Frequently asked questions about urinary incontinence

Urinary incontinence is an embarrassing ailment. We very rarely admit it, even to a doctor. Many people think that involuntary urination will pass by itself, it is a shameful topic, unfortunately most often with time the symptoms get worse instead of disappearing. Instead of waiting with your arms folded, it is better to start treatment so that you can function normally again.

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1. What is the cause of urinary incontinence?

Most people believe that urinary incontinence is a condition that only affects the elderly. This is not true - anyone, regardless of age or gender, can get this disease. Leaving urine is a symptom of dysfunction of the bladder, sphincter and urethra. There can be many causes of this disorder. The most common are inflammation, injuries, operations, obesity, hormonal disorders, childbirth, and hard physical work.

Urinary incontinence is a bladder disorder (123RF)

2. What is the examination?

If urinary incontinence is suspected, a urologist should be consulted, who should first conduct a detailed interview, and then order a series of diagnostic tests. The most frequently ordered tests in this case include: ultrasound of the abdominal cavity, urinalysis with culture, urodynamic examination. These tests are designed to check the condition of the urinary system and to rule out infections. It is very important to be honest when talking to your doctor and not hide anything about your illness.

3. Are all types of urinary incontinence treated the same?

There are many causes of urinary incontinence, each requiring a different treatment. Treatment may include simple pelvic floor exercises, electrostimulation, drug therapy, or surgery. The selection of the appropriate form of treatment must be adjusted individually. Regardless of the type of urinary incontinence, the sooner treatment is started, the milder it is and the greater the chance of success.

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4. Does diet influence the severity of symptoms?

What we eat has a huge impact on the behavior of our urinary system. Diet can both aggravate the symptoms of urinary incontinence and alleviate them. Foods to avoid in this condition include alcohol, coffee, carbonated drinks, milk, tomatoes, citrus, hot spices, and chocolate. Foods that a sick person should include in their diet are vegetables and fruits, because they contain a large amount of fiber. It should also be remembered that excess weight is the factor causing urinary incontinence, therefore high-calorie foods should be avoided. It is also worth knowing that cigarette smoke is a factor that irritates the bladder walls and damages the sphincter nerves.

5. Should you limit your fluid intake when you are passing urine involuntarily?

While it might seem that reducing the amount of fluids you drink can reduce urine leakage, it is not a good solution. Refraining from drinking water will not reduce the amount of urine you leave, but it will affect its concentration. Denser urine is a strong irritant, which can cause many serious diseases of the urinary system. Consuming small amounts of water can also result in urine retention, which is one of the leading causes of bladder inflammation.

6. Can untreated urine leakage cause other diseases?

When we avoid visiting a doctor because of embarrassment, hoping for a spontaneous solution to the problem, we lose the chances of a quick recovery. The longer it delays, the more difficult and long the therapy becomes. Moreover, the symptoms of the disease worsen and become more and more bothersome. At some point, they can become a cause of isolation, job loss and depression. Treatment of urinary incontinence is not much different from treatment of other conditions, so there is no reason to avoid it.

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