Factors that contribute to bladder control problems include:
The two types of incontinence most common in women are stress incontinence and urge incontinence. Stress incontinence is the spontaneous, uncontrolled leakage of small amounts of urine with exertion such as coughing, sneezing, straining, lifting or playing sport (in the absence of any desire to go to the toilet).Urge incontinence causes a sudden, overwhelming urge to urinate. If a person is unable to get to the toilet in time, and experiences an involuntary loss of urine they are said to have "urge incontinence".
Many women experience a combination of urge and stress incontinence.
Bladder control problems don't have to hamper your lifestyle. Talk to your doctor for advice or contact the New Zealand Continence Association.
Issues with bladder control can be annoying but there are a few simple measures that can help women with mild to moderate bladder control problems, such as:
See self-care for bladder control problems for more detailed information on pelvic floor exercises and bladder training.
If you experience ongoing problems with urinary incontinence which is not helped by the self-care measures above, your doctor may prescribe you an anticholinergic medication, such as oxybutynin, solifenacin, tolterodine. These act on the bladder muscles to help improve bladder control.
Bladder control problems in women NZ Continence Association, 2015Promoting good bladder and bowel health NZ Continence Association, 2015Urinary problems NZ Ministry of Health