Urinary Incontinence Treatment: Make an Informed Choice
Urinary incontinence is a symptom of an underlying medical problem affecting millions of people from all walks of life all over the world. This condition is more common in older people aged 70 and above. This is not a natural part of aging since there are younger people who suffer from this. Although urinary incontinence may be a life-changing condition it is not an incurable disease and it should not curtail your passion for living. Choose the option of getting the right urinary incontinence treatment from your doctor.
The kind of treatment depends on the type of urinary incontinence one has. Your doctor or a continence specialist is the best person to determine which type of incontinence you are suffering from:
- Stress incontinence
- Urge incontinence
- Overflow incontinence
- Functional incontinence
The continence specialist can then recommend the best approach to treatment and management as needed. The following methods of treatment are classified as:
- Bladder re-training. The incontinent has to learn again how to delay urination after feeling the urge to urinate and how to control the frequency of urination.
- Lifestyle change. Most hard working individuals consider going to the toilet a waste of time thus tends to delay voiding until break time. This habit of delaying may cause overflow incontinence and urinary tract infections.
- Food and Diet Management. Lessen if not eliminate caffeine-based foods and carbonated drinks which are known to be bladder irritants and kidney stone precursors.
- Kegel Exercise Routine. This is the exercise for the pelvic floor muscles encircling the urethra and the bladder. This exercise aims to strengthen this area.
- Anti-cholinergic Medicines. These are prescription medicines that helps calm the overactive bladder.
- Topical Vaginal Cream. This is an oestrogen-based cream applied in the urethra and vaginal area to help tone these tissues.
- Anti-depressants to treat mixed incontinence
Internal Medical Devices
- Urethral Inserts are absorbent tampon-like plugs inserted in the vaginal cavity to absorb accidental leaks.
- Pessary is a hard ring inserted inside the vagina to support the collapsed vaginal wall that squeezes the bladder.
Surgery is the last option if all kinds of treatment fail. If surgery is inevitable the following procedures may be considered:
- Sling Procedure. This is an invasive surgical procedure of making a “sling” around the bladder neck for support and closure of the urethra to treat stress incontinence.
- Urinary Sphincter Implant. This is an artificial self-controlled valve implanted around the bladder neck of men who have weak sphincters due to enlarged prostate gland.
Whatever kind of urinary incontinence treatment you may undergo be sure you are making an informed choice and your family and friends are there as a strong support group for you. Urinary incontinence is not a social stigma; it is a fact of life.
Filed under: Urinary Incontinence