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Urinary Incontinence – Causes, Risk factors and Types

Urinary incontinence is a condition in which there is an uncontrollable leakage of urine causing a social or hygienic problem. It is also known as overactive bladder. It can be caused by everyday habits, underlying medical conditions or physical problems.

Causes of Temporary Urinary Incontinence

– Alcohol
– Over-hydration
– Dehydration
– Caffeine
– Bladder Irritation
– Medications
Easily treatable medical conditions also may be responsible for urinary incontinence.
– Urinary tract infection.
– Constipation

Causes of persistent urinary incontinence

Urinary incontinence can also be a persistent condition caused by underlying physical problems or changes, including:
– Pregnancy and childbirth
– Changes with ageing
– Hysterectomy
– Painful bladder syndrome
– Prostatitis
– Enlarged prostate
– Prostate Cancer
– Bladder cancer or bladder stones
– Neurological disorders
– Obstruction

Types of Urinary incontinence in men & women

– Stress incontinence: It does not mean emotional stress. It is the leakage of urine during exercise, coughing, sneezing, laughing, walking, lifting heavy objects such as lifting a bag of groceries, rising from a sitting to a standing position, or other body movements that put pressure on the bladder.
– Overflow Incontinence: It results when the bladder is allowed to become so full that it overflows. Urine stream is weak with a frequent or constant dribble.
– Urge Incontinence: In this type of incontinence, an overactive bladder contracts without you wanting it to do so. You may feel as if you can’t wait to reach a toilet. It is found in people suffering from diseases such as diabetes, stroke, dementia, Parkinson’s disease and multiple sclerosis.
– Total Incontinence: It occurs when there is a complete loss of bladder control, usually occurring after some form of surgery to the lower urinary tract.
– Functional incontinence: It occurs when a disability stops from reaching the toilet in time for urination even though the urinary tract functions normally.

Risk Factors of Urine Incontinence

– Women are more likely to develop stress incontinence easily than men.
– As you get older, the muscles in your bladder and urethra lose some of their strength.
– The pressure on the bladder is increased if you are overweight.
– A chronic cough associated with smoking can cause episodes of incontinence or aggravate incontinence that has other causes.

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