Treatment For Urinary Incontinence
Today, there are more treatments for urinary incontinence than ever before. The choice of treatment depends on the type of bladder control problem you have, how serious it is, and what best fits your lifestyle. As a general rule, the simplest and safest treatments should be tried first.
Bladder control training may help you get better control of your bladder. Your doctor may suggest you try the following:
- Pelvic muscle exercises work the muscles that you use to stop urinating. Making these muscles stronger helps you hold urine in your bladder longer. Learn more about pelvic floor exercises and how to do them.
- Biofeedback uses sensors to make you aware of signals from your body. This may help you regain control over the muscles in your bladder and urethra. Biofeedback can be helpful when learning pelvic muscle exercises.
- Timed voiding may help you control your bladder. In timed voiding, you urinate on a set schedule, for example, every hour. You can slowly extend the time between bathroom trips. When timed voiding is combined with biofeedback and pelvic muscle exercises, you may find it easier to control urge and overflow incontinence.
- Lifestyle changes may help with incontinence. Losing weight, quitting smoking, saying no to alcohol, drinking less caffeine , preventing constipation and avoiding lifting heavy objects may help with incontinence. Choosing water instead of other drinks and limiting drinks before bedtime may also help.
How Can Prostate Conditions Lead To Incontinence
- Partial blockage of the urethra by the prostate:
- As the urethra narrows, the bladder has to contract more forcefully to push urine out the urethra.
- Overtime, the increased effort required to empty the bladder makes the bladder muscles grow stronger and more sensitive. The bladder begins to contract even when it contains only a small amount of urine, creating the need to urinate more frequently and urgently. Sometimes urine leaks before you have time to get to the toilet .
- The narrowed urethra may also prevent the bladder from emptying completely when you urinate, which can cause a build up of urine and lead to leakage between trips to the toilet . This requires medical attention.
The Relationship Between Medications And Oab
Medications may cause additional reactions beyond their intended effects. Some drugs used to treat various conditions may have unwanted effects on the bladder or the amount of urine produced.
Certain drugs can contribute to OAB for a variety of reasons. For example, some medications cause an increase in urine production. If urine production increases quickly, it can create a sudden need to go to the bathroom.
Other drugs can affect the bladders ability to empty completely, which leaves a person feeling like they have to go to the bathroom frequently.
In some instances, a combination of factors can contribute to OAB. For example, if someone has weak pelvic floor muscles, that can contribute to urinary incontinence. The combination of a medication that can cause OAB and weak pelvic floor muscles may increase symptoms.
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Causes Of Stress Incontinence
Stress incontinence is when the pressure inside your bladder as it fills with urine becomes greater than the strength of your urethra to stay closed. Your urethra is the tube that urine passes through to leave the body.
Any sudden extra pressure on your bladder, such as laughing or sneezing, can cause urine to leak out of your urethra if you have stress incontinence.
Your urethra may not be able to stay closed if the muscles in your pelvis are weak or damaged, or if your urethral sphincter the ring of muscle that keeps the urethra closed is damaged.
Problems with these muscles may be caused by:
- damage during childbirth particularly if your baby was born vaginally, rather than by caesarean section
- increased pressure on your tummy for example, because you are pregnant or obese
- damage to the bladder or nearby area during surgery such as the removal of the womb , or removal of the prostate gland
- neurological conditions that affect the brain and spinal cord, such as Parkinson’s disease or multiple sclerosis
- certain connective tissue disorders such as Ehlers-Danlos syndrome
- certain medicines
Living With Overactive Bladder
Living with overactive bladder will depend on how serious your problem is and how well your treatment works. In either case, living with the condition may require better planning. You may have to plan when you consume liquids and how close you are to a bathroom. You also may consider wearing disposable undergarments that protect your clothing from leaking urine.
Treatments For Male Urinary Incontinence
There are a number of treatment approaches for urinary incontinence to improve bladder control for men, depending on how severe it is and its underlying cause. A combination of treatments might be necessary. There are several categories of medications to treat overactive bladder and relax the bladder muscles and medications for men with incontinence caused by an enlarged prostate. Neuromodulation techniques include percutaneous tibial nerve stimulation, Botox injections in the bladder, and Interstim implantation. When indicated, surgical procedures are available to help alleviate incontinence issues.
Symptoms And Risks For Male Incontinence
The symptoms vary depending on what type of urinary incontinence you experience. Here is a look at the more common signs that you could be dealing with UI.
- A sudden, urgent need to urinate
- A sudden leakage of urine
- Leaking urine while sleeping
In addition to the risk factors mentioned above, there are other influences that can impact a mans chances of experiencing urinary incontinence. For example, lifestyle choices can contribute to UI. We already mentioned obesity, but smoking tobacco has also been linked to an increased risk of urinary incontinence. Caffeinated and carbonated drinks, as well as alcohol, have also been associated with a higher incidence of UI. Men also have to be careful about diuretics or medicines that relax the bladder, such as anticholinergics and antidepressants. Other prescriptions, like sedatives and calcium channel blockers, have been associated with UI, and so have non-prescription diet, allergy, and cold medicines.
