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Seven Steps to a Healthier Bladder

Most people don’t like to talk about the bladder or what it does, especially when it isn’t working properly. The bladder is a balloon-like organ that stores urine until it is evacuated from the body. Like many organs of the body, it can change as a person ages. The bladder may become less flexible, not allowing it to expand as much to hold urine. That may cause your loved one to have to use the bathroom more often. The walls and the pelvic floor may weaken, making it more difficult to fully empty the bladder, which can cause urine to leak out later at unexpected times.

Even if your loved one isn’t experiencing any bladder issues, he can help prevent them by applying these seven steps for better bladder health.

  • Exercise regularly and maintain a healthy weight. Both of these can help him maintain a healthy bladder and reduce the risk of leaking urine. Have your loved one plan out his daily exercise routine (30 minutes a day is optimum) and then have an accountability partner such as his elder care provider to keep him focused on meeting those daily goals.
  • Make diet adjustments. Some foods and drinks can make bladder problems worse. Soda, artificial sweeteners, citrus fruits, and spicy foods can make a bladder problem worse. If any of those items are a regular part of your loved one’s diet, ask his elder care provider to help him find better substitutes the next time they go grocery shopping.
  • Drink more water. If your loved one enjoyed his soda and is looking for a replacement, have him increase his water consumption. He should drink enough that he needs to urinate every few hours to keep his bladder in tip-top shape.
  • Drink less alcohol and caffeine. Both of these products can cause bladder issues. Caffeinated drinks can irritate the bladder and stimulate it to need to urinate too often.
  • When urinating, take time and relax. Running into the bathroom and then running out may not give your loved one’s body the time it needs to fully empty the bladder. Your loved one should give himself enough time to fully empty his bladder when urinating.
  • Urinate often. While sometimes a person can become very busy or focused on an activity, your loved one should strive to take breaks at least to urinate every few hours. Holding urine in the bladder can weaken the bladder muscles and possibly create a bladder infection. Have your elder care provider ask your loved one each time he visits when was the last time he used the bathroom. If it was more than 4 hours ago, he should try to use it again.
  • Wear cotton and loose-fitting clothes. Both of these will allow the area to stay dry and not trap moisture, which can lead to infections.

Don’t let bladder issues keep your loved one from enjoying life. Help him find some new healthy bladder practices and if the problem persists, see a doctor to help him find a solution so he can continue to get out and do the things he loves.

If you or an aging loved one is considering elder care in Walnut Creek, CA, please contact the caring staff at Golden Heart Senior Care of Walnut Creek. (925) 203-3039.

Older Americans Are Taking More Prescriptions. Is Your Dad?

Each year, the CDC releases a report on medications older adults take. It was found that close to 40 percent of all adults 65 or older fills prescriptions for at least five medications each month. Close to 50 percent filled one to four prescription medications. At the same time, emergency rooms across the U.S. reported an increase in the number of visits regarding adverse reactions or overdoses of prescription medications.

CDC reports also find that delaying or not taking prescription medications can worsen a person’s health. Do you know how many prescription medications your dad takes? Is he taking them correctly? It’s a good discussion to have with him each month. These are the steps you need to take.

Find Out What He Takes

Ask your dad to show you the prescription bottles for anything he takes. See if he’s holding any unfilled prescription slips. If he hasn’t had them filled due to the cost, work with him to make sure he has them filled. If you’re allowed, you could verify with his doctors that he has all of the medications that have been recommended.

Go over each medication. See how often he takes it, how he’s supposed to take it, and how many pills are left. You could get him on a mail-order service that ensures he always has the medications before he runs out. Medicare can help you with this.

Talk About the Importance and Dosing

Talk to your dad about why he’s taking a medication. Go over the dosing instructions and make sure he takes it correctly. If he forgets to take his medications, ask him what he does? If the pills are supposed to be taken immediately, he should do that. If taking two doses close together is risky, the instructions may be to wait until the next dose.

What you don’t want is your dad to take two pills instead of one. If he missed a dose of something and decides to take two pills when it’s time for his next dose, he could overdose.

It may be easier for him to have pills set up in a medication management tool. A pill organizer is an affordable, simple way to keep all of his pills organized. They come in different styles. You could have one that separates medications by the time of day or one that just groups all pills together for the day.

If you’re worried about him taking too many, there are timed pill organizers that only allow the door to open when it’s the right time. An audible alarm goes off when it’s time to take his pills.

Hire Elder Care Providers to Help With Medication Reminders

Elder care helps with medications. Have a caregiver come to your dad’s home each day to remind him to take his medications on time. Caregivers can also order refills and pick up prescriptions from the pharmacy. Make arrangements by calling an elder care agency in your community.


If you or an aging loved one is considering elder care in Walnut Creek, CA, please contact the caring staff at Golden Heart Senior Care of Walnut Creek. (925) 203-3039.