Urinary incontinence is the loss of bladder control. The two most common types of urinary incontinence are stress incontinence and urge incontinence, also called overactive bladder. Incontinence affects twice as many women as men. This may be because pregnancy, childbirth, and menopause may make urinary incontinence more likely. Urinary incontinence is not normal and it can be treated.
Urinary incontinence is not a disease by itself.
Urinary incontinence is a symptom of another health problem, usually weak pelvic floor muscles. In addition to urinary incontinence, some women have other urinary symptoms: •Pressure or spasms in the pelvic area that causes a strong urge to urinate •Going to the bathroom more than usual (more than eight times a day or more than twice at night) •Urinating while sleeping (bedwetting)
Prevention and rehabilitation
One of the main causes of incontinence in both men and women is weak pelvic floor muscles. If your incontinence is due to a weak pelvic floor, always try physiotherapy first to strengthen these muscles before considering an operation. Physiotherapy can help with both bladder and bowel incontinence.
Research has shown that pelvic floor muscle training is cheaper and more effective than one of the main incontinence drugs. Other research compared non-surgical treatments. This found that intensive pelvic floor muscle training, plus lifestyle changes, was the most effective method for treating urinary and bowel incontinence.