Types Of Incontinence In Elderly
Some people may only leak urine occasionally, others may constantly dribble urine, while still others experience a complete lack of both bladder and bowel control. There are four different type of incontinence, and the elderly may suffer with all four if their pelvic muscles are particularly weak. They are:
- Stress Incontinence, according to A Place for Mom, this occurs when an increase in abdominal pressure overcomes the closing pressure of the bladder. This may occur when laughing or sneezing
- Urge Incontinence The most common diagnosis, this involves an urgent need to urinate resulting in the loss of urine before one arrives at the toilet.
- Functional Incontinence This diagnosis describes incontinence caused by other disabilities or according to Medscape, chronic impairments of cognitive function and/or mobility that interfere with independent toileting skills
- Overflow Incontinence Is rarely diagnosed, this occurs when ones bladder never completely empties.
The most common form is urge incontinence, where the person is not actually given enough warning before they have to go.
What Are The Symptoms Of Incontinence
The main symptom of incontinence is a leakage of urine. This could be a constant dripping of urine or an occasional experience of leakage. If you have incontinence, you might have large amounts or small amounts of leaked urine. You might experience leakage for a wide variety of reasons often depending on the type of incontinence you have.
You might leak urine when you:
- Have an urge to urinate, but cant make it to the toilet on time.
- Have to get up in the middle of night to urinate .
What You Can Do
Physical exercise, a Mediterranean diet, blood pressure management, and maintenance of a healthy weight are all strategies that can reduce the risk of incontinence. Those habits can reduce the risk of obesity, stroke, diabetes, and reduced mobility, all of which increase the risk for urinary incontinence.
Incontinence and physical activity seem to have a two-way relationship says Dr. Wagg, such that those who are incontinent are less physically active, and those who are less active are at higher risk for incontinence.
Keep asking for help
Many are simply resigned to incontinence being a normal part of aging. Dr. Wagg told me that in Canada for example up to 2/3 of older women think that its normal to wet yourself, when clearly that isnt the case.
More concerning is that doctors often feel that there is little to offer those with urinary complaints or may prescribe a course of antibiotics that do little to alleviate symptoms. The average delay to care-seeking is about three years. And clearly the more bothersome and the more interruption to normal daily activities the incontinence has, the more likely people are to seek care, reports Dr. Wagg, underlining the importance of patients and sometimes family members being persistent in advocating for help.
Think before you drink
Drinking alcohol at night can appear to help with sleep, but its almost certain to worsen nighttime urination patterns.
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What Are Some Of The Different Types Of Urinary Incontinence
The following are some of the different types of urinary incontinence:
Urgency incontinence: This is the inability to hold urine long enough to reach a restroom. It can be associated with having to urinate often and feeling a strong, sudden urge to urinate. It can be a separate condition, but it may also be an indication of other diseases or conditions that would also warrant medical attention.
Stress incontinence: This is the leakage of urine during exercise, coughing, sneezing, laughing, lifting heavy objects or performing other body movements that put pressure on the bladder.
Functional incontinence: This is urine leakage due to a difficulty reaching a restroom in time because of physical conditions, such as arthritis, injury or other disabilities.
Overflow incontinence. Leakage occurs when the quantity of urine produced exceeds the bladders capacity to hold it.
Will I Have Incontinence For My Entire Life
Sometimes incontinence is a short-term issue that will go away once the cause ends. This is often the case when you have a condition like a urinary tract infection . Once treated, frequent urination and leakage problems caused by a UTI typically end. This is also true for some women who experience bladder control issues during pregnancy. For many, the issues end in the weeks after delivery. However, other causes of incontinence are long-term and related to conditions that are managed throughout your life. If you have a chronic condition like diabetes or multiple sclerosis, you may have incontinence for a long period of time. In those cases, its important to talk to your provider about the best ways to manage your incontinence so that it doesnt interfere with your life.
A note from Cleveland Clinic
It can be embarrassing to talk about bathroom habits with your healthcare provider. This embarrassment shouldnt stop you from treating incontinence, though. Often, your healthcare provider can help figure out the cause of your bladder control issue and help make it better. You dont need to deal with it alone. Talk to your healthcare provider about the best ways to treat incontinence so that you can lead a full and active life without worrying about leakage.
