Urinary incontinence affects women medically, emotionally and socially
Urinary incontinence is simply defined as involuntary leakage of urine. For many years, women suffered from the symptoms of urinary incontinence in silence, too embarrassed to talk with their doctors about it. Today, our Grapevine ObGyns encourage patients to talk openly with their physicians so that we can help improve quality of life with expert diagnosis and treatment.
A variety of factors can increase your risk for urinary incontinence
Any woman may experience urinary incontinence, but certain factors have been shown to increase the risk of developing the problem.
- Age—As women age, bladder muscles get weaker and tissues may stretch, affecting the bladder’s ability to hold urine or to empty it. Menopause, which causes a drop in the level of estrogen, also increases risk.
- Pregnancy and childbirth—Both pregnancy and childbirth increase your risk, and it increases based on the number of children delivered.
- Pelvic floor disorders—If you have pelvic organ prolapse, which occurs when the pelvic organs slip out of place and bulge into the vagina, urinary incontinence can be a side effect.
- Medical issues—Neuromuscular problems, urinary tract infections or anatomical issues such as growths that block the urethra put women at risk.
- Medications—Certain medications, alcohol and caffeine can have a diuretic effect, causing more frequent urination.
The three main types of urinary incontinence
Our Grapevine ObGyns can diagnose and treat all three types of urinary incontinence.
- Stress urinary incontinence, or SUI—SUI causes the symptoms women most often associate with urinary incontinence – urine leakage when they cough, laugh, sneeze, exercise or walk.
- Urge incontinence, or overactive bladder—Overactive bladder, or OAB, causes your bladder to feel full, giving you the urge to urinate even when it is not full. OAB can also cause frequent urination and leaking.
- Mixed incontinence—This occurs when women have symptoms of both SUI and OAB.
Lifestyle changes may help reduce urine leakage
If you are experiencing involuntary urine leakage due to urinary incontinence, you should see our Grapevine ObGyns for a medical consultation. We also recommend some lifestyle changes that may help with leakage.
- Maintain a healthy weight. Being overweight puts you at higher risk.
- Avoid drinks that can have a diuretic effect, such as drinks with caffeine or alcohol.
- Several hours before you go to bed, limit your fluid intake to avoid getting up at night to urinate.
- Talk to our Grapevine ObGyns about Kegel exercises and training your bladder.
Our Grapevine ObGyns can help with treatment and diagnosis
If you have been suffering from symptoms of urinary incontinence, contact us so we can diagnose and treat your problem and begin to improve your quality of life.