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urinary incontinence

Urinary Incontinence

Stress Incontinence

Loss of urine when you exert pressure on your bladder by coughing, sneezing, laughing, exercising or lifting something heavy. Stress urinary incontinence occurs when the sphincter muscle at the bladder is weakened. The problem is especially noticeable when you let your bladder get too full. Physical changes resulting from pregnancy, childbirth and menopause can cause stress incontinence.

Urge Incontinence

This is a sudden, intense urge to urinate, followed by an involuntary loss of urine. Your bladder muscle contracts and may give you a warning of only a few seconds to a minute to reach a restroom. With urge incontinence, you may also need to urinate often. The need to urinate may even wake you up several times a night. The bladder becomes "overactive", or it contracts even when your bladder is not full. Urge incontinence is often called an overactive bladder.

Overflow Incontinence

If you frequently or constantly dribble urine, you may have overflow incontinence. This is an inability to empty your bladder, which leads to overflow. With overflow incontinence, sometimes you may feel as if you never completely empty your bladder. When you try to urinate, you may produce only a weak stream of urine. This type of incontinence is common in people with a damaged bladder or blocked urethra. Nerve damage from diabetes also can lead to overflow incontinence.

Mixed Incontinence

If you experience symptoms of more than one type of urinary incontinence, such as stress incontinence and urge incontinence, you have mixed incontinence. Usually one type is more bothersome than the other is.

Behavioral Modifications

Some patients are able to make behavioral changes in their day-to-day life to alleviate bladder control problems. Typically, we recommend each patient suffering from urinary incontinence attempt behavioral modifications first to avoid medications or surgery. The first step in behavioral modification is to keep a voiding diary, which will help us get a better understanding of your voiding patterns over a 3 day period of time. We will give you a voiding diary during your first visit to our specialty center.

Excessive Fluid Intake
Your voiding diary may tell us that you tend to leak after you consume a high volume of fluids. Drinking too much fluid of any kind makes you urinate more often. Drinking too much fluid over a short period of time can overwhelm your bladder and create a strong sense of urgency.

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