Urinary incontinence, is one of the common problems in the society. In particular, the problem of urinary incontinence in women, which affects approximately 40% of women over the age of 30, can bring a feeling of embarrassment. For this reason, most women who experience this problem are trying to cope with this problem with various methods such as carrying spare underwear, using absorbent pads, or reducing fluid consumption when going outside.
The feeling of embarrassment associated with urinary incontinence in both men and women can result in a serious limitation in quality of life. Because people with this problem start to plan all their daily lives and social activities in the urinary incontinence center.
Naturally, it does not take long for urinary incontinence to be accompanied by problems related to sexual life, lack of self-confidence, depression and similar psychological problems.
However, urinary incontinence in women is a treatable disease. Medical technology has advanced considerably now and with the selection of the most appropriate treatment protocol for the patient's condition, treatment can be started in a short time. Patients can get rid of all these troubles with a comfortable treatment process. It would be a much more rational choice to prefer treatment instead of succumbing to the feeling of embarrassment and lowering the quality of life.
What are the Types of Urinary Incontinence?
Stress incontinence is the type of urinary incontinence usually experienced after childbirth and menopause. In cases where intra-abdominal pressure increases, women can experience urinary incontinence due to the weakness of the ducts opening out of the bladder. Urinary incontinence occurs in situations such as sneezing, coughing, laughing, standing up suddenly and lifting heavy loads.
In this type of urinary incontinence, the person needs to urinate suddenly, but urinates before reaching the toilet. The reason is that there are sudden involuntary contractions in the bladder. Patients with this problem often feel the need to go to the toilet not only during the day, but also at night. Urinary incontinence problem, which is caused by various ailments such as Parkinson's, Alzheimer's, urinary tract infection, commonly occurs as urge type incontinence.
Sometimes, urinary incontinence in women can be both stress and urge type. This situation is considered as mixed incontinence.
The reason for overflow type urinary incontinence is the inability to perceive the bladder sensations. Since the signals that cause the sensation of urination do not reach the brain, urinary incontinence occurs when the capacity of the bladder is filled. In the case of urinary incontinence, we can frequently encounter overflow type incontinence in women who occur due to diseases that cause damage to the nerves such as diabetes, some bladder injuries and spinal cord injury.
How Do Kidneys and Bladder Work?
The working order of the kidneys and bladder is very closely related to urinary incontinence in women. The bladder, also known as the urinary bladder colloquially, is the body area where the urine from the kidneys accumulates.
The urine produced by the kidneys reaches the bladder through the tubes called the ureter. The muscles in the bladder area are controlled by the brain and nerves in this body area. Thus, relaxation and contraction movements occur in the bladder muscles. As urine flows, the bladder bladder begins to stretch, and despite this stretching, the muscles in the lower part of the bladder keep the bladder mouth closed.
When the bladder reaches a certain fullness, a message goes to the brain with the help of nerves and the person feels urge to urinate. Thus, the urine accumulated in the bladder is discharged from the body with the control of the person through a tube called the urethra. However, when women have urinary incontinence problems, urine can be excreted involuntarily. In order for the urine to be stored and discharged in a healthy way, the pelvic muscles, together with the brain and bladder, must be working in a healthy and coordinated manner.
Causes Urinary Incontinence in Women?
Urinary incontinence in women, which can occur due to many different reasons, may be caused by weakening or tearing of the pelvic muscles during delivery. The sagging of the vagina and pelvis due to difficult birth is also among the reasons. Stones in the urinary tract or kidneys, chronic constipation, chronic cystitis and obesity can also cause urinary incontinence problems. However, we can state that vaginal infections and menopause can also cause this problem.
Dementia, alzheimer's disease, diabetes, some brain tumors, Parkinson's disease, some nervous system diseases and spinal cord injuries are also on the list of causes of urinary incontinence. Urinary incontinence problems can arise in women even due to the use of some drugs.
Examples of this include some muscle relaxants, depression medications, diuretics, blood pressure lowering medications, allergy medications, and sedatives. The reason why this problem is common in the society is that urinary incontinence may occur due to many different factors.
Urinary Incontinence Treatment in Women
As we have mentioned before, urinary incontinence in women can occur for different reasons and therefore the cause of this problem seen in the patient should be determined before treatment. Diagnosis is made by gynecologists and obstetricians with various examinations and examinations such as listening to the patient's history and complaints, urine analysis, bladder diary, pelvic ultrasonography, stress test, postvoid residual measurement. Some specific tests may be requested by the doctor before diagnosis. It may also be necessary to perform diagnostic procedures such as cystoscopy and cystogram.
After determining the type of urinary incontinence and the severity level, the appropriate treatment protocol is decided. It should be noted that the treatment in this condition is specially selected for the patient. In the treatment, physical and behavioral therapies can be preferred, as well as surgical intervention decision by the doctor. However, combined treatments may also be required.
If urinary incontinence is not severe, successful results can be obtained with bladder exercises, toilet exercises or pelvic floor muscle exercises. Depending on the patient's condition, drug therapy or electrical stimulation method can also be chosen. Synthetic material injections are one of the treatments with a success rate of 60%. Although botox application to the muscular base of the bladder and the use of a nerve stimulant device are among the treatment methods, today it is preferred in very rare cases.
When Is Urinary Incontinence a Real Problem?
Unfortunately, urinary incontinence in women can be evaluated as a part of life or a condition brought about by the advancement of age. However, if the daily activities, social life and sexual life of the person are negatively affected by this situation and ultimately the quality of life decreases, it is already time to consider urinary incontinence as a real problem.
Sometimes, urinary incontinence can be accompanied by situations such as blood in the urine or burning while urinating, and difficulty. Therefore, urinary incontinence in women is one of the situations that should be applied to a health institution without wasting time and it should be evaluated in this way among the public.
Complaints about this distress should be easily explained to the gynecologist and obstetrician without feeling embarrassed or bored. You should remember that all doctors treat urinary incontinence as a medical condition, not as a shame, and only treat it from a medical perspective.