Urinary incontinence is an embarrassing condition where you unintentionally lose urine, leaking unexpectedly at the most inopportune times. It occurs more often in women, and while there are different types of urinary incontinence, as well as different causes, pregnancy, childbirth, and menopause are potential contributing factors. Too many people ignore the issue because of humiliation, but it’s actually very common and can be treated, as long as you’re open to discussing it with your doctor. Remember, you’re not alone.
Dr. Donald Jones and the Ozark OB/GYN staff in Poplar Bluff, Missouri believe it’s an honor to have your trust when dealing with this embarrassing problem. He’ll perform a full physical exam and discuss your past medical history in order to discover the specific cause of your urinary incontinence. Then Dr. Jones will suggest a full variety of treatments that best suit your individual, specific needs. Urinary incontinence doesn’t have to rule your life.
Types of female urinary incontinence
There are different types of urinary incontinence, and Dr. Jones may use several tests in order to determine which type you have. This can include the physical exam, ultrasound, a stress test for the bladder, and testing your urinary tract to see how everything is functioning. He may also recommend a urinalysis or even a cystoscopy, where a camera examines the bladder and urethra. The types of female urinary incontinence are:
- Stress incontinence: When laughing, sneezing or coughing puts stress on the bladder, and stressed or weak muscles cannot stop the flow of urine
- Urge incontinence and overactive bladder: When the muscle contracts involuntarily and the bladder empties itself
- Overflow incontinence: When your body produces too much urine and/or the bladder does not properly empty
- Transient incontinence: A temporary condition that can be caused by medications you’re on, a UTI (urinary tract infection), or other issues
- Mixed incontinence: The most common form of incontinence, a combination of several types that usually includes overactive bladder and stress incontinence
Treatments for female urinary incontinence
First off, just know that this is very common and you’re not the only one suffering from the issue. Second, this condition can be effectively dealt with. When you come in to see us, we’ll do a full analysis and determine the best and most productive course of action. Treatment options include:
- Behavioral therapy like bladder training, and Kegels (exercises that help build up your pelvic floor muscles)
- Surgical procedures like bladder suspension, which use sutures to support the urethra and bladder neck
- Tension-free vaginal taping (TVT), which involves putting polypropylene tape under the urethra to close it
- Medications are possible in some situations
- Medical devices like a pessary, a ring that’s placed into the vagina can also support a fallen bladder
Please don’t be ashamed of your condition, as it’s more common than you think. It’s our mission at Ozark OB/GYN to help you with the most sensitive and personalized care. Get in touch with us and set an appointment by calling the office today.