What is Urge Incontinence-Causes and Symptoms
As our ages advance, our body systems slow down and start to break down. The wear and tear of our organs depend on how well we have lived and how we have taken care of ourselves despite the unfriendly radicals in our environment. One of the systems that usually takes the brunt is our urinary system. Acting as a filtration system, the body expels the liquid waste product of metabolism through the micturation process or the process of urination. When this system fails because of whatever reason, the body suffers too and like the domino effect, one system down and remains unchecked means all systems will follow suit eventually.
One of the disorders of the urinary system a person may suffer is urge incontinence. This condition gives the affected person the sudden urge to urinate, hence the name, and the urge can be so acute that the person cannot get to the toilet in time. When this happens, involuntary loss of urine may result. The nerves serving the bladder muscles send signals to the brain that the bladder is filling up and needs to void. The brain in turn commands the bladder to contract to dispel the urine and along with a weak pelvic floor muscles uncontrollable voiding happens.
Urinary incontinence is a sensitive issue for many sufferers and not many have the positive attitude to carry this through their lives. This can be a very embarrassing issue and to be in a “leaking situation” can be very unpleasant. Anxiety, depression and anti-social behaviours are manifestations common to people with urinary incontinence. Incontinence is not a disease rather it is a symptom of an underlying medical condition.
In women, pregnancy and childbirth weakens the pelvic floor muscles. Large babies and assisted delivery may damage the uterus and surrounding tissues causing prolapsed uterine walls that may press on the bladder. Tumours or non-malignant neoplasm, cystitis and heavy straining damage the nerves enervating the bladder and the underlying muscles. In men, an enlarged prostate gland (Benign Prostatic Hypertrophy) often causes the incontinence. Diabetes and other neurologic disorders like Alzheimer’s disease and multiple sclerosis damages the sacral nerves causing urge incontinence.
Careful evaluation of the patient’s history of urinary problems and the physical checkups and laboratory tests will help the physician in arriving at an objective prognosis. Treatment of the underlying medical reason usually cures the symptoms. Most of the light to moderate type of incontinences has a high chance of recovery with early detection and proper diagnosis. It is important to seek medical attention at the onset of the problem to avoid irreversible damage. There are treatment options available aside from the palliative measures one can use to manage the leaks and dribbles.
Severe urge incontinence may require surgery to correct the disorder. In some cases where surgery is not possible anymore such as with patients suffering from dementia due to Parkinson’s or Alzheimer’s disease or irreversible paralysis, management of the symptoms is the only recourse. There are incontinence products sold on the market that offers maximum protection from the uncomfortable wetness and embarrassing smell. Whatever your needs are the continence specialist can help you find the right product for you. There is no need to hide from the people you love and the friends that make up your social environment; there is more to life than living with incontinence.
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