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Is Urinary Incontinence Normal?

If you struggle to hold in urine until you’re able to use the restroom or find yourself leaking urine when laughing or sneezing, you could have urinary incontinence. While urinary incontinence is common, affecting at least 50% of American women and men over age 65, it’s never normal. 

At Urology Associates Medical Group in Burbank, California, our team of experts specializes in diagnosing and treating different forms of urinary incontinence. If you’re one of the 13 million Americans suffering from this condition, read on to learn what you need to know and how we can help.

Isn’t urinary incontinence a normal part of aging?

Urinary incontinence can cause urine to leak and even lead to full loss of control of your bladder. Although you’re more likely to experience urinary incontinence as you age, it’s not a normal symptom of aging.

Urinary incontinence is actually a sign of an underlying issue. We can identify what’s triggering your incontinence by correctly diagnosing which type of urinary incontinence you have. 

What are the types of urinary incontinence?

There are five types of urinary incontinence, including total incontinence, which involves continuous leaking of any urine in your bladder, and mixed incontinence, which is having two or more types of incontinence at the same time. 

Here’s a closer look at the other types of incontinence: 

Stress incontinence

Stress incontinence is the most common type of incontinence and is caused by the weakening of the muscles that support your bladder and urethra. Because your bladder isn’t supported correctly, any pressure or stress is placed on the bladder causes you to leak urine. 

Functional incontinence 

Functional incontinence, also referred to as urgency incontinence or overactive bladder, creates a sudden strong and desperate urge to urinate. Because this urge is so strong, it can cause you to leak urine, even when your bladder isn’t full.  

Functional incontinence isn’t caused by an underlying problem with your bladder but rather misfiring by the muscles that control your bladder. These muscles contract before your bladder is full, sending the signal that you need to urinate. As such, this is a functional issue.

Overflow incontinence

If you can’t empty your bladder completely and dribble urine after visiting the restroom, you may have overflow incontinence. You may feel the need to urinate as the leaking occurs, but many patients with this condition don’t sense anything until their clothes are damp. 

Overflow incontinence can also make it difficult to start urinating, cause you to get up frequently at night, and even increase your risk of getting a urinary tract infection. Men are more likely than women to have this type of urinary incontinence.  

What should I do if I’m struggling with incontinence?

If you believe you have any form of urinary incontinence, share your symptoms with us at Urological Associates Medical Group. We use a collection of different tests to evaluate and identify which type of incontinence you have. 

Once we rule out other possible causes of incontinence and understand what’s causing your condition, they create a customized treatment plan specifically designed to meet your needs. 

Possible treatments include:

If these more conservative methods don’t work, we may recommend correcting your incontinence with surgery. 

Are you ready to discover what’s causing your incontinence and what you can do about it? Call our Burbank, California, office at 818-853-9679 or request an in-person or virtual appointment online now.

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