Certain diseases and health conditions put men at a higher risk of urinary incontinence, including the following:
- Bladder cancer
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Causes Of Urinary Incontinence
Incontinence can happen for many reasons. For example, urinary tract infections, vaginal infection or irritation, constipation. Some medicines can cause bladder control problems that last a short time. When incontinence lasts longer, it may be due to:
- Weak bladder muscles
- Overactive bladder muscles
- Weak pelvic floor muscles
- Damage to nerves that control the bladder from diseases such as multiple sclerosis, diabetes, or Parkinsons disease
- Blockage from an enlarged prostate in men
- Diseases such as arthritis that may make it difficult to get to the bathroom in time
- Pelvic organ prolapse, which is when pelvic organs shift out of their normal place into the vagina. When pelvic organs are out of place, the bladder and urethra are not able to work normally, which may cause urine to leak.
Most incontinence in men is related to the prostate gland. Male incontinence may be caused by:
- Prostatitisa painful inflammation of the prostate gland
- Injury, or damage to nerves or muscles from surgery
- An enlarged prostate gland, which can lead to Benign Prostate Hyperplasia , a condition where the prostate grows as men age.
Information For Healthcare Providers On Bladder Control Problems
The content on this page will be of most use to clinicians, such as nurses, doctors, pharmacists, specialists and other healthcare providers.
The following signs and symptoms are cause for concern and require referral to a specialist for further investigation:
|Red flags for referral in people with incontinence|
Males with urinary incontinence and any of the following factors should be referred to an appropriate specialist within 2 weeks:
Consideration for referral to a urologist should be given to patients with the following factors:
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The Evaluation Of Oab In Men
The American Urological Association Guideline Panel on the Management of BPH is one of two groups that have made recommendations regarding the initial evaluation of LUTS in men . First, all men presenting with LUTS suggestive of BPH should undergo a medical history to identify other causes of voiding dysfunction or comorbidities that may complicate treatment. The medical history should focus on the urinary tract, previous surgical procedures, and medical conditions and symptoms that lead to bladder dysfunction or polyuria. A family history of BPH and prostate cancer should be elicited, and fitness for possible surgical procedures should be assessed. Second, the presence of locally advanced prostate cancer, which also can produce LUTS, should be excluded by digital rectal examination . A focused neurologic examination should assess the patient’s general mental status, ambulatory status, lower extremity neuromuscular function, and anal sphincter tone. Third, a urinalysis should be performed by dipstick testing or microscopic examination of the sediment to screen for hematuria and urinary tract infection .
Urinary Incontinence In Men
Uncontrollable urination or urinary incontinence occurs in eleven to 34 percent of older men, but it is not just an age-related issue. Younger men can also experience incontinence due to health problems. Urinary incontinence also happens to women, but the biggest issue with incontinence in men is that they are less likely to speak with their doctors about it. This means that the statistics for men could actually be much higher in men that the current numbers indicate. Discussing the problem is the first step towards addressing the symptoms and finding a treatment.
Urinary incontinence often results in the accidental leakage of urine from the body, so it can be uncomfortable and inconvenient. A man can feel a strong, sudden need to urinate just before losing a large amount of urine. Doctors refer to this as urgency incontinence. For some people, this condition keeps them from enjoying certain activities, including sports and exercise. It can also cause a lot of emotional distress as well.
There are different types of urinary incontinence. The types of urinary incontinence men can experience include urgency incontinence, stress incontinence, functional incontinence, overflow urinary incontinence, and transient urinary incontinence.
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Can Overactive Bladder Be Prevented Or Avoided
Overactive bladder cannot be prevented. However, you can reduce the risk of overactive bladder by treating those diseases and conditions that cause it. For example, following your doctors treatment advice for diabetes will reduce nerve damage. If you are pregnant, talk to your doctor about the potential for bladder damage if you have a vaginal delivery.
Overactive Bladder Symptoms In Women
Symptoms common for women with an overactive bladder include:
- The urge to urinate frequently, over 8 times each day
- Uncontrollable urge to urinate suddenly
- Release of urine due to the uncontrollable urge to urinate
- Waking up at night to urinate twice or more
Even if you can get to the toilet in time when you sense the urge to urinate, frequently urinating, whether during the day or night, disrupts your life. Is your life being disrupted? If your symptoms bring you discomfort and complicate your life, itâs time to talk to the physicians at Urology One. Schedule your appointment today!
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Oab And Your Prostate
Among men, many cases of OAB are caused by an enlarged prostate gland. Your prostate may get larger as you age. It can block your flow of urine, causing symptoms of OAB.