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Why Incontinence Pads Help
Lots of men balk at the idea of using pads or disposable undergarments. But not only do they stop leaks, they can protect skin from irritation and block odor. Best of all, they can help you regain confidence. You may be surprised at the number of product options. Unlike the big, bulky “adult diapers” you might imagine, today’s incontinence pads and undergarments are designed to be comfortable and unnoticeable.
Choices In Protective Underwear And Briefs
When it comes to UI, men have many products available for dealing with occasional leaks.
- Drip collectors wick up moisture if you have occasional leaks
- Incontinence shields go inside your usual underwear to protect against light, infrequent leaks
- Absorbent underwear is built with padding in the right places to keep leaks off your skin and clothes. These may or may not be washable, so check the label
- Pull-ups are disposable briefs pulled on and off like typical underwear and work for heavy leaks
- Diapers with tabs are disposable options that stand up to heavy leaks
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Clinical Evaluation Of Men With Urinary Incontinence
History and physical examination
A detailed history and physical examination are key to the management of male patients with urinary incontinence. Medical history is often sufficient to identify the predominant problem, the type of incontinence and the impact of this condition on the physical and psychological wellbeing of an individual. The presence of other lower urinary tract symptoms, such as voiding difficulties and terminal dribbling, can help the differential diagnosis. The amount of leakage, number of pads used and coping strategies the patient may have developed will all help to determine how bothersome the leakage is for the patient. Additionally, a detailed surgical and drug history should be noted. Patients should also be asked about the presence of any concomitant faecal incontinence.
A focused physical examination is the next step, with examination of the abdomen, pelvis and external genitalia followed by a digital rectal examination and palpation of the bladder after voiding to rule out any residual urine. Demonstration of stress urinary incontinence can also be performed by asking the patient to cough or strain. A brief neurological examination is also necessary to rule out any underlying problems of the nervous system.
Treatment For Urinary Incontinence
Today, there are more treatments for urinary incontinence than ever before. The choice of treatment depends on the type of bladder control problem you have, how serious it is, and what best fits your lifestyle. As a general rule, the simplest and safest treatments should be tried first.
Bladder control training may help you get better control of your bladder. Your doctor may suggest you try the following:
- Pelvic muscle exercises work the muscles that you use to stop urinating. Making these muscles stronger helps you hold urine in your bladder longer. Learn more about pelvic floor exercises and how to do them.
- Biofeedback uses sensors to make you aware of signals from your body. This may help you regain control over the muscles in your bladder and urethra. Biofeedback can be helpful when learning pelvic muscle exercises.
- Timed voiding may help you control your bladder. In timed voiding, you urinate on a set schedule, for example, every hour. You can slowly extend the time between bathroom trips. When timed voiding is combined with biofeedback and pelvic muscle exercises, you may find it easier to control urge and overflow incontinence.
- Lifestyle changes may help with incontinence. Losing weight, quitting smoking, saying no to alcohol, drinking less caffeine , preventing constipation and avoiding lifting heavy objects may help with incontinence. Choosing water instead of other drinks and limiting drinks before bedtime may also help.
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Urinary Incontinence In Men Facts
*Urinary incontinence in men facts medically edited by Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD
- The definition of urinary incontinence in men is the unintentional loss of urine. Weak or damaged bladder muscles, overactive bladder muscles, certain prostate conditions, and nerve damage are just some of the possible underlying causes of urinary incontinence in men.
- There are different types of urinary incontinence in men, including stress incontinence, urge incontinence, and overflow incontinence. Some men may have one, two, or all three types of incontinence.
- Diagnosis of urinary incontinence in men will involve a medical history and physical exam, and may include keeping a bladder diary. It may also include an ultrasound and urodynamic testing.
- Treatment of urinary incontinence in men may include behavioral treatments, like bladder training and Kegel exercises, medication, surgery, or a combination of these therapies.
- Research is ongoing to discover new and better treatments for urinary incontinence in men.
For the urinary system to do its job, muscles and nerves must work together to hold urine in the bladder and then release it at the right time.
Any disease, condition, or injury that damages nerves can lead to urination problems. Nerve problems can occur at any age.
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Medical Devices: Treatment For Urinary Incontinence In Elderly Females
In addition to medicinal treatments, these medical devices may be prescribed for women:
This is a tampon-like insert that a woman places in her urethra, usually during activities related to her incontinence episodes, such as exercising. While wearing the insert, youll be able to urinate and have bowel movements. Its a good option for senior women who want to remain active. It can be worn safely for up to eight hours, but just like a tampon, it will need to be changed as directed to avoid health and hygiene issues.
