Duration Of Urinary Incontinence
Most cases of UI are chronic, and will remain so until treated. Depending on the cause, however, not all UI cases are chronic. If the cause is temporary, such as a vaginal infection or a urinary tract infection, the UI will stop once the issue is addressed.
What Causes Urinary Incontinence
There are many different causes of urinary incontinence. It is important to check within yourself to see what could be the cause because this will help the doctor assess which form of treatment is best.
There are both medical reasons and lifestyle reasons that can lead to sudden onset urinary incontinence.
I Just Passed Out Should I Be Worried
Fainting is a temporary loss of consciousness which can be frightening to experience or witness.
Its how the body reacts to environmental triggers like pain and emotional distress and in most cases, although it can appear alarming, isnt always cause for concern.
However, if someone experiences multiple episodes of fainting, complaints of violent shaking, loss of bladder control, or long periods of blackout, their condition should be investigated by a physician who can decide if treatment is necessary.
In some cases, its important other people witness the episode to determine if help is needed. So, in the event it happens to you or someone close to you, here are three main reasons why someone might lose consciousness:
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Types Of Urinary Incontinence
There are different types of incontinence:
- Stress incontinence occurs when urine leaks as pressure is put on the bladder, for example, during exercise, coughing, sneezing, laughing, or lifting heavy objects. Its the most common type of bladder control problem in younger and middle-age women. It may begin around the time of menopause.
- Urge incontinence happens when people have a sudden need to urinate and cannot hold their urine long enough to get to the toilet. It may be a problem for people who have diabetes, Alzheimers disease, Parkinsons disease, multiple sclerosis, or stroke.
- Overflow incontinence happens when small amounts of urine leak from a bladder that is always full. A man can have trouble emptying his bladder if an enlarged prostate is blocking the urethra. Diabetes and spinal cord injuries can also cause this type of incontinence.
- Functional incontinence occurs in many older people who have normal bladder control. They just have a problem getting to the toilet because of arthritis or other disorders that make it hard to move quickly.
When To Call A Doctor For Urinary Incontinence In Men
For some men, urinary incontinence can be a minor inconvenience, but for others it can be severe and life changing. If you are experiencing a lot of problems with UI, such as weakness or numbness in your buttocks, legs, and feet, or if you get a fever, chills, and belly pain, you should see a doctor. Blood in the urine or burning with urination could also be a sign of a medical issue. Male incontinence at night, especially leakage while sleeping, needs to be addressed by a doctor.
While bringing urinary incontinence up with a doctor may seem embarrassing, just remember that they hear about it all the time from men. Also, the sooner you bring it up, the better chance you have of finding a proper treatment so you can resume normal living.
What The Caregiver Can Do
- Encourage or help the patient with appropriate skin care after using the bathroom. Use warm water and pat the area dry.
- Help the patient keep a diary that records specific foods or drinks that may affect how frequently the patient goes to the bathroom.
- Help the patient maintain a bladder or bowel plan.
- Encourage the patient to go to the bathroom at consistent time frames during the day, like after a meal.
- Encourage regular daily exercise, as permitted by the health care team.
Medications That May Cause Incontinence
Some medicines can disrupt the normal process of storing and passing urine, or increase the amount of urine you produce. These include:
- angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors
- hormone replacement therapy
Stopping these medications, if advised to do so by a doctor, may help resolve your incontinence.
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Causes Of Urge Incontinence
The urgent and frequent need to pass urine can be caused by a problem with the detrusor muscle in the wall of the bladder. The detrusor muscles relax to allow the bladder to fill with urine, then contract when you go to the toilet to let the urine out.
Sometimes the detrusor muscle contract too often, creating an urgent need to go to the toilet. This is known as having an ‘overactive bladder’. The reason your detrusor muscle contracts too often may not be clear, but possible causes include:
- drinking too much alcohol or caffeine
- poor fluid intake this can cause strong, concentrated urine to collect in your bladder, which can irritate your bladder and cause symptoms of overactivity
- conditions affecting the lower urinary tract , such as urinary tract infections or tumours in the bladder
- neurological conditions
- certain medications
What Are The Symptoms Of Incontinence
The main symptom of incontinence is a leakage of urine. This could be a constant dripping of urine or an occasional experience of leakage. If you have incontinence, you might have large amounts or small amounts of leaked urine. You might experience leakage for a wide variety of reasons often depending on the type of incontinence you have.
You might leak urine when you:
- Have an urge to urinate, but cant make it to the toilet on time.
- Have to get up in the middle of night to urinate .
