7 Myths about Bladder Incontinence You need to Know About

Bladder Incontinence affects both men and women of various ages. It is a common health condition but is often brushed off because of the various perceptions about it. Here in this article you will learn the views people have on the subject of Bladder Incontinence. Find out if what you know about this condition is true.

Myth # 1: "There is nothing that can be done to cure or treat bladder incontinence"

Fact # 1: Bladder Incontinence is treatable - Although common, incontinence should not be thought as a normal process which occurs in anyone's lifetime. Most people suffering from Overactive Bladder thinks that it is okay to experience leaking urine and even the use of diapers since this comes with age or is a result of an untreatable condition. As a matter of fact, Incontinence can be treated and managed in numerous ways. The most common way to treat this condition is through the use of certain medications which can help increase the muscle strength of your bladder. Anti-cholinergic, Anti-Spasmodic, and Muscaric drugs can be prescribed by your doctor to prevent urine leakage. These drugs help the sphincter muscle of your bladder to squeeze in urine, avoid it to pass through the urethra unless your bladder is already full (300-500ml). Other method of treating bladder incontinence is through special exercises like kegel's, pelvic rocking, vaginal weight training, and squatting. In addition, the most important management for incontinence is bladder retraining. This is the type of management where you need to condition your mind and your bladder when and when not to void. It is difficult but it is the most rewarding since this form of management will help you regain control of your bladder. However, there are situations when the condition is worst than expected. For some, the abovementioned treatment and management just doesn't work therefore requires other forms of treatment like biofeedback, electrical stimulation and even surgery.

Myth # 2: "Bladder Incontinence comes with Aging"

Fact # 2: Aging does not cause Incontinence - Although common to most people ages 50 and above; it is not a normal part of aging. You can still age gracefully without having to live with incontinence. Age may play a factor because of physiological changes and disadvantages but it is never right to reason age as the cause of incontinence. The real causes of such condition are:

- Urinary tract infection

- Loss of muscle control due to childbirth, insertion of catheter and some sexual practices

- Neurologic conditions like depression, multiple sclerosis, paralysis, and cerebral palsy

- Diseases like diabetes mellitus, kidney problems, parkinsons, stroke, kidney stones, cancer and tumors

Myth # 3: "Very few people suffer from Bladder Incontinence"

Fact # 3: 1 out of 5 individuals suffer from Urinary Incontinence and/or 1 in 3 pregnant women have urinary bladder incontinence. This is a condition that is not commonly experienced by people of all ages. At least 1/3 of the female population have had some form of incontinence while there are less than that among men worldwide. According to research, women suffer more because of their shorter urethra than men. And those who tend to have incontinence are usually from rural areas.

Myth # 4: "Over Active Bladder is not a serious Condition"

Fact # 4: Urinary Bladder Incontinence is a serious medical condition - the fact that incontinence is caused by numerous types of associated conditions and has many complications; it is considered to be a serious medical condition. Incontinence alone poses a serious threat to health and should not be taken for granted.

Complications of Bladder Incontinence:

- Skin Ulceration

- Skin Rashes

- Falls and Fractures

- Emotional and Psychological Distress

- Sleep Disturbances

- Dehydration

Myth # 5: "Over Active Bladder Goes Away on its own"

Fact # 5: OAB needs urgent treatment - even if incontinence is caused by a mild case of infection; it doesn't go away by itself without medical intervention. If you are suffering from Over active bladder you should not that you need at least one or two means to manage the condition. Settling for the false idea that it will go away eventually will put you into more risk of developing complications and even lead you to a more serious medical condition. The best way for you to do is to make sure that you seek professional help once you notice changes in your bladder control.

Myth # 6: "Bladder Incontinence is a result of drinking too much water and holding-in urine for too long”

Fact # 6: Incontinence is not the result of drinking too much water or even holding in urine for long periods of time. Drinking lots of fluid is actually advised to people suffering from incontinence to help reduce the odor of urine. This is also necessary to help train the bladder to urinate only when it is already full. On the other hand, holding in urine for long periods of time may somewhat be related to the development of OAB especially when this becomes a habit. It is important that when you feel the urge to urinate you should do it because stones can build up over time. And the pressure exerted by the urine on your bladder is not also good; it can result to loss of muscle control and eventually to incontinence.

Myth # 7: "There's only one type of Incontinence"

Fact # 7: There are actually 8 types of bladder incontinence and these are:

- Urge Incontinence - Involuntary muscle contraction of the bladder and results to passing of urine even without you noticing it.

- Stress incontinence - Passing of urine when sneezing, laughing, coughing, lifting heavy objects or doing simple tasks.

- Overactive Bladder - most commonly known as mixed incontinence and is the usual type in women.

- Overflow Incontinence - the involuntary flow of urine when the bladder is already full

- Total Incontinence - Total loss of muscle control

- Functional Incontinence - has little control but because of diseases you always seem to ran out of time to reach the bathroom to urinate

- Anatomical Incontinence - this is the involuntary passing of urine through the urethra because of diminished muscle control even when the bladder is not full.

- Neurogenic Incontinence - incontinence caused by damage in neurological functions like stroke, multiple sclerosis, parkinson's and cerebral palsy.

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Phil Plasma profile image

Phil Plasma 5 years ago from Montreal, Quebec

I didn't realize there was so much to know about incontinence, or that it was so prevalent. Excellent, well written hub earning you a vote up.

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