The Different Types of Urinary Incontinence

The Different Types of Urinary Incontinence

An estimated one-third of women and men in the United States experience the unexpected urine leaks of urinary incontinence at some point in life.

To identify the cause of urinary incontinence and treat your condition, Heripsime Ohanian, PhD, MD, FACOG, offers comprehensive services at Bergen Aesthetics

Dr. Ohanian specializes in customized treatment options to reduce the frequency and severity of your urine leaks, so you can enjoy a higher quality of life.

Understanding urinary incontinence

Urinary incontinence makes it difficult for you to control the flow of urine. For many people, this condition is only temporary and results from urinary tract infections (UTIs) or constipation.

However, chronic urinary incontinence can occur because of changes in the pelvic floor muscles that support your bladder due to pregnancy, childbirth, or menopause. Your pelvic floor muscles can also weaken as you get older.

There are several types of urinary incontinence that you can develop as you age or due to an underlying condition.

Types of urinary incontinence

The different types of urinary incontinence describe what’s causing unexpected urine leaks. In general, there are five types that Dr. Ohanian can diagnose and treat:

Urge incontinence

Urge incontinence describes a sudden urge to urinate that’s so intense, you can’t make it to the bathroom in time. You may also need to urinate frequently, especially during the night.

You can develop urge incontinence if you have a UTI or other minor condition or if you have diabetes, a neurological disorder, or other chronic health condition.

Stress incontinence

Stress incontinence describes urine leaks that result from pressure on your bladder. Often, this pressure comes from heavy lifting, laughing, coughing, or sneezing.

Overflow incontinence

Overflow incontinence causes dribbling of urine because you can’t empty your bladder fully. This type of urine leakage can be frequent or constant.

Functional incontinence

Functional incontinence describes urine leaks due to a mental or physical impairment that makes getting to the bathroom in a timely manner difficult.

Mixed incontinence

Mixed incontinence involves more than one type of urinary incontinence. In most cases, it involves two types — urge and stress incontinence.

Treatment options for incontinence

When urinary incontinence is mild and infrequent, you may be able to make lifestyle changes that improve your bladder control. These changes may include going to the bathroom on a schedule and limiting how much caffeine you consume.

If you have more serious incontinence issues, you may need to participate in pelvic floor exercises that strengthen the muscles that support your bladder. These exercises involve tightening your pelvic floor muscles similarly to the way to stop the flow of urine. You should perform these exercises several times a day, even when you’re sitting at your desk or relaxing.

Dr. Ohanian may also suggest electrical stimulation to treat overactive bladder or special medical devices that hold your bladder in place. When conservative therapies are no longer effective at preventing urine leaks, we may recommend urogynecology surgery to treat your condition.

To find out which urinary incontinence treatment option is right for you, call Bergen Aesthetics to schedule a consultation or book an appointment online today. 

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