What is urinary leakage (incontinence)?
Urinary incontinence occurs when you unexpectedly lose urine. There are three main types of incontinence:
This type of incontinence occurs when activities such as laughing, coughing, heavy lifting, or exercise strains the bladder and causes urine leakage.
Urine leakage caused by urge incontinence occurs when you have a sudden and intense urge to urinate that’s followed by an involuntary loss of urine. Urge incontinence can also cause you to urinate small amounts more often, even throughout the night (nocturia).
Overflow incontinence is the culprit when you experience frequent or constant dribbling of urine that’s caused by incomplete emptying of your bladder.
Men and women alike can have problems with urinary incontinence, sometimes more than one type, but women tend to develop stress incontinence more frequently than men.
What causes urinary incontinence?
Urinary incontinence may be due to certain foods, beverages, and medicines that stimulate your bladder, such as:
- Citrus fruits and other foods/beverages high in sugar or acid content
- Chocolate, coffee, tea, and other products that contain caffeine
- Carbonated drinks, including sparkling water
- Artificial sweeteners
- Chili peppers and other spicy foods
Sedatives, muscle relaxants, blood pressure medication, and large doses of vitamin C can also cause frequent urination and incontinence.
Medical conditions that can also cause incontinence include:
- Urinary tract infection
- Enlarged prostate in men
- Menopause in women
- Changes associated with pregnancy and childbirth, such as weakening of the pelvic floor
- Neurological disorders such as Parkinson’s disease
Sometimes urinary incontinence is due to the effects of aging, which can cause weakening of the muscles and other supportive structures of your urinary bladder.
What is the treatment for urinary incontinence?
Urinary incontinence isn’t a disease but a symptom of an underlying condition. Thus, the first step in your treatment is to diagnose the cause. Along with a detailed discussion of your symptoms and a physical exam, your Urology Associates Of Southeastern North Carolina, P.A. specialist may recommend blood tests, urine studies, imaging studies, and other tests to uncover conditions that may be causing your incontinence. The findings direct the course of your treatment.
If you’re struggling with urinary incontinence, you don’t have to live with it. Schedule a visit at Urology Associates Of Southeastern North Carolina, P.A. today. Call or use the online scheduling tool to book your appointment.