This is an intravaginal device, similar to a diaphragm, that supports the bladder. It comes in different sizes. After its placed, it will need to be taken out, inspected, and cleaned by a health care provider every three months. You can purchase a single-use disposable pessary over the counter, but its best to check with your doctor or nurse practitioner to determine which option is best for you.
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How Is Urinary Incontinence Diagnosed
Talk with your health care team if you have a problem controlling your bladder. They will work with you to figure out the reason. They may recommend you writing down some details about your urination, including when you urinate, how often you urinate, and how much liquid is released. This is called a voiding diary. Your health care provider may also give you the following tests:
Tests on a sample of your urine to look for an infection or other problems.
A test where you cough as hard as you can when your bladder is full.
Tests to measure pressure in your bladder.
Tests to measure how well your urine is flowing.
An ultrasound. This uses sound waves to create a picture of your bladder and the other body parts that control urine.
A cystoscopy. This test uses a small, lighted tube to look inside your bladder.
An X-ray of your bladder.
Indian Home Remedy For Urinary Incontinence
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How To Train Your Bladder
Try using behavioral techniques such as bladder training. Start by going to the bathroom to pee every half hour, whether you feel the urge or not. As you get into the rhythm, gradually — over days or weeks — expand the time between bathroom breaks. Eventually, you may be able to space breaks by 3 to 4 hours and the urges in between may decrease.
Treatment For Urinary Incontinence In Men
Urinary incontinence treatment in Dubai depends on the form, severity, and root cause of incontinence. By changing a couple of routines and doing workouts to improve the muscles that keep urine in the bladder, many men recover their urinary function. The patient will be recommended to take some drugs if certain behavioral therapies fail.
Surgery is the only suitable alternative in some situations. Your urology specialist will let you know all the possible treatment options that include:
- Bladder training- This helps to avoid urination after the patient experiences the need to urinate. The goal of this treatment is to extend the time lapse between your urge to urinate.
- Double voiding- This involves urinating followed by standing, and then trying it again for a few minutes. To prevent leakage incontinence, this is expected to make the patient aware of how to drain their bladder fully.
- Scheduled bathroom visits- This involves urinating every two or four hours daily rather than waiting for the need to go.
- Pelvic floor muscle workouts- This aim to strengthen the muscles that help regulate urination. These techniques, known as Kegel exercises, help strengthen weak pelvic muscles and enhance control of the bladder
Certain surgical interventions can cure the complications inducing urinary incontinence if other therapies fail to manage symptoms.
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Bladder And Bowel Incontinence
Incontinence is a loss of control of a person’s bowels or bladder which can cause accidental leakage of body fluids and waste. Incontinence can be more than a physical problem. It can disrupt your quality of life if its not managed well.
Fear, anxiety, and anger are common feelings for people dealing with incontinence. You may avoid being intimate or having sex because you are afraid of urine, gas, or stool leakage. Fear of having an accident may keep you from being physically active, enjoying hobbies, or spending extended time outside your home.
Both men and women can have incontinence during and after surgery or some other treatments for cancer. Incontinence can also occur because of other non-cancer medical conditions. Be sure to talk to your health care team if you have difficulty controlling urination or bowels. Talking about incontinence can be embarrassing, but being open and honest with your health care team can help manage it.
What Are The Symptoms Of Urinary Incontinence
The following are common symptoms of urinary incontinence. However, each individual may experience symptoms differently. Symptoms may include:
Needing to rush to the restroom and/or losing urine if you do not get to the restroom in time
Urine leakage with movements or exercise
Leakage of urine that prevents activities
Urine leakage with coughing, sneezing or laughing
Leakage of urine that began or continued after surgery
Leakage of urine that causes embarrassment
Constant feeling of wetness without sensation of urine leakage
Feeling of incomplete bladder emptying
The symptoms of urinary incontinence may resemble other conditions or medical problems. Always consult your doctor for a diagnosis.
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Are There Other Ways To Treat Incontinence
Yes. Medicines or medical devices can treat some types of urinary incontinence. For example, estrogen cream to put in the vagina can be helpful for some women who have mild stress incontinence. Several prescription medicines are available to treat urge incontinence. For men, prescription medicine is available to shrink the prostate and improve flow of urine through the prostate. Talk to your doctor about possible medicine options for your type of incontinence.
In some cases, surgery may be an option. Treatment depends on what type of urinary incontinence you have and what is causing it.