Unexpected urine leaks caused by urinary incontinence becomes more common as you age, or if you have underlying health conditions that affect your bladder and other pelvic organs. But if you’re experiencing frequent leaks of urine, you may be wondering if your condition is ever normal.
At Urology Specialist Group, the team of experienced urologists specialize in evaluating urinary dysfunction, including urinary incontinence. While the condition is common, it’s important to receive a comprehensive diagnostic evaluation to identify the root cause of your incontinence and ensure your body is functioning normally.
Understanding urinary incontinence
Urinary incontinence is terminology used to describe the loss of bladder control. When your ability to control your bladder is reduced, urine can leak out suddenly and unexpectedly.
Your bladder stores urine your kidneys make to remove waste from your body. Within your bladder are muscles that tighten when you need to empty urine, which travels out of your body through a tube known as the urethra. The urethra also has muscles that relax to release urine from your body.
When any of these muscles aren’t functioning properly or become weak, you lose control over your bladder. Dysfunction or damage in the nerves of your bladder can also cause urinary incontinence. As a result, you are likely to experience a sudden urge to urinate and find it difficult to make it to the bathroom in time.
You may also experience sudden urine leaks if you put pressure on your bladder. This pressure may come from your ordinary movements, exercising, or sudden coughs, sneezes, or if you laugh.
Triggers of urinary incontinence
While men and women can experience urinary incontinence issues, women are twice as likely to have urine leaks because of their pelvic structure. Women are also at increased risk for urinary incontinence because of:
- Hormonal changes
Changes in hormones and the body, in general, can lead to the weakening of the pelvic floor muscles that support the bladder. Pregnancy and childbirth can also cause damage to these muscles, making them unable to support the bladder and allowing urine to leak.
Additionally, the structure of a woman’s urethra is shorter than a man’s, so they have less muscle support to prevent urine leaks when there’s weakness or damage in the urethra.
While many of the physical changes that trigger urinary incontinence may primarily be out of your control, there are ways to reduce your risk factors for developing urinary incontinence or experiencing a worsening of your condition.
Easy options for preventing urinary incontinence
The team at Urology Specialist Group offers comprehensive treatments for existing urinary incontinence issues based on the root cause of your condition They also provide guidance for lifestyle changes you can incorporate to reduce your chances of developing urinary incontinence.
An effective way to strengthen the muscles that support your bladder is to do daily pelvic floor exercises, including Kegels. Kegel exercises are easy to do at anytime and involve repeatedly tightening the pelvic muscles you use to stop the stream of urine when you go to the bathroom.
You can also improve your diet and get regular exercise to achieve and maintain a healthy body weight. By dropping excess weight, you can relieve unnecessary pressure on your bladder that contributes to urine leaks.
While you may not have serious health issues at the root of your urinary incontinence issues, it’s always important that you receive an accurate diagnosis from the experienced urologists at Urology Specialist Group.
You can schedule a diagnostic evaluation by calling the office today or by requesting an appointment at Urology Specialist Group online now.