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Urinary Incontinence

Urinary Incontinence

Urinary incontinence can happen to all of us, especially as we age. But just because it’s common doesn’t mean the symptoms of sudden or unexpected urination are any less unpleasant. Whether your symptoms are caused by aging, childbirth, diabetes or something else, MultiCare Urology has the professional care you need to address the problem.

Types and Symptoms of Urinary Incontinence

There are several different types of urinary incontinence. Three common types include:

  • Stress incontinence happens when weak or damaged pelvic floor muscles allow urine to leak out when you cough, laugh or exert yourself. This often happens after childbirth and during normal aging.
  • Urge incontinence is when you feel a sudden urge to go now, and you may have trouble making it to the bathroom in time. 
  • Overflow incontinence happens when the bladder stays so full, it overflows and dribbles multiple times a day.

Some people experience a mix of different types of incontinence. 

Risk Factors for Urinary Incontinence

Sometimes minor urinary incontinence can happen after a surgery or because of a urinary tract infection. Certain medications can also make incontinence more likely, but more often, it is related to aging or a medical condition. Some causes and risk factors include:

  • Alzheimer’s disease
  • Diabetes
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Prostate issues
  • Stroke
  • Weak pelvic or bladder muscles

Diagnosis of Urinary Incontinence

After a physical exam and intake of your medical history, your provider will likely request blood work and urinalysis to rule out other possible causes of your incontinence. In some cases, you may be asked to do a “cough stress test” or a bladder emptying test to see how well your urinary tract functions. Although it can be awkward to discuss an embarrassing condition like incontinence with your urologist, it’s important to be honest about all your symptoms and their severity to ensure you get the best diagnosis.

Treatment for Urinary Incontinence

In some cases, urinary incontinence can be treated with minor lifestyle changes, like limiting caffeine and alcohol, quitting smoking, losing weight and strengthening your pelvic floor muscles. If lifestyle changes do not help, you may benefit from other surgical and nonsurgical treatments.

At MultiCare Urology, our team can help you find a treatment that works to improve your quality of life.

Contact Us to Schedule an Appointment

For more information or to schedule an appointment, contact one of our convenient South Sound locations or find a provider near you.

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