Did you know that urinary incontinence affects about one-quarter to one-third of women and men in the United States? Are you experiencing or wondering if you’re experiencing urinary problems?

In this article, explore the different types of urinary incontinence. Read on to explore all about the different types along with treatment options. You don’t have to suffer from your symptoms, you can get treatment today!

What Is Urinary Incontinence? 

When exploring the different types of urinary incontinence, it’s important to understand that it’s the loss of bladder control. You might notice the symptoms come and go. For example, some notice problems when they sneeze or cough, whereas others can experience a constant urge to urinate.

While it affects older populations, it can impact all ages. If you notice it’s impacting your daily life, you won’t want to hesitate in seeing a doctor.

The Different Types of Urinary Incontinence

Do you find the urge to urinate comes only at certain times, or is it constant? There are different types of urinary incontinence, so it’s important to see a doctor to figure out which you’re experiencing. You can try an incontinence solution that’ll work for you, and provide relief.

Urge Incontinence 

Another name for urge incontinence is known as an overactive bladder. You’ll notice you lose your urine before you reach the toilet.

Common symptoms can include waking up multiple times at night to urinate, needing to urinate more than 8 times in one day, and feeling like you won’t reach the toilet in time. There are different health conditions that can cause this such as Parkinson’s, an enlarged prostate gland, and multiple sclerosis.

Functional Incontinence

This is when your bladder control and urinary system are operating correctly, but you can’t reach the toilet. This can be due to not finding a toilet, or not knowing when you need to use it. Common conditions that cause this can be arthritis, cerebral palsy, and dementia.

Mixed Incontinence

If you experience both stress incontinence and an overactive bladder it’s what’s known as mixed incontinence. Both women and men can experience this.

Men can experience it if they have surgery for an enlarged prostate or prostate removal. Those of older age tend to experience it when their bodies are frail.

Stress Incontinence

You can notice the different types of stress urinary incontinence by the behaviors lead to your bladder problems. Do you notice that when you laugh, jump, or cough you have urine leakage?

While it’s called stress incontinence, it doesn’t have to do with your emotions at all. When you experience it, you’ll notice a small amount that leaks out. For severe cases, you’ll notice that a full bladder will stop your body from holding urine. This can happen even if there’s no urge to urinate.

This occurs when your pelvic floor muscles or urethral sphincter have been damaged or weakened. There are 2 types of stress incontinence. These include intrinsic sphincter deficiency and urethral hyper mobility.

In intrinsic sphincter deficiency, you’ll notice that problems within the urinary sphincter cause urinary problems. Many believe that women who have delivered naturally are more likely to experience stress incontinence. This is due to the birth causing damage to the pelvic floor muscles.

For urethral hyper mobility, this is where your urethra and bladder shift down when your abdominal pressure rises. This means there’s no support for the urethra to keep it from opening.

Reflex Incontinence

This is where there’s a disruption in the signals from your brain to the spinal cord. This can be due to a spinal cord injury, or surgical trauma. This causes leakage and dysfunction in the bladder muscles. Reflex incontinence can cause leaking even if you don’t have the feeling of the need to urinate.

Overflow Incontinence

Do you notice that you can’t empty your bladder? This is what’s known as overflow incontinence. You might notice that you dribble urine.

The cause of overflow incontinence can include medications, constipation, nerve damage, weak bladder muscles, or certain conditions such as an enlarged prostate. This can lead to an infection if you don’t see a doctor about your symptoms.

Fecal Incontinence

Did you know that you can suffer incontinence from your bowels? This is what’s known as fecal incontinence.

This can be due to weak back passage muscles, bowel disease, or long term straining. Symptoms can include gas, constipation, diarrhea, or bloating.

Some only experience it when they have diarrhea, but for others it’s constant. You might notice that you can’t make it to the toilet before you defecate yourself. Passive incontinence is where you don’t know that you need to pass stool.

To prevent fecal incontinence, avoid straining during your bowel movements. This can cause your anal sphincter muscles to weaken.

Another way to avoid it is to reduce your constipation. Some ways to do this are through high-fiber foods, drinking water, and increasing your exercise. You’ll also want to avoid diarrhea as best you can.

Diagnosing Urinary Incontinence

Speak with your doctor about the urinary incontinence you’re experiencing. Your doctor might recommend that you have a urinalysis, post-void residual measurement, or keep a bladder diary.

When you keep a bladder diary, you’ll write down how often you urinate, how much comes out when you urinate, and how much you drink throughout the day. You’ll also write down how many times you have incontinence, or the need to urinate.

A urinalysis is where your doctor will have a sample of your urine taken to check for an infection or other problems. Another option is what’s known as post-void residual measurement.

Post-void residual measurement is where you’ll urinate into a container that will measure your urine output. Your doctor will check to see how much urine is left in your bladder with either an ultrasound or catheter. If you have a large amount left, that can mean you have a problem with your bladder muscles, nerves, or an obstruction within your urinary tract.

Exploring the Different Types of Urinary Incontinence

Now that you’ve explored the different types of urinary incontinence, you should be well on your way to deciding your next step. Would you like to read more about lifestyle and health? Check out our other articles today for everything from fashion and food, to cleaning and disinfecting.

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