Poor bladder control can range from a few trickles when you sneeze to a complete involuntary release of urine from the bladder. Depending on the cause and severity of your condition, your doctor may prescribe one or a combination of incontinence treatments. Keep in mind that finding the perfect solution can take a while, since your physician will likely begin with the least invasive treatment method, adding more treatment options as needed. So, what kind of incontinence treatments is available? The most common include medication, pelvic floor exercises, medical devices and surgery. Read on to learn more about these important types of incontinence treatment.
Top 4 Incontinence Treatment Options
- Pelvic floor exercises
- Medical devices
If an overactive bladder has you running to the bathroom more than you can handle, or urge incontinence is becoming an embarrassing problem you would like to avoid, medication may be the answer. While pharmaceuticals work well in treating urge incontinence and overactive bladder syndrome, they do not tend to work as well in relieving the symptoms of stress incontinence. Still, your doctor may prescribe medications when trying to relieve your incontinence symptoms. The most common medications for incontinence treatment are termed as either anticholinergic or mirabegron drugs. In some cases, doctors might recommend the antidepressant imipramine. Estrogen therapy may be recommended, and Botox injections can also be helpful.
- Anticholinergic drugs block the chemical messenger acetylcholine from sending signals to your brain to trigger bladder contractions.
- Mirabegron Drugs relax the bladder muscle so it can hold more urine.
- Botox injections can help to paralyze the bladder muscle, thus stopping the contractions which cause overactive bladder and incontinence.
- Using an estrogen cream can help to strengthen muscles surrounding the bladder and relieve incontinence symptoms.
- Imipramine works to relax the bladder while helping the bladder neck to contract properly to treat mixed incontinence.
Pelvic Floor Exercises
Any time the pelvic floor muscles atrophy; they can become too weak to control the flow of urine from the bladder. Strengthening these muscles (even a little bit) can give you better bladder control. Pelvic floor exercise (also known as Kegel’s), are done by holding the muscles as if you were stopping urine from flowing and holding for 2-5 seconds; relaxing those muscles for 5 seconds and repeating the exercise as many times as you can. Try and work up to 3 sets of 10 five second holds, several times per day.
- Kegel exercises are highly popular.
- Reduces the need for medication.
- Can help to improve urine flow and control urges.
Women suffering incontinence are usually treated with either a urethral insert or a Pessary Ring. Both are inserted into the vagina and helps to hold up the bladder and guard against leakage. Mena and women both can sometimes benefit from a nerve stimulator, small pacemaker-type device that is inserted under the skin and ends the sacral nerves in the bladder periodic electrical charges to help them better control urinary output. Urethral inserts and Pessary rings are used only on women, while nerve stimulators are medical devices that can be used on anyone suffering with incontinence.
- Medical devices can be ordered online.
- Devices can help both men and women.
- Helpful for people with moderate to severe incontinence.
In the event other incontinence treatments don’t work, your doctor may urge you or consider a surgical approach to treating your bladder issues. The most common surgical procedures used for incontinence include artificial urinary sphincter surgery, bladder neck suspensions and sling procedures.
- Artificial urinary Sphincter surgery is very effective in men who suffer incontinence due to prostate cancer. By inserting a small ring around the bladder neck, urine can be help in the bladder until the man is ready. When he wants to urinate, he simply presses a valve implanted under the skin that releases the flow.
- Bladder neck Suspension is a surgical procedure that is done through an incision in the abdomen. It works by supporting the urethra and bladder neck.
- Sling Procedures are used mostly for stress incontinence. BY inserting a small mesh-like sling around the urethra, the urethra remains closed during exercise (0r sneezing), thereby eliminating the risk of urine escaping.
Urinary Incontinence is not an uncommon problem for older adults but it is not something you have to learn to live with. There are plenty of new treatment options including medication, pelvic floor exercises, medical devices and surgery that are available for patients who want to get back to living life without the worry of those little – or big – leaks any longer.