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What Causes Urinary Incontinence? (Symptoms & Treatments)

Posted on June 13, 2023 at 3:45 PM by Gabrielson Clinic

While bladder leaks can seem embarrassing, they are a common occurrence for many women. More than 4 in 10 women, 65 and older, have urinary incontinence. Urinary incontinence is twice as likely to happen to women than men (according to The Office on Women’s Health). 

Knowing what causes urinary incontinence is the first step towards knowing what steps you should take next. 

What Is Urinary Incontinence?

Urinary incontinence is the loss of bladder control. Simply put, it is the inability to control when and where you go to the bathroom. There are a variety of different types of urinary incontinence including urge incontinence (also known as an overactive bladder), overflow incontinence, and stress incontinence.

What Are The Symptoms Of Urinary Incontinence?

The main symptom of urinary incontinence is a constant drippage of urine and/or occasional bladder leakage. These bladder leaks often happen while exercising, coughing, or laughing. Urinary incontinence is not a disease by itself, but rather a symptom of another health problem. As a result, many women experiencing bladder incontinence also experience other urinary problems such as:

  • Bladder spasms/bladder pressure that causes a strong urge to urinate
  • Urinating while sleeping (bedwetting)
  • Frequent urination (at least 8+ times a day)

What Causes Urinary Incontinence?

Urinary incontinence can be caused by a wide range of factors, some being temporary or short-term causes and some due to chronic or long-term causes.

Overall, most causes of urinary incontinence are due to weak pelvic floor muscles. That being said, conditions that impact the strength of your pelvic floor can often lead to issues with a leaky bladder.

Short-Term Causes Of Bladder Leaks

Temporary health conditions that can cause urinary incontinence include:

  • Urinary Tract Infections (UTIs)
  • Pregnancy
  • Medications

Chronic Causes Of Bladder Leaks

Long-term health conditions that can cause urinary incontinence include:

  • Pelvic Floor Disorders
  • Strokes
  • Menopause
  • Multiple Sclerosis (MS)

Urinary Incontinence Treatment Options

If incontinence is disrupting your daily activities, it may be time to see a doctor to receive a diagnosis. Urinary incontinence can be diagnosed through a variety of methods such as a physical exam, a urodynamic test, or an ultrasound.

A gynecologist can work with you to create a personalized treatment plan to help you mitigate and manage urinary incontinence. Treatments for urinary incontinence can include:

  • Nonsurgical Treatments
    • Urinary Incontinence Medications
    • Pelvic Floor Exercises
    • Lifestyle Adjustments
  • Surgical Treatments
    • Botox Injections
    • Coaptite injectable implants
    • InterStim (a neurostimulator device)
    • Urethral Sling Procedures 

Learn more about the surgical incontinence treatments we offer at The Gabrielson Clinic for Women.

Stop Letting Bladder Leaks Impact Your Life

Bladder leaks can be frustrating and embarrassing, but they don’t have to keep impacting your life. The Gabrielson Clinic for Women offers consultations and a variety of both nonsurgical and surgical procedures that effectively treat incontinence. If you’re ready to stop bladder leaks so that you can get back to a normal and comfortable life, schedule a consultation today.

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