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Incontinence And Alzheimers Disease
People in the later stages of Alzheimers disease often have problems with urinary incontinence. This can be a result of not realizing they need to urinate, forgetting to go to the bathroom, or not being able to find the toilet. To minimize the chance of accidents, the caregiver can:
- Avoid giving drinks like caffeinated coffee, tea, and sodas, which may increase urination. But dont limit water.
- Keep pathways clear and the bathroom clutter-free, with a light on at all times.
- Make sure you provide regular bathroom breaks.
- Supply underwear that is easy to get on and off.
- Use absorbent underclothes for trips away from home.
For more ways to deal with incontinence and other common medical problems in someone with Alzheimers, visit Alzheimers Disease: Common Medical Problems.
Who Gets Incontinence
Incontinence can happen to anyone. However, its more common in certain groups and at certain times in your life. Incontinence is much more common in women than in men. This is often related to pregnancy, childbirth and menopause. Each of these experiences can cause a womans pelvic support muscles to weaken over time.
Youre also more likely to experience incontinence as you get older. The muscles that support your pelvic organs can become weaker over time, causing you to experience leakage issues.
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What To Do About It
It is important to talk to your healthcare provider to determine the underlying cause of your problem. They will consider your symptoms and then help create a plan of action. Some of the treatment options for loss of bladder and bowel control may include the following:
When other treatments do not produce desired results, you may consider undergoing surgery. Your doctor tries to repair any damage to the nerves and muscles to prevent loss of bladder and bowel control.
How To Train Your Bladder
Try using behavioral techniques such as bladder training. Start by going to the bathroom to pee every half hour, whether you feel the urge or not. As you get into the rhythm, gradually — over days or weeks — expand the time between bathroom breaks. Eventually, you may be able to space breaks by 3 to 4 hours and the urges in between may decrease.
What Causes Bladder Leaks
There are two main types of urinary incontinence:
If you have this type, activities that raise the pressure inside your abdomen cause urine to leak through the ring of muscle in your bladder that normally holds it in. Coughing, sneezing, jumping and lifting heavy objects could lead to a leak.
Going through childbirth, smoking or being overweight can raise the risk of stress incontinence for women, Wright says. Stress incontinence in men is rare, and when it arises, its often due to prostate cancer treatment, such as radiation or surgery.
With this type, your brain, spinal cord and bladder dont work together properly to allow you to hold and release urine at the right time. Your bladder may suddenly empty itself without warning. Or you may feel like you need to urinate frequently, a problem called overactive bladder.
Some diseases that affect the nervous system, such as multiple sclerosis or stroke, can cause this kind of incontinence, says Wright. In men, an enlarged prostate may be the culprit. But in many cases, doctors dont know what causes urge incontinence.
It is possible to have both types of incontinence at the same time.
TRY IT: Keep Records
Your doctor will want to know as much as possible about your bladder leakswhen they occur, how much urine comes out, and what youre doing when leaks happen. Consider keeping a diary of when you urinate and when you have leaks, recommends Wright.
Medications For Male Incontinence
For men with urge incontinence, medications may help. Some relax the muscles to help prevent unwanted contractions of the bladder. Others block the nerve signals to the bladder that make it contract at the wrong time. Drugs prescribed to shrink an enlarged prostate can help with other urinary problems. Drugs like diuretic “water pills” can actually trigger or worsen incontinence.
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How Do I Do Kegel Exercises
Kegel exercises are a simple way to build strength in your pelvic floor muscles. These exercises are done by lifting, holding and then relaxing your pelvic floor muscles. You can find these muscles by stopping the flow of urine mid-stream while youre urinating. Only do this until you learn how to find the muscles stopping the flow of urine mid-stream isnt healthy over a long period of time.
When youre doing Kegel exercises, start small. Only hold it for a few second. Over time you can slowly work your way up to longer and longer stretches of holding the muscles tight.
Unlike other types of workouts, no one can tell when youre doing Kegel exercises. Aim to do several sets of Kegel exercises twice a day.
What Are The Causes Of Loss Of Bladder Control
Short-term loss of bladder control may come from urinary tract infections, vaginal infections, constipation, and some medications. However, if your loss of bladder control lasts longer than a week, tell your doctor.
Long-term loss of bladder control may be caused by:
- Weak muscles in the bladder
- Overactive bladder muscles
- Damage to nerves in the bladder
- Blockage from an enlarged prostate
- Excess weightWhy get treatment for loss of bladder control?
