7 urinary incontinence myths and one of the best ways to beat it


With World Continence Week (19th – 23rd June) approaching, Healthista spoke to Gynaecologist Dr Gabrielle Downey who’s right here to bust the most typical myths about urinary incontinence, plus she provides her professional recommendation on the way to repair it 

Whereas leaking involuntarily may be distressing it will probably assist understanding that you’re not alone. Urinary incontinence is all too widespread, affecting over 6 million girls within the UK (that’s greater than all the inhabitants of New Zealand).

It could possibly result in social embarrassment and the avoidance of intimate relationships. Nevertheless this downside may be solved – so don’t tolerate it. Dwelling with a nappy isn’t best at any age.

affecting over 6 million girls within the UK

Listed here are among the greatest myths about urinary incontinence, adopted by the principle forms of urinary incontinence and the way to deal with them:

Delusion 1: it naturally happens after having kids

Though extra widespread if you’re older, it’s not pure and you may be helped or cured with an correct analysis and therapy. Vaginal cones, vaginal rings and tampons can all assist the bladder neck.

Staying lively throughout your being pregnant, working towards pelvic ground workout routines previous to supply and controlling the supply of the infant’s head to permit the muscle tissue to stretch slowly may also assist minimise the chance.

While childbirth could carry incontinence on sooner, not all girls who’ve given start will develop incontinence and girls who’ve by no means been pregnant could develop into incontinent. There are doubtless many elements leading to urinary incontinence resembling genetics, life-style or ageing.

READ MORE: 7 causes you suppose you’ll be able to’t breastfeed and what to do as a substitute

childbirth, 7 myths about urinary incontinence by healthista

Delusion 2: it’s the similar for everybody.

No. It could possibly vary from a minor leak to a moist ground so the problems can differ vastly from individual to individual.

Delusion three: nobody ought to know

That is undoubtedly not the case! While it might really feel embarrassing to you all well being care skilled have a profound understanding of the situation and the way it can have an effect on you medically and psychologically.

Their intervention can change your life considerably for the higher. You do not need to stay with it so please search assist. All assistance is obtainable on the NHS.

Delusion four: it’s an inevitable a part of ageing

Urinary incontinence can have an effect on all ages not simply individuals in older age. Whereas the frequency of incontinence will increase with age (particularly after the menopause as lack of oestrogen performs a task), the issue may be current at any age.

Delusion 5: we must always all drink not less than eight glasses of water a day

The reality is, extreme fluid consumption provides no well being advantages and may make incontinence worse. The kidneys act as a filter and regulate the quantity of salt/water our physique wants.

Caffeine, alcohol and synthetic sweeteners in weight loss program drinks work as diuretics – in different phrases, they trigger the physique to supply extra urine and in addition make bladder points worse.

READ MORE: ‘Menopause signs made me suppose I had dementia’

woman drinking water, 7 myths about urinary incontinence by healthista

Delusion 6: medicines are the perfect therapy

Drugs can deal with overactive bladder or urge incontinence however most individuals with overactive bladder don’t require medicine. Behaviour modification, resembling lowering consumption of fluids and following a schedule for urination can go a good distance to assist.

Bladder retraining is mainly reconditioning the management the bladder has over us – like toddlers. It could possibly assist these with urge incontinence. Drugs for overactive bladder ought to solely be used along with behavioural administration and ideally below the care of a specialist.

Delusion 7: it will probably solely be handled with surgical procedure

While some forms of incontinence should be managed with surgical procedure, most can reply to much less invasive interventions resembling physiotherapy, medicine and adjusted behaviours.

pills, 7 myths about urinary incontinence by healthista

Dealing with urinary incontinence

There are just a few methods you’ll be able to minimise your danger of urinary incontinence. In case you are obese and your BMI is over 35, shedding pounds will assist your incontinence enhance.

Staying lively throughout your being pregnant, practising pelvic ground workout routines previous to supply and controlling the supply of the infant’s head to permit the muscle tissue to stretch slowly may also assist minimise the chance.

Communicate to a physio or your well being care assistant about this and so they may help you discover merchandise that may improve the tone of your pelvic ground. You possibly can additionally select to have a caesarian to cut back this danger – it will probably decrease the possibility of bladder issues by 50 p.c.

It could possibly additionally assist to try to maintain in your wee if you want the bathroom

It could possibly additionally assist to try to maintain in your wee if you want the bathroom. Begin off by holding solely when within the space of a rest room after which construct up your bladder till it’s robust sufficient to attend exterior.

