How often do you pee throughout the day?

How long does each pee last?

How do you sit on the toilet? Are you relaxed? Do you hover? Do you use a Squatty Potty?

Do you push when you pee? Do you breathe while on the toilet?

Many of our common toileting habits, such as hovering and straining, often lead to dysfunction.

One of my next posts will go more in depth on how to achieve the perfect pee, but for now, let’s talk about about a technique that may assist your bladder in emptying more efficiently to get out those last few drops.

First things first…

What is voiding?

“Voiding” is the medical term used for passing urine, or peeing.

What is double voiding?

Double voiding techniques are used to improve bladder emptying.

From a muscular standpoint, emptying pee requires coordination between your pelvic floor muscles, bladder, and spinal cord.

Neurologically speaking, a lot of things also have to happen between your brain and spinal cord in order for your body to help you empty pee.

Physiologically, we have circuits in the brain known as “Bradley’s Loops” that activate to not only maintain continence but also allow us to pee.

There are four different loops. Here’s a visual:
  1. Bradley’s Loop #1: Your bladder begins to fill up. Your bladder muscle, commonly known as your detrusor muscle relaxes and your pelvic floor and urethral sphincter contracts. These things all occur without you even knowing!
  2. Bradley’s Loop #2: This is all about conscious awareness, and it’s when you get the first urge to pee. The frontal lobe of your brain tells you “I need to go to the bathroom.” However, your bladder is only half full. You don’t really have to go yet!
  3. Bradley’s Loop #3: Your bladder is just about full, and you get the urge to pee again, and it’s time to plan the next step– go pee!
  4. Bradley’s Loop #4: It’s time for urination to occur. Your bladder muscle (detrusor muscle) contracts and your pelvic floor relaxes, allowing for the bladder to empty urine out.

How can I practice double voiding?

Double voiding works by stimulating the bladder to contract and empty for a second time after peeing once.

There are a variety of ways to practice double voiding to help more efficiently empty your bladder, and prevent frequent bathroom trips throughout the day.

Sit comfortably on the toilet, preferably with your feet supported on a stool or Squatty Potty. If you don’t have access to a stool, try leaning forward with your elbows on your knees.

  • After peeing, rock forward and back or side to side (if you can do so safely.)
  • Wait anywhere from 10-30 seconds before leaving the toilet after peeing to see if your bladder has anything left.
  • Tap your bladder or your sacrum (right above your butt crack) with two fingers.
  • Stroke your inner thigh, abdomen, or low back.
  • Listen to running water
  • After peeing, pretend like you’ve finished. Wipe and stand up– maybe even walk away– then sit back down and wait a few seconds, or try one of these techniques to stimulate your bladder to contract and empty again.
  • For those with male sex organs, you may have more success sitting down when peeing.

Try one or all of these techniques to see which works best for you and your body!

Why should I practice double voiding?

Failing to completely empty your bladder when going to the bathroom can lead to pelvic floor weakness and other dysfunctions, such as incontinence or increased urinary urgency and frequency.

Double voiding can also prevent us from pushing or straining to pee, otherwise known as “power peeing,” which can weaken our pelvic floor muscles as well.

Leaving urine in your bladder can also lead to a buildup of excessive bacteria which can also lead to infections.

So, next time you use the bathroom, try the double voiding technique!

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