Where do my sudden urinary urges come from?
Urge incontinence is when one feels the sudden need to urinate that cannot be controlled. This condition is not a disease but can be a sign that there is a problem internally in the body.
Sometimes, incontinence is known as overactive bladder. In cases of an overactive bladder, people feel the urge to urinate but may not necessarily leak.
Causes of Urge Incontinence
Abnormal bladder contraction is the leading cause of urge incontinence. Normal strong muscles (sphincters) manage the passing of urine from the bladder out of the body. In they the muscles of an overactive bladder contract and override the strong muscles of the tube (urethra) that carries the urine out of the body.
The reasons for abnormal contractions of the bladder are listed below:
- The spinal cord can be damaged
- The bladder can be irritated
- The bladder may not be functioning as it should because of the damaged nerves due to diseases like stroke, diabetes, multiple sclerosis, and Parkinson’s disease.
Remember that incontinence is not a disease but a symptom of other issues or a physical problem.
In some cases when this condition is present, the doctor is not always able to note an exact cause, but it could be:
- Enlarged prostate in men
- Bladder cancer in the opening of the bladder
- Nervous system disorders
Symptoms of Urge Incontinence
Many people consider urge incontinence as an inconvenience and avoid consulting a doctor.
But if the condition affects daily activities, then one should visit a health practitioner to discuss the treatment options.
The main symptom of this condition is the urgent need to urinate or involuntary loss of urine at any time of the day. For example, one may experience leakage of urine in public or while sleeping.
Other symptoms are, pain in the pelvic region and pain or burning sensation while urinating. If these symptoms continue for several days, visit a doctor immediately.
Treatments of this condition vary from person to person, depending on the severity, symptoms, and causes. Every person may be prescribed a different treatment, such as behavioral treatment or invasive treatments, and your doctor will determine what best recommend is.
Visit a doctor immediately if experiencing severe incontinence. The symptoms could be signaling to some serious condition like:
- Bladder infection
- Kidney stone
Risk Factors Associated with Overactive Incontinence
Some people are at a higher risk of incontinence, including:
- Older adults.
- Overweight people.
- Women who have undergone pelvic surgery or C-section
- Men who have undergone prostate surgery or facing prostate conditions like prostatitis or an enlarged prostate
- Adults who experience constipation often
- Those suffering from urinary tract infection
- Those having bladder or prostate cancer
- Adults who have nerve damage like stroke, injury, and diabetes
Treatment Options for Incontinence
Many people with incontinence live a normal life, but it affects their day to day activities. It can be treated with various treatments like healthy lifestyle changes, medication, electric stimulation, or surgery. In some cases, a doctor may prescribe a combination of treatments to get relief.
One of the best ways of dealing with incontinence is to make behavioral changes like:
Dietary and Lifestyle Changes
Bladder irritation can be reduced by changing the diet. Ensure to limit the intake of caffeine and alcohol. Also, avoid foods that are acidic, spicy, or high in sugar as it can irritate the bladder.
If overweight, we would suggest weight loss because excess body weight puts more pressure on the bladder muscles. One of the most important lifestyle changes for smokers is to quit smoking.
Also, try to eat more fiber to prevent constipation, which puts unnecessary pressure on the bladder. Do not be reluctant to wear an absorbent pad while doing any daily activities that could increase leaks.
Kegel exercise is the first treatment option that most doctors recommend to overcome incontinence. This exercise strengthens the bladder and pelvic floor muscles.
Contract the pelvic muscles for 10 seconds and then relax for the same time. If unable to do this exercise, hold urine for a few seconds mid steam and then relax. It’s the same thing as a Kegel and would replicate doing the Kegel exercise.
Just by focusing on the pelvic floor muscles and contracting it often will activate the right muscles. Repeat this as many times as possible, at least three times a day. This exercise can be done anytime and anywhere.
If therapy is done under the guidance of a doctor, someone may also use a Kegel cone that is held in the vagina while contracting the pelvic. Heavier weights may be used as muscles get stronger.
Retraining the Bladder
Bladder retraining can strengthen the bladder muscles. One way of doing this is to urinate only at a specific scheduled time every day. Do not visit the bathroom at other times, even if the need arises.
At the beginning of the retraining, visit the bathroom every hour and then increase the wait time by 30 minutes until going 3 hours without any leakage.
Another way to retrain is to delay urination when the need arises. This strengthens the bladder muscles by helping you hold urine.
If behavioral changes do not treat urge incontinence, then medical treatment may be required. A doctor will recommend some medications or therapies that could help get relief.
Remember not to buy any drug over the counter without consulting the doctor. If the medications do not work, then the health practitioner can recommend surgical treatments like:
- Drug Botox injected in the bladder muscles, which allows it to increase the urine storage capacity.
- Hormonal therapy in women.
Electrical Stimulation involves using nerve stimulators, which are small devices like pacemakers. It is inserted in the skin of the buttocks; it sends light pulses to the nerve that helps in controlling bladder functioning.
Urge Incontinence Frequently Asked Questions
Is Urge Incontinence A Sign of Cancer?
Overactive bladder is not a sign of cancer but can be a result of certain cancer. Incontinence is when a person is not able to hold his or her urine and leaks anywhere at any time. It can last for a short or long time, and the severity can also vary.
What Is the Most Common Cause of Urge Incontinence?
Urge Incontinence may be caused by any condition like an infection or a severe condition like diabetes or nerve disorder. Other causes of this condition can be a damaged spinal cord, irritated bladder, an enlarged prostate in men, etc.
How Can You Get Rid of Urinary Incontinence?
For most people, some self-help tips and lifestyle changes are sufficient to get relief, and these include:
- Pelvic floor exercises
- Avoid lifting weights
- Quit smoking
- Increase intake of fibers in the diet
- Cut down caffeine
- Losing weight
- Drinking ample water
What Is the First Sign of Bladder Cancer?
The first sign of bladder cancer can be spotting blood in the urine. It may be considered cancer only when sufficient blood in the urine changes the color of the urine to pink, orange, or even dark red in some cases. Visit the doctor immediately if noticed.
Urinary incontinence should not affect your day-to-day routine or lifestyle. ConfidentMe Health provides a revolutionary treatment for all types of urinary incontinence using BTS Emsella. If you are looking for a solution to your incontinence issues, call us at 1-833-532-5668 or send us an inquiry through our website using Book a Session page.