However in the event you already undergo from urinary incontinence and are searching for a solution to repair your downside, listed here are the different sorts and the way to strategy them.

Stress Incontinence

That is if you leak urine if you cough, sneeze and train. In actuality, it will probably happen anytime that you just improve the stress in your bladder.

The primary purpose is a weak point of the neck of the bladder (sphincter) or the bladder has slipped downwards because the pelvic ground muscle tissue have been broken. The quantity misplaced is often small.

Stress incontinence can have an effect on individuals of any age however it’s particularly widespread after being pregnant and issues typically worsen after menopause.

Tips on how to repair it 

Pelvic ground workout routines by a correctly skilled physiotherapist can scale back the signs by as much as 70 p.c. Surgical remedies may additionally be appropriate for extra excessive circumstances of stress incontinence.

Tape or sling procedures are used to cut back stress on the bladder or strengthen the muscle tissue that management urination. This surgical procedure works right away and you’d be absolutely recovered inside 5 days.

READ MORE: Intestine Well being & The Microbiome: The Nutritionist’s Information – Half ONE

urinary incontinence slider, 7 myths about urinary incontinence and the best way to treat it by healthista

Urge Incontinence

This implies you get the urge to go and should get there or you’ll leak. You cross solely small quantities however it will probably drive you mad as will probably be up 15 to 20 occasions day and night time. It’s attributable to the bladder sending alerts to your mind saying it’s full when it isn’t. Both the nerves have develop into very delicate or the muscle is twitchy.

Tips on how to repair it

Extra fluid, notably irritants resembling caffeine and alcohol could make the scenario worse. It’s best to scale back the quantity that you just drink within the night if getting up at night time is especially troublesome. Typically sexually transmitted infections (STIs) resembling chlamydia are accountable so at all times ask for the urine to be examined for bugs.

scale back the quantity that you just drink within the night

As soon as once more physio could assist. Tablets  – primarily medicine referred to as anticholinergic medicine that stabilise the bladder by slowing down the nerve alerts and ‘retraining’ the bladder by exercising some management of the circulation and resisting the urges often deal with this situation. They’ll have some unintended effects together with dry mouth, blurred imaginative and prescient and dry eyes.

Operations to deal with urge incontinence embody enlarging the bladder or implanting a tool that stimulates the nerve that controls the muscle tissue, this may be accomplished on the NHS.

READ MORE: Interval panties? All the things you might want to find out about menstrual underwear

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Overflow incontinence

That is when your bladder doesn’t empty correctly so the surplus wee leaks out. The trigger is often a narrowing of the urethra (the tube from the bladder to the skin) and the reason for that is both congenital (you had been born with it) or STIs (once more!). This downside is extra widespread in youthful girls.

Tips on how to repair it 

It may be handled by stretching the urethra or by intermittent self-catheterisation which is if you use a catheter tube to empty your bladder. It’s finest to see a physician about this and so they can advise you on the subsequent steps to take.

Complete incontinence

That is if you leak on a regular basis. Fortunately it’s very uncommon however it may be very tough to deal with. This can be due to nerve injury or a critical complication of surgical procedure referred to as a fistula. It’s additionally attainable to have a combination of each stress and urge urinary incontinence.

Extra embarrassingly some girls leak throughout intercourse and thus keep away from intimacy, it’s attributable to involuntary contractions of the bladder.

Tips on how to repair it 

As this problem is extra critical it may be fastened both with everlasting catheterisation or bypass surgical procedure utilizing a small loop of bowel to wee in to a bag.

See your GP when you’ve got any sort of urinary incontinence. They need to take a historical past, look at you for prolapse – that is the weak point of the vaginal wall with the bladder protruding in to it. Round 10 p.c of girls who’ve had a vaginal supply may have some type of prolapse.

They will even verify your urine for an infection. Typically they ask you to maintain a diary to see how a lot you might be ingesting and the way typically you might be weeing.

dr downey

Dr. Gabrielle Downey is a Birmingham-based advisor gynaecologist. She has been a advisor gynaecologist on the Birmingham Metropolis Hospital for over 15 years.

Dr. Downey publishes frequently in famend journals and writes for medical textbooks, was a co-author to the present NHS cervical smear program and has specialist experience in issues resembling irregular smears amongst many different situations.




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