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Five Types of Urinary Incontinence in Women

Five Types of Urinary Incontinence in Women

You sneeze or laugh too hard and you feel urine escape, or perhaps you’re having trouble with frequent and sudden urges to urinate, forcing you to stay near a bathroom at all times. These are just a few of the challenges that come with urinary incontinence, which affects twice as many women as men.

If you’re struggling with confidence-robbing urinary issues, Dr. Fernando Otero and the team here at Women’s Clinic of the Rio Grande offer urinary incontinence services. The first step in finding a solution for your problem is figuring out which type of urinary incontinence you’re dealing with, which is why we decided to pull together the following information.

1. Stress incontinence

Of the different types of incontinence, stress incontinence in women is the most prevalent. It affects one out of every three American women over the age of 45, and this number jumps to 50% in women over 65.

Stress incontinence refers to pressure on your bladder that leads to leakage, such as when you cough, sneeze, or jump.

In some cases, this type of incontinence is situational. Many pregnant women experience stress urinary incontinence as the womb places added pressure on the bladder. This problem can continue after your pregnancy, as the support tissues surrounding your urinary tract have weakened.

Aging also plays a considerable role and leads to the same loss of support that you might have experienced after pregnancy, namely in your urethral sphincter and your pelvic floor muscles.

2. Urge incontinence, aka overactive bladder (OAB)

This type of incontinence occurs when the muscles in your bladder contract, creating an urge to urinate. This can happen when your bladder isn’t full, and it can occur frequently, leaving you racing for the bathroom with very little time.

In the US, one in five adults has problems with OAB, with women outpacing men by two to one. In fact, nearly 37% of women between the ages of 20 and 45 report problems with OAB, and this number only increases with age.

3. Mixed incontinence

If you have both stress and urge incontinence, we call it mixed incontinence. Here again, this problem crops up in women far more than it does in men, which has a lot to do with sex hormones and pregnancy.

4. Overflow incontinence

If you produce more urine than your bladder can contain, it can lead to overflow incontinence. Another problem with this type of incontinence is that you’re unable to fully void your bladder when you urinate.

5. Functional incontinence

This last type of incontinence occurs when you’re functionally incapable of reaching a bathroom in time.

Treating incontinence

If you’re having problems with incontinence, your first step is to come see us so that we can identify the type. Once we understand what’s behind your urinary leakage, we can help you regain control over bladder and urinary tract through:

Lifestyle changes, such as cutting out caffeine and alcohol, can also go a long way toward controlling your bladder.

If you’d like to learn more about urinary incontinence and how we can remedy the problem and restore your quality of life, please contact one of our offices in McAllen or Edinburg, Texas, to set up a consultation.

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