Watch Dr. Gauta's Lecture on Female Incontinence

Types of Incontinence

“Urinary incontinence” is a general term and symptoms can range from mild leaking to uncontrollable wetting. It can happen to anyone, but it becomes more common with age. There are many types of urinary incontinence, and sometimes a woman may have more than one of the following types:

  • Stress Incontinence

If the muscles that keep your bladder closed are weak, you may have accidents when you sneeze, laugh, lift a heavy object or perform other movements that put pressure on your bladder. This is stress incontinence. This type of incontinence is quite common in younger women due to physical changes resulting from pregnancy and childbirth, though menopause too can cause stress incontinence. Click here more information about this embarrassing problem.

  • Urgency Incontinence

If you lose urine for no apparent reason after suddenly feeling the need or urge to urinate, you may have urgency incontinence. Urgency incontinence means that your bladder empties during sleep, after drinking a small amount of water, or even when you hear water running such as when washing dishes or hearing someone taking a shower. Certain fluids and medications such as diuretics or emotional states such as anxiety can worsen this condition. Some medical conditions, such as hyperthyroidism and uncontrolled diabetes can also lead to or worsen urgency incontinence.

  • Overactive Bladder OAB

If bladder muscles become too active, you may feel a strong urge to go to the bathroom when you have little urine in your bladder. This is called Overactive Bladder OAB. If you find yourself going to the bathroom more than seven times a day or twice at night, you may have OAB.

There are a number of specific symptoms of overactive bladder. They include:

  • Frequency - urination eight or more times a day or three or more times at night
  • Urgency - the sudden, strong need to urinate immediately
  • Urgency incontinence - leakage or gushing of urine that follows a sudden, strong urge
  • Nocturia - awaking at night to urinate

Other Types of Incontinence

Stress Incontinence and Urgency Incontinence often occur together in women and this combination is sometimes referred to as Mixed Incontinence. Most women don't have pure stress or urge incontinence, and many studies show that mixed incontinence is the most common type of urine loss in women.

When It’s Not Incontinence

Sometimes there are other conditions that may feel like an incontinence problem or cause unusual pain. The Florida Bladder Institute is well-prepared to evaluate and treat related problems of the urinary system that may be causing your discomfort.

The Florida Bladder Institute can offer several options used in combination or individually depending on your needs. They may include medications, diet modification, bladder retraining and Kegel exercises to strengthen the pelvic muscles.

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