What is Urinary Incontinence
Loss of bladder control is a common but embarrassing problem. Having a strong urge to urinate and experiencing urinary leakage when coughing or sneezing are signs of urinary incontinence.
Urinary incontinence might be more common amongst older people but this doesn’t mean it can’t occur earlier in life. The severity of the concern will also vary between people. It does also tend to affect twice as many women as men. This is mainly because of menopause, pregnancy and childbirth. These life events can affect both the bladder and urethra.
There are two types of urinary incontinence:
- Stress incontinence – This type of incontinence tends to affect younger people and is the most common. Stress incontinence occurs when weak pelvic floor muscles place stress on the bladder and urethra. Everyday actions such as coughing, sneezing and laughing can all cause urine to leak.
- Urge incontinence – This type of incontinence is paired with a frequent and urgent need to urinate. With this, you don’t always urinate once you do manage to get to the bathroom. This type of incontinence is also often referred to as an overactive bladder and is more common in older people. Urine leakage can also occur when you’re least expecting it such as when sleeping or drinking water.
It is also possible to have both types of incontinence but this isn’t as common as just having one.
Causes of Urinary Incontinence
Problems with the muscles and nerves that aid in bladder control and passing urine is the primary cause of urinary incontinence. Life events such as pregnancy and menopause can cause these changes.
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Life events such as pregnancy and
menopause can cause urinary incontinence.
Some of the other causes of incontinence include:
- Obesity and excess weight – Being overweight can place additional pressure on the bladder.
- Constipation – Chronic constipation can also place additional strain on the bladder and pelvic floor muscles, causing them to weaken.
- Surgery – Any procedures that involve the reproductive organs can damage the pelvic floor muscles.
- Medication – Diuretics are one type of medication that can lead to urinary incontinence.
- Caffeine – Drinking excessive amounts of caffeine can cause the bladder to fill quicker, causing urine to leak.
- Infection – Urinary tract infections can cause incontinence for short periods of time until the infection clears up.
Urinary Incontinence Treatment
At Skin Confidence Clinic, we use the Emsella Chair by BTL to treat urinary incontinence and lax vaginal walls.
This FDA-approved device uses high-intensity electromagnetic energy to activate the neurons of the pelvic floor. This process helps strengthen the muscles of the vagina as well as the pelvic floor.
This treatment can help both men and women address the effects of this common concern. However, it does tend to be more popular amongst women.
No preparation is required for this treatment and it won’t take longer than 30 minutes to complete. All that’s required during an Emsella session is for you to sit comfortably on a chair. During your treatment, you’re free to read, catch up on emails or simply relax. Patients remain fully clothed throughout.
Once the Emsella chair is activated, the pelvic floor muscles will begin to contract, which will create a tingling sensation. The chair replicates kegel exercises but at a much higher frequency and intensity.
Since this treatment is completely non-invasive, you’re free to return home or go back to work directly after your appointment. In many instances, only one session is required to experience a noticeable difference. For most other patients, however, at least six sessions spaced several days apart are required.
Urinary incontinence can return if the pelvic muscles weaken again or if certain lifestyle changes occur. Further treatment might be required to rectify this later on in life.
Urinary incontinence might be more common amongst older people but this doesn’t mean it can’t occur earlier in life.