Drink plenty of water to help flush fluids through your bladder (8 to 10 glasses a day). Avoid coffee, soft drinks, and alcohol. They can irritate your bladder and urethra, the tube that brings urine from your bladder out of your body.
Eat a normal, healthy diet with plenty of fiber. You may get constipation from pain medications and being less active. You can use a stool softener or fiber supplement to help prevent this problem.
Take your medicines the way your doctor told you. You may need to take antibiotics to help prevent infection. Check with your doctor before taking aspirin or other over-the-counter pain relievers such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) or acetaminophen (Tylenol).
You may take showers. But avoid baths if you have a catheter. You can take baths once your catheter is removed.
You will need to make sure your catheter is working properly. You will also need to know how to clean the tube and the area where it attaches to your body. This can prevent infection or skin irritation.
After your catheter is removed:
- You may have some urine leakage (incontinence). This should get better over time. You should have close-to-normal bladder control within 3 to 6 months.
- You will learn exercises that strengthen the muscles in your pelvis. These are called Kegel exercises. You can do these exercises any time you are sitting or lying down.
You will return to your normal routine over time. You should not do any strenuous activity, climbing stairs, chores, or lifting (more than 5 pounds) for at least 1 week. You can return to work when you have recovered and are able to do most activities.
- Do not drive until you are no longer taking pain medicines and your doctor says it is OK. Avoid long car rides until your catheter is removed.
- Avoid sexual activity for 3 to 4 weeks or until the catheter comes out.