Nishmat's Women’s Health and HalachaIn memory of Chaya Mirel bat R' Avraham

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Is leaking urine a possible hargashah?

1 April, 2009

Question:

Hello and thank you (again) for your help.

I am presently breastfeeding my young baby. Since giving birth, I sometimes don't make it to the bathroom before leaking some urine on my underwear. When this happens, do I have to worry about any stains found on colored underwear? I know that urinating is considered to 'mask' a potential hargasha, in which case, perhaps, colored underwear would not help?


Answer:

Mazal tov on the recent birth of your baby!

You are correct that there is a concern that the sensation of urination may mask a hargashah. Therefore, due to the possibility of a hargashah, we are strict with stains that are found immediately after urinating.  However, in any situation of doubt we are lenient and may disregard the stains, since this is only a possible hargashah (and not a definite one). In your case, the stain might have been on your underwear before your possible hargashah, or it might have appeared more than fifteen seconds afterwards. Therefore, you may disregard any stain found on your colored underwear.

Please note that, while leaking urine after childbirth is not uncommon, there is often treatment for this condition. Exercises known as "Kegels" can be done to strengthen your muscles and help restore control. We suggest that you perform these on a consistent basis, and, if the problem continues, consult your health care provider. For a more detailed discussion, please see our article on Urinary Stress Incontinence.


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