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Ending Urinary Incontinence

Ending Urinary Incontinence

How to stop incontinence? How can I stop urinary incontinence? 

A: There are a couple of ways that one could go about trying to stop incontinence, however there is no guarantee that any given treatment will totally cure you. Depending on your type, severity and cause of incontinence your treatment and likelihood of stopping symptoms will change.  The most common options for stopping incontinence all together are either behavioral changes, such as changes in diet and weight, or surgeries to fix anatomical issues with the bladder. Your healthcare provider will be able to best advise you on the options available to treat and/or manage your type of incontinence. Your primary care physician may also refer you to a urologist or urogynecologist for consultation about treatment or potential cures. 

Q: How to fix incontinence? Can incontinence be reversed?

A: As mentioned above, it is possible to fix or reverse incontinence. Temporary urinary incontinence is the type of incontinence most likely to be able to be reversed. Temporary UI can be caused by factors like consuming certain foods and drinks (alcohol, caffeine, carbonated drinks, spicy foods, acidic foods, sweeteners), UTIs or constipation. Cutting out these foods, curing your infection or constipation will likely “fix” incontinence symptoms as well. Other potential fixes that are applicable for all types of incontinence include behavioral changes, such as bladder training or diet management, surgeries, such as bladder sling or bladder neck surgery, medications, such as anticholinergics and estrogen, or therapies, such as botox or bulking material injections. The right ‘fix’ for you, again, will depend on your specific type of incontinence, the cause, and your body. Talking to your doctor can also help you figure out if your incontinence can be reversed and the best strategy for doing so. 

Q: How to get rid of stress incontinence?

A: There are a variety of different options for getting rid of stress incontinence. There is no guarantee any given strategy will totally cure all stress incontinence, seeing as symptoms and severity vary from person to person. Pelvic floor exercises are one of the least invasive means of getting rid of, or alleviating, symptoms of stress incontinence. Strengthening the pelvic floor muscles can give you the ability to squeeze these muscles when you feel a sneeze, laugh, cough or other stressor coming on and possibly prevent leakage when the ‘stressor’ arrives. Other options for ‘getting rid of’ stress incontinence include more invasive procedures like Bladder Neck Surgery. Bladder Neck Surgery will put the urethra back in its correct position and keep the bladder from leaking. Another more invasive option is Bulking Material injections which bulk up the urethra and keep it closed during physical activity. Pessary are also an option for stress incontinence, they are silicon rings which are inserted into the vagina to support the urethra and prevent leakage. 

Q: How to stop incontinence naturally?

A: There are a variety of natural behavioral actions and exercises to stop incontinence naturally. Behaviors that can stop incontinence naturally include bladder training, double voiding, scheduling trips, as well as diet management. Cutting out or cutting back on alcohol, caffeine, carbonated drinks, spicy foods, acidic foods and sugar can all decrease bladder irritation and help stop incontinence naturally. Reducing liquid consumption and weight loss are also good natural options. Additionally, pelvic floor strengthening exercises like kegels can help alleviate incontinence symptoms naturally.

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