Incontinence is an annoying problem, and one that many people are ashamed of. It means that you lose urine unintentionally. However, inability to hold urine properly or accidentally letting urine flow during exertion is common. Here we discuss two different forms of incontinence, what the causes can be and the treatment options.
Different types of incontinence
We can distinguish between two types of incontinence, namely effort incontinence and urge incontinence. In the case of stress incontinence, a person loses urine during exertion. This includes activities such as jumping, running, climbing stairs and lifting. In addition, coughing, laughing or sneezing can also cause someone to suddenly lose urine. When there is urge incontinence, also called urge incontinence, a person suddenly feels the urge to urinate, but is no longer able to hold it back.
What are the causes of this?
The causes of incontinence can vary widely. In many cases it is a problem that arises as we get older. In addition, women can also suffer from incontinence complaints after giving birth. The most common causes of incontinence are:
- Weakened pelvic floor muscles
- The urethra no longer closes properly
- Overactive bladder with neurological cause
- In men: an enlarged prostate
- Surgical procedure
Some causes are very clear, but in other cases it may not be clear what really causes it. Sometimes it can also be difficult to determine whether it is effort incontinence or urge incontinence. It is also possible that it is a combination of both. Below we will tell you more about what you can do about this.
What can I do about incontinence?
To reduce incontinence, it is essential to first know which form of incontinence it is. A doctor may advise you to keep track of everything in a diary for two weeks. Note at what time urine leakage occurred and during which activity. Also keep track of what times you went to the toilet to urinate.
From this data, your doctor can determine whether it is stress incontinence or urge incontinence. With effort incontinence it is important to do exercises that strengthen your pelvic floor muscles. In the case of urge incontinence, exercises for the bladder muscle are useful.
Can medications help incontinence?
In addition to exercise, a doctor may also prescribe medications to reduce the problem. For urge incontinence, medications such as parasympatholytics can relax the overactive bladder muscles and reduce involuntary contractions of the bladder. Furthermore, a doctor can also prescribe Botulinum A toxin for an overactive bladder muscle. In the case of stress incontinence, Duloxetine can help. This medicine helps strengthen the muscles around the urethra.
Which incontinence products are the best?
Incontinence problems cannot always be solved immediately or completely. In that case, incontinence materials provide more comfort. There are various options. Which materials are best for you is very personal. You can get advice from your doctor and your pharmacist. Then you can try out what you like best.