Saturday, November 24, 2012


The weather is really changing and my bladder doesn't like it! It's pretty cold this morning (only 21 here in the northern Chicago suburbs this morning), but the sun is out and that's always a plus!

I know many IC patients find extreme weather really irritates their IC. I was always a winter girl! I loved winter sports and was an avid skier. I really miss skiing more than just about anything. I was never a good athlete growing up and when I discovered skiing and was actually good at it, I just loved it! My entire family skis, although for the first time in probably 30 years, no one can make a ski trip this Christmas; kind of sad. But I would even run in the cold weather and just basically preferred it over hot, humid summers.

Now, due to my IC, the weather that I can tolerate - or enjoy - has narrowed significantly. I would still go for a walk in the cold weather; heck I have all the gear from my skiing days, so I can dress for it. But these days, walks aren't even on my agenda. I am determined to get back to my walks at some point and I am just looking at this as a temporary set back. I love a sunny, cold day after a snowfall. It always made me so happy to walk in that kind of weather. I know, lots of you think I'm nuts. But I really hate the heat and humidity we get here in the Chicago area. This past summer was horrendous and I don't think we spent more than a few days outside; plants died, grass was brown. It was awful.

I guess the point is, that this year I haven't been able to do as much as I could in the past, even since getting IC and weather now plays more of a part in this since getting IC. This was a challenging year. It's been a struggle but I am working hard to improve my symptoms and hope to return to doing at least my walks around my neighborhood. We have beautiful trails, even with a porta-potty so I can take a potty break on my walks. I want to get back to that. So, that's what I want to focus on and will work toward in the new year.

We should all have goals to work toward, even with our IC struggles. I think it's important to have realistic goals to work toward, no matter how big or small. Set a goal and work toward it in whatever way you can. Work on your treatment plan with your doctor, work on your diet, do better at taking care of yourself by resting and not overdoing it during the holidays.

If, like me, you find the cold weather irritates your bladder, avoid it as much as you can. If you must go out in it, I strongly recommend silk underwear; it's thin but warm and can even be worn under jeans. I have tops and bottoms and even wear them around the house under my lounging pants and tops. I love my pretty afghan that I snuggle under, and of course, the ever popular heating pad on your bladder is a popular IC home "remedy". My IC Support Group Leader turned me on to drinking plain old hot water. I can't drink anything but water but was looking for something hot and she drinks it, so I thought - why not? I tried it and it's fine. It gives me something hot to drink and it feels so good when I drink it.

Winter is rapidly approaching. If you live in a cold weather climate and it bothers your IC, plan ahead, dress for it and try a few tricks to help you get through it. Buy some of those "hot packs" that are used for aches and pains and put one on your abdomen before you have to go out. Then take it off when you get where you are going.

Whatever you do, I hope everyone finds a way to cope with coming winter and cold weather!

Picture of me in my skiing days! Ahh, memories! Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow!!


  1. Catherine, I am just the opposite. I love heat and warm weather much more. Thanks for reminding us that we need to have goals. I think that is a great idea!

  2. Thanks, Barbara! Glad you liked the post and got something out of it!

  3. What about hot weather...does that effect people with IC too? It sure seems to effect me. I get exhausted easily and bladder spasms start in with cramping. Does anyone else get this too?