The urge to pee while diving is a common experience that practically all divers face.
There is no need to feel ashamed about this because there are a number of physiological reasons that this you feel a need to pee while diving. The big question is do you pee in your wet-suit, continue to dive with the discomfort of the urge to go or do you make a mad dash for the surface to take are of it.
Don’t try to not drink fluids before a dive to avoid the urge to pee while diving. Its often overlooked, but dehydration is a problem that divers should try to avoid. Don’t underestimate the amount of fluids that can be lost while diving.
To make matters a bit worse, the more dehydrated you are the more concentrated your urine is. This makes your urine more potent and smelly.
Furthermore trying to hold your pee in while diving can cause other complications such as urinary tract infections and possibly even kidney infections.
Read on below for more details about why we feel the urge to go while we are diving.
Let’s face it: Most of us have committed the cardinal sin of peeing in our wetsuits — even if we say we haven’t. We either spend half our dive with the unrelenting urge to ascend, frantically peel off our neoprene skin and run to the bathroom, or we just…go. This unpleasant experience can convince people they have a bladder problem, or at the very least, deter them from drinking enough water before a dive. In turn, dehydration can increase the risk of decompression sickness, so it’s important that divers fully understand the science behind why this urge to pee happens when they submerge.
Immersion diuresis literally means “water loss due to immersion.” It is thought that there are two main mechanisms behind the process: low temperature and increasing water pressure.
Water is an excellent conductor of heat, hence the need for wetsuits to keep the body warm even in tropical seas. Low temperature stimulates the peripheral blood vessels to constrict, just as they do in your hands and feet on a cold day. This survival mechanism reduces the surface area available for heat loss and shifts blood to the core, keeping the more important organs, i.e., the heart kidneys and brain, perfused with blood
A lot of cases of surfers and divers that have been attacked by sharks have been preceded by the need to relieve.
If however you feel the need to pee in the ocean and are worried about shark attacks then do so in small amounts. This will allow the urine not to be so concentrated. Thereby escaping in smaller amounts to dissipate in the water. Also try and pee early on in the surf and not just as you leave.
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