According to the National Association for Continence, up to 50 percent of men experience symptoms of an enlarged prostate by the time they turn 60. A whopping 90 percent of men experience symptoms by age 85.
Carefully Manage Your Fluid Intake
Drinking too much fluid puts pressure on your bladder, and makes you need to urinate. Drinking too little means your urine becomes concentrated, which irritates your bladder, and leads to urinary urgency.
However, it’s important to maintain your fluid intake to avoid dehydration. You can drink slowly and throughout the day to maintain adequate hydration.
- Aim to drink four to eight 8 ounce glasses of water a day.
- Look at your urine and aim for a light yellow color. Dark urine is a sign that you are not drinking enough. Colorless urine is a sign of drinking too much.
- Try to drink only during the day and stop a couple of hours before you go to bed.
- Drink mainly water avoid caffeine and carbonated drinks night.
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Signs Symptoms And Treatments
For most men, one trip to the bathroom will empty the bladder and provide relief for several hours. Men with overactive bladder will regularly feel a powerful urge to urinate throughout the day and night. OAB can be life-altering, affect men of all ages, and wreak havoc on your job, social and active lifestyle, and your sleep. Thankfully, there are a variety of approaches available to ease an overactive bladder and get your life back.
What Are The Specific Symptoms Of Overactive Bladder
Overactive bladder represents a collection of symptoms that can include:
- Urinary urgency: This is a failure to be able to postpone the need to urinate. When you feel you need to urinate, you have a limited amount of time to get to a bathroom.
- Frequency of urination: People who experience this symptom need to urinate very often. Typically its an increase in the number of times you urinate compared to what you previously experienced.
- Urge incontinence: In this case, there can be a leakage of urine when you get the urge to urinate.
- Nocturia: This symptom is characterized by the need to get up and urinate at least two times each night.
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First Lets Start Off With Learning A Bit About How Everything Works
The urinary system is composed of two kidneys, two ureters, a bladder, and a urethra. The kidneys remove waste products from the blood and continuously produce urine. The muscular, tube-like ureters move urine from the kidneys to the bladder, where it is stored until it flows out of the body through the urethra. A circular muscle, called the sphincter, controls the activity of the urethra and keeps urine in the bladder until it is time to urinate.
Normally, the bladder wall is relaxed while storing urine and the urethra is closed off by the sphincter. Your pelvic floor muscles also help keep the bladder outlet closed by supporting the urethra.
When the bladder is working correctly, the bladder sends signals to the brain to let you know how full it is, and to the sphincter to tell it to stay closed and prevent the bladder muscle from contracting.
When the bladder is full, you allow the pelvic floor as well as muscles at the outlet of the bladder to relax and open up. As this is happening, the muscle in the wall of the bladder begins to contract and continues contracting until the bladder is completely emptied.
This process of bladder filling and emptying is obviously very complex. When any part of the urinary system or pelvic floor does not work correctly, incontinence can result.
If any of these signals dont happen or get confused, bladder leakage can happen.
Precautions And Proper Diagnosis
The main symptoms of OAB can also occur in other health conditions like bladder cancer, urinary tract infection and enlarged prostate. Seeing blood in your urine is not a symptom of OAB.
A sudden and frequent need to urinate is common in both OAB and a UTI. How can you tell the difference between these two urinary health issues? Unlike OAB, a UTI also comes with other symptoms such as discomfort while urinating. In addition, OAB symptoms are continuous while UTI symptoms are sudden and may also include a fever.
Overflow incontinence is characterized by the involuntary release of urine from an overfull urinary bladder, often in the absence of any urge to urinate. This condition is not associated with OAB. It typically occurs in people who have a blockage of the bladder outlet, which can occur with benign prostatic hyperplasia, prostate cancer or a narrowing of the urethra. Overflow incontinence can also occur when the muscle responsible for removing urine from the bladder is too weak to empty the bladder in a normal way.
It is very important to see a doctor to ensure a proper diagnosis if you experience any changes in your urine and/or urination habits.
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Getting Help For Overactive Bladder
The first step in treatment is to ask for help. It may feel funny talking to your doctor about something as private as urinary issues, but rest assured that your doctor is a professional and is here to help. Be prepared before your appointment by keeping a bladder diary for a few days. This will help your doctor see the extent of your problem, and may help him or her to see any triggers that may be causing your urinary urgency issues.
Be prepared to have a thorough discussion with your doctor about your overactive bladder symptoms, as well as any other symptoms you may be experiencing. You should also let you doctor know if you suffer from any other conditions, such as diabetes, and provide a list of medications youre currently taking, which may be contributing to your symptoms.
Making a list of questions beforehand is also a great idea to ensure that you dont forget anything during your appointment. You may want to ask your doctor about different treatment options that he thinks may be a good fit for you, or about any options youve read about that youre interested in trying. Make sure you find out about the potential side effects for any treatment your doctor proposes, as well as what you can expect in terms of a success rate.