Urinary Incontinence in Women: What You Need to Know
- 08 Nov 2019
- #Health Awareness
- #Urinary Tract Infection
- #Women's Health
Urinary incontinence, or bladder leakage, is the loss of bladder control. The severity ranges from occasional urine leakage when you sneeze or cough, to an intense urge to urinate suddenly.
Urinary incontinence affects women twice as much as it affects men. It can be caused due to multiple reasons. However, it can be managed with simple changes in lifestyle and certain medical treatments.
Urinary incontinence, or bladder leakage, is a symptom for multiple medical conditions. It is not a disease in itself. The causes of urinary incontinence will depend on the type of leakage you’re experiencing.
Women are twice as more susceptible to urinary incontinence than men. That is because women have unique reproductive health events like pregnancy, childbirth, and menopause that can affect bladder muscles and ligaments, causing bladder leakage.
You may be at risk of urinary incontinence if:
During pregnancy, as your unborn baby keeps growing in size, it starts pushing down on your bladder, pelvic floor muscles, and urethra. With time, it causes your pelvic floor muscles to weaken and result in urine leakage.
This can continue into childbirth as well because your muscles are still healing. Problems during labour, or during vaginal birth can weaken the muscles and damage nerves that control your bladder. But if you’re having bladder leakage even after 6 weeks since childbirth, talk to your doctor.
Researchers believe that low levels of oestrogen in a woman’s body after menopause may weaken the urethra - which helps keep urine in your bladder until you’re ready to urinate. Also, like all other muscles, your bladder muscles will also weaken with age, which may also be a cause of urinary incontinence after menopause.
There are multiple treatment methods for urinary incontinence. Depending on the cause of your bladder leakage, your doctor will recommend a treatment method for you. Treatments include:
There are various other treatment methods for urinary incontinence. Consult your doctor to know the best-suited treatment method for you.
Urinary incontinence is not always preventable, especially if it is caused due to medical conditions or disorders. However, if you are experiencing temporary urinary incontinence, keep in mind the following tips to prevent bladder leakage:
If you’re dealing with urinary incontinence, consult your doctor and make simple lifestyle changes, to begin with.
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