Bladder control problems can be embarrassing and can cause you to needlessly cut back on the activities that you enjoy. They may also be a sign of a serious underlying health condition. Bladder incontinence may be a symptom of kidney disease, diabetes, Alzheimers, Parkinsons, multiple sclerosis , and other diseases.
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Urinary Incontinence In Older Adults
Urinary incontinence means a person leaks urine by accident. While it may happen to anyone, urinary incontinence is more common in older people, especially women. Incontinence can often be cured or controlled. Talk to your healthcare provider about what you can do.
What happens in the body to cause bladder control problems? The body stores urine in the bladder. During urination, muscles in the bladder tighten to move urine into a tube called the urethra. At the same time, the muscles around the urethra relax and let the urine pass out of the body. When the muscles in and around the bladder dont work the way they should, urine can leak. Incontinence typically occurs if the muscles relax without warning.
Can Incontinence Be Prevented
Different events throughout your life can lead to many of the things that cause incontinence. The muscles that support your pelvic organs can weaken over time. For women, these muscles can also be weakened by big life events like pregnancy and childbirth. However, in the same way you work out to build strength in your legs or arms, you can do exercises to strengthen your pelvic floor muscles. Doing exercises to strengthen your pelvic muscles may not prevent you from having any issues with incontinence, but it can help you regain control of your bladder. Maintaining a healthy body weight can also help with bladder control. Talk to your healthcare provider about the best ways to maintain strong pelvic floor muscles throughout your life.
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The Signs And Causes Of Fainting
Fainting occurs when ones blood pressure suddenly drops, resulting in a decrease of blood flow to the brain.
A number of things can affect blood pressure, from abrupt changes in posture , dehydration, and certain medications. Feeling faint can include dizziness, lightheadedness, and nausea. Ones field of vision may even black out. This loss of consciousness triggers a loss in muscle control. Thats what causes the person to fall to the ground.
One of the most common types of fainting is caused by a sort of crossed signal between the brain and the vagus nerve, a large nerve that runs from the brain to the stomach. When this nerve is overstimulated, a person may faint. In such cases, you can usually figure out the reason maybe you were standing for a long time, fainted at the sight of blood, or due to some kind of emotional distress, trauma, or pain.
Some people faint because theyve suddenly constricted their carotid artery by turning their head abruptly or wearing a too-tight collar. Straining to make a bowel movement or even urinating can sometimes cause fainting, too.
Fainting can also occur in people who have hypoglycemia, or low blood sugar, most common among diabetics because of fluctuating insulin levels. Dehydration can also cause fainting, particularly in the elderly. Certain types of medications, including
Treatments For Urgency Incontinence
Urgency incontinence is when you get the urge to go, and if you dont make it to a bathroom, your bladder will empty. It can have serious effects on your life and your work.
Experts dont know what causes urgency incontinence, but there are different ways to approach it. First we start with behavioral changes, which vary based on your situation. Steps could include:
Weight loss again, losing even a small amount of weight can help.
Avoiding excess fluids. If youre having trouble sleeping, we talk about limiting fluids before bedtime so sleep is less interrupted.
Time voiding, which is retraining the bladder. If the patient is in the bathroom every hour, well slowly lengthen that interval so theyre in the bathroom less often.
Pelvic floor exercises, with help from a physical therapist.
Changing your diet. I review a list of bladder irritants: coffee, chocolate, alcohol, spicy foods, and other things. We have patients skip those foods and drinks for a week or two and see what their urgency or frequency is like.
If behavioral changes dont help, there are other options to explore. We can try certain medications that relax your bladder muscles and prevent leakage. Botox, injected into the muscles of the bladder, can help some patients temporarily. And there are several medications we can try, including anticholinergics, which block the impulse to urinate. This can help you get more sleep at night.
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Diagnosis Of Urinary Incontinence
The first step in treating incontinence is to see a doctor. He or she will give you a physical exam and take your medical history. The doctor will ask about your symptoms and the medicines you use. He or she will want to know if you have been sick recently or had surgery. Your doctor also may do a number of tests. These might include:
- Urine and blood tests
- Tests that measure how well you empty your bladder
In addition, your doctor may ask you to keep a daily diary of when you urinate and when you leak urine. Your family doctor may also send you to a urologist, a doctor who specializes in urinary tract problems.
Male Urinary Incontinence Home Remedies
There are a number of home remedies and lifestyle adaptations that are known to assist with UI, as well as help to prevent it. They can either be tried on their own, such as for mild cases of UI, or combined with other medical treatments. However, a consultation with a urologist is recommended to evaluate each individual case. With expert medical assistance, these home remedies can be adopted in addition to receiving any other necessary treatments.
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