We've all been there. You're about to set off an an extended car trip and you're trying to ensure the pee situation doesn't become an issue down the line.
Nobody wants to be the one asking to pull over 20 minutes into the journey.
So you have an idea: drop down on the can and force the urine out ahead of time to prevent it from being a total inconvenience later on.
Of course, that might warrant some forcing, but you're willing to endure that to avoid being the butt end of jokes for the rest of the car trip.
But according to one TikTok user, forcing out pee ahead of time is a big old no-no.
@nosuchthingastmi, who is training to become a physical therapist, recently posted a video describing the issues that could arise from forcing out pee on a regular basis.
no more peeing just in case!!!!!! #pelvichealth #pelvicfloortherapy #bladderhealth #urinaryincontinence
"Let's talk what happens when you pee 'just in case.' Like when you're about to leave the house and you're like, 'I don't know if I have to pee but I may have to pee so I'm gonna go pee.' "
"If you do this often, you're bladder is never filling up properly."
She continued with specifics.
"[Your bladder] is not filling to full capacity. You're peeing when it's half way full."
"So you may have the urge to pee more frequently because it's only filling half way and it's going 'ding ding ding' I have to go pee right now."
"You're essentially sensitizing your bladder to go at lower volumes than needed. And then your body becomes used to that, so it's hard to get out of that. It's a habit."People on TikTok were glad to receive the info.
BuzzFeed was intrigued by her claims, and followed up with Dr. Heather Jeffcoat, DPT, a physical therapist who specializes in pelvic floor health.
Jeffcoat confirmed the claims in the TikTok video, and offered some further elaborations on the process.
"One of the first things we learn in pelvic health physical therapy education is to educate our patients to not urinate 'just in case'."
"When the neurologic connection between the bladder and the pelvic floor becomes dysfunctional, instead of the pelvic floor contracting to maintain continence, they relax and the bladder contracts in a setting where it is not appropriate to do so, and urinary leakage may result—in your car, in the hall on the way to the bathroom, etc."
Jeffcoat then gave some pragmatic advice.
"The sweet spot [for urination] is a regular frequency of once every two to three hours."
"At night, you should be getting a minimum of six hours of straight sleep before your bladder wakes you up."
So take note everybody.
If it's possible, pee only when it's time and restrain the urge to force it out ahead of time.