Types of Incontinence and Simple Solutions

By: granola
There are several different types of bladder problems that can result in incontinence. Depending upon your specific problem, different things are happening with your bladder when you leak urine. Part of the way to fix the problem is to figure out what is wrong and then take steps to prevent the leakage. An urologist can help diagnose your problem and can help you with proper treatment.

One of the main types of incontinence is stress incontinence. This type of bladder problem results in urine leakage when one sneezes, coughs, or laughs. It also happens when one plays sports or lifts something. Usually it is just a small amount of urine that leaks, but this can still be annoying and embarrassing for many people. For the most part, stress incontinence is the result of the muscles supporting the bladder being weakened. Pregnancy and childbirth are the most common reasons for this muscle weakening. Another cause can be straining due to regular constipation. The weakened muscles can't keep the bladder closed, and so some of the urine leaks out.

Urge incontinence is another common bladder condition. This is when one leaks on occasion, but also has frequent urges to go to the bathroom. One might need to go two or three times at night. Urge incontinence is most often the result of one using the toilet instead of "holding it." When you go to the bathroom very frequently, your bladder, which can hold up to 500 mls of urine, gets used to only holding 150-200 mls. Because you only let it hold small amounts, the bladder shrinks, and so it feels full more often. Alcohol and caffeinated drinks can exacerbate the problem.

Another problem is overflow incontinence. Overflow bladder problems happen when the bladder has trouble emptying properly. Urine dribbles out because the bladder was not properly entered when you went to the bathroom. For men, the most common source of the problem is an enlarged prostate gland. If you suddenly find that you are having trouble with bladder incontinence, and it seems like overflow is the problem, it might signal a more serious prostate condition.

Reflex incontinence is a relatively rare bladder problem, but one that can be very embarrassing. This is a condition in which one does not receiving a warning, or an "urge," to go to the bathroom. One urinates without realizing that one needs to, resulting in some very embarrassing situations. Persons with spinal injuries are most susceptible to reflex incontinence, as it is the nerves controlling the bladder that are damaged.

There is another bladder problem known as fecal incontinence. This is fairly rare, and rather easy to cure. This is when feces leak. The most common cause of this type of problem is constipation. This is, perhaps, the most embarrassing form of incontinence.

Many bladder problems can be fixed with proper treatment, provided that they are not too severe. You can speak with your physician about your options, and for a referral to a specialist if necessary.
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