got bad when pregnant. The pressure of the baby off my bladder has helped but I'm still suffering, especially when I cough. Most worryingly I've had 2 times when I've started to wee without even realising, thankfully when I was getting ready for the shower, so no real harm done, but I'm terrified it'll happen when I'm out or something. I try really hard to remember my pf exercises, but I don't think I'm doing them as regularly as I should.

greenday Thu 20-Sep-07 10:16:31

Chopster, you're right - it has put me off the thought of any future pregnancies. But again, I'm grateful for your reassurance.

Thank you all for your responses! I don't feel as panicky as I did a few days ago. It's amazing that there isn't much info about this condition. From what I've read over the internet, I gather that not many women receive treatment since there isn't much literature and awareness made, and hence, they are too embarrased to speak about it.

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