What is urinary incontinence?

Urinary incontinence is leaking of urine, and you can not control it


Did you know that there are FOUR types of urinary leakage?

1 stress incontinence – Urine leaks out at times when your bladder or belly is under sudden increase of pressure; for example, when you sneeze, cough,laugh,jump or run
2 urge incontinence –  A sudden, intense urge to pass urine occurs and bladder empties because of it.

3 overflow incontinence  – when you’re unable to fully empty your bladder and every time new urine arrives in the bladder from the kidneys, some urine leaks out, almost like a cup that runs over because it is overfilled.
4 total incontinence – when your bladder can’t store any urine at all and urine leaks 24 hours of the day.

What is mixed incontinence?

Mixed incontinence is when a patient has symptoms of more than one type of incontinence, frequently Stress Incontinence and Urge Incontinence

What can cause bladder incontinence?

  • Menopause which usually occurs in women aged between 48 and 55 years
  • Hysterectomy is a major operation involving womb removal, it can cause damage to the bladder.
  • Constipation, a full bowel can press on a bladder causing urge incontinence or can block the flow of urine, causing overflow incontinence.
  • Consuming diuretics such as some types of antidepressants and blood pressure lowering medication. Alcohol is a diuretic and caffeine is also considered one.
  • Enlarged prostate presses against the urethra 
  • Pregnancy causes incrteased pressure on the bladder
  • Childbirth cannot only damage muscles around the bladder, but also damage bladder nerves. 
  • Surgical complications 
  • Treatment for some cancers can weaken the nerves around the bladder (eg radiation/surgery)
  • Urinary Tract Infections irritate the bladder causing the urge to urinate.
  • Neurological Disorders like Parkinson’s or brain tumours may affect bladder control
  • Obesity a common cause of incontinence as it puts undue pressure on the bladder, pushing urine against the bladder walls, weakening them over time.
  • Medications can make the bladder more overactive
  • Estrogen deficiency can cause decreased support of the bladder tissue 

There are many treatment options for bladder incontinence and a pelvic health physiotherapist can evaluate and treat bladder incontinence

For more information on WORLD CONTINENCE WEEK go to  https://www.theurologyfoundation.org/get-involved/tuf-campaign-focus