Usually middle aged
and older women deal with urinary incontinence although younger women - during
pregnancy and immediately after childbirth suffer from this problem which is
not openly spoken about, but very common.
Loss of bladder
control is urinary incontinence - this happens when sometimes a few drops of
urine leak out due to laughing or coughing or sneezing. Sometimes it is a more
Types of Urinary Incontinence:
When urine leaks out
of the bladder due to coughing, sneezing or lifting heavy objects it is called stress incontinence.
This is normally
caused by childbirth and after menopause. When women stop having periods the
body stops manufacturing the estrogen hormone and studies believe that this
weakens the urethral tissue of the bladder.
-happens when the
bladder is over active; you suddenly find the urge to urinate - without being
able to control the urgency. This can happen in a minute or sometimes within
seconds of warning. This happens during a urinary tract infection, Parkinson's
disease or even multiple sclerosis.
At times you cannot
seem to empty the bladder completely every time you pass urine and instead
experience a constant dribbling of urine - this is called overflow incontinence.
Incontinence is caused
by urinary tract infections
this stops once the infection is under control. At times drugs
cause problems like the ones taken for heart health and high
blood pressure. People with nerve damage
maybe due to a sport can also face the incontinence problem.
Fortunately there are some basic treatments which can help
Kegel or Pelvic Exercises
incontinence a great deal. In the beginning it would be best if they were done
while lying down. Squeeze the muscles you use to stop the flow of urine, hold
for 3-5 seconds - relax and repeat. Repeat this 10 times - 3 cycles a day. Once
you are comfortable you can do them at any time of the day - along with any
activity like dishwashing or working. This strengthens the bladder and urethral
Another simple method
to regain bladder control would be to fix bathroom time - that is pass urine at
without feeling an
urge. Increase the gap as you start feeling more confident. Taking certain
medications may also help - though these must be taken after seeing your
In some cases a doctor
or physician may insert a pessary
which is a ring like device - inside the vagina. It pushes against the wall of
the urethra and reduces stress leakage.
One option is electrical stimulation
of the nerves
which control the bladder - this is done under medical supervision.
Some lifestyle changes also help those with urinary
Limit the amount of alcohol
intake as alcohol is a diuretic
and can add to incontinence. Tea and
both have caffeine
can irritate the lining of the bladder. Chocolate
is another treat it would be better to limit due to the caffeine content
like corn syrup,
honey and fructose are again thought to aid incontinence. Carbonated drinks
- especially colas- can aggravate the condition
due to both caffeine and carbonation.
will fan the flames of
incontinence as will citrus fruits
due to their acid content. Some research has linked smoking
with incontinence due to recurrent instances.
Sometimes wearing a tampon or a pad serves well
enough for those with an occasional dribble, while others have to look for more
permanent options like surgery.