What percentage of the population are affected by urinary incontinence? Well, according to the University of Birmingham, research shows that the average rate of incontinence in the UK is around -
- 40% of women
- 10% of men
It is thought that around 30% of women endure incontinence that has an impact on their life.
What is Urinary Incontinence?
Urinary incontinence is, quite simply, when you accidentally leak urine. It can affect anyone; however, it is more prevalent in older women.
It is a very common condition that most people don’t like to talk about, this, in turn, can make it feel like a much bigger problem that it needs to be.
Urinary incontinence might be temporary, or long-lasting, and it could be a sign of an underlying health condition.
How is Urinary Incontinence Diagnosed?
Urinary incontinence can usually be diagnosed by your GP. They’ll ask you certain questions, possibly perform a physical examination, and may ask you to keep a bladder diary for a few days.
You may be asked to give a urine sample so your GP can check for a UTI, and you might need to be booked in for an ultrasound scan to check your bladder is performing correctly.
As urinary incontinence is such a common condition, don’t be worried about speaking to your GP about it – they'll have heard your concerns, hundreds of times before.
Causes of Urinary Incontinence
If you think you’re suffering from temporary urinary incontinence, your urinary incontinence causes may be due to -
- A UTI or vaginal infection
- As a response to medication you’re taking
If your urinary incontinence is chronic – or long-lasting, then your urinary incontinence causes may be due to -
- Interstitial cystitis
- Weakened muscles in the pelvic floor
- Overactive muscles in the bladder
- As a result of a disability that means you’re not able to get to the toilet quickly
- Nerve damage that is responsible for bladder control
- Neurological conditions like Parkinson’s disease, a stroke, or multiple sclerosis
- An obstruction
- As a result of surgery
Women can also experience long-term urinary incontinence as a result of pregnancy, giving birth, going through the menopause, or after a hysterectomy.
Male urinary incontinence, on the other hand, can be due to prostate cancer, an enlarged prostate, or benign prostatic hyperplasia.
What are the 4 Types of Urinary Incontinence?
Urinary incontinence can be split into four main categories. They are -
- Stress incontinence – this is when a movement or activity can cause your bladder to leak urine due to pressure placed on it. This could happen when you sneeze, cough, or lift weights, or dance for instance
- Overactive bladder – this is when you feel an urgent need to wee, but aren’t able to get to the toilet in time. This can be caused by nerves and muscles in the bladder
- Mixed incontinence – if your urinary incontinence is caused by a number of factors, this is called mixed incontinence. So, you may experience stress incontinence alongside an overactive bladder
- Overflow incontinence – this is when you’re not able to fully empty your bladder when you pay a visit to the toilet. Because of this, your bladder quickly fills up. This can result in leaking urine between toilet visits
How to Prevent Urinary Incontinence
There are natural remedies for urinary incontinence that you might be interested in trying. They range from specific supplements you can take, to daily exercises.
For female and male urinary incontinence treatment, you might like to try -
- Pelvic floor exercises such as these ones that anyone can try
- Cutting down your alcohol and caffeine intake
- Stopping smoking
- Vitamin D – if you have normal levels you are much less likely to experience urinary incontinence issues
- Saw palmetto – it's been shown to help curb the need to urinate often
- Treat constipation – pressure from the bowel can affect the bladder and may be behind your urinary incontinence
Urinary Incontinence Treatment
If you’ve tried at-home remedies for the treatment of urinary incontinence and you’re not getting the results you’d hoped for, then it might be time to turn to technology. The new Emsella treatment at Este is a ground-breaking male and female urinary incontinence device and can help tackle a leaking, overactive bladder effectively.
Emsella is an electromagnetic device that looks just like a chair. You sit on it, fully clothed, for a treatment time of 28 minutes and whilst you’re there, the high intensity focused electromagnetic energy (HIFEM) works to stimulate and build up your pelvic floor muscles.
Sitting on the Emsella chair for 28 minutes is the equivalent of doing 11,000 pelvic floor exercises – but without the effort.
Don’t let a little bit of wee ruin your life. Wave goodbye to incontinence pads and try the new Emsella treatment at Este and feel confident again.
We look forward to helping you feel good about yourself again! Book a consultation at your nearest Este clinic.