and pee or poo problems

Let’s yarn about this

Cover picture

Diabetes and pee or poo problems

Diabetes can cause pee (urine) and poo (bowel) problems.

This happens if the diabetes is not well looked after and there is too much sugar in the blood.

A lot of people with diabetes have these problems.

Diabetes upsets the nerves that tell the bladder (pee bag) to fill up and empty.

Leaking can make the person feel shamed and sad.

What the bladder and bowel do

The bladder holds the pee (urine) and the bowel holds the poo, before we go to the toilet.

Picture of bladder & bowel

Too much sugar in the blood can cause pee or poo problems like:

  • a strong feeling to pee
  • rushing to pee a lot
  • leaking pee because you don’t make it to the toilet in time
  • some pee leaking out after leaving the toilet
  • pain, stinging or burning because of a germ (infection) in the pee, or
  • runny poo or runny tummy (diarrhoea) or hard poo (constipation).

What you can do

  • Make good choices with fluids. 6 mugs of water a day is best.
  • Try to drink less caffeine drinks such as tea, coffee, fizzy drinks or energy drinks.
  • Try to drink less grog.
  • Exercise the muscles that hold in your pee and poo.
  • Talk to your health worker, nurse or physiotherapist about pelvic floor muscle exercises.
  • Do bladder training – try to hold onto your pee a little longer every time. This can teach your bladder to hold more pee.
Man & womal exercising
  • Try not to put on weight – do more exercise every day and follow the advice about healthy food.
  • Don’t let your poo get hard. Eat lots of fruit, vegetables, nuts, seeds and grains.
  • After going to the toilet, wipe from front to back to stop poo germs coming to the front and causing infection.
  • Keep your blood sugar level under control and check it when the health worker suggests.
healthy foods

Talk to your health worker, nurse or doctor

Who can help?

  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health service
  • Health workers
  • Nurses
  • Doctors
  • National Continence Helpline Freecall™ 1800 33 00 66
Talk about your problem
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This series of brochures has been developed by the Continence Foundation of Australia and funded under
the Australian Government’s National Continence Management Strategy.

Indigenous artwork created by Georgina Altona and Warwick Keen.
Other illustrations by JAT Illustrational and Fusebox Design.

© 2010

D0914August 2012