Diagnosis and Treatment of Urinary Incontinence

Diagnosis of a urinary incontinence problem may be as simple as a urine test to see if there are signs of an infection or traces of blood in the urine and other conditions causing the problem.

You’ll likely need to provide your doctor with a complete medical history and brief physical exam. One test that a medical professional may try is to have you close your mouth while pinching your nose and exhaling.

After an initial exam your doctor may recommend that you keep a diary of your bladder happenings to record the amount you drink. You’ll also need to record how many times you go, how much urine there is and if you had to go really badly - along with how many times you were incontinent.

A doctor can use a test (ultrasound) or catheter to see if there are more serious problems, such as a damaged or blocked nerve in your urinary tract or any problems with the muscles. It involves you going into a container so the amount of urine can be measured.

Another test the doctor may order is a cystoscopy where a finite tube with a lens is injected into your urethra so he can see if there is anything wrong inside the urinary tract. A pelvic ultrasound may be ordered to check for other abnormalities of the genitals and urinary tract.

Urodynamic testing can be done to measure the strength of your bladder and the health of your urinary sphincter muscles. The doctor puts a catheter into your urethra and fills your bladder up with water to record the amount of pressure on the bladder itself.

A cystogram may be ordered to help your doctor track problems in your urinary tract. They put a catheter inside of your urethra and bladder where a special type of dye is inserted. While you urinate, X-rays are taken to better follow the urine’s progress as it leaves your body.

The type of urinary continence and severity you’re experiencing and the diagnosis of a cause will determine the treatment involved. You may receive several treatments, beginning with the least invasive and then discuss other options if those methods fail.

The least invasive of treatments includes training the bladder so urination is delayed even after you get the urge to go to the bathroom. You may try to hold the urine for 10 minutes at first and then lengthen the time as your bladder becomes more trained. A good goal is to increase the time between toilet trips to between two to four hours.

Food and drink management is another way to get back control of your bladder. Cutting down on beverages such as alcohol or those which contain caffeine and avoiding acidic foods is one method to reduce overactive bladder.

Losing weight, increasing physical exercise and reducing your consumption of liquids is another method that sometimes works to calm a nervous bladder. Also, try scheduling your trips to the toilet – like urinating every two or four hours rather than going every time you feel the urge.

Overflow incontinence may be helped by double voiding. This means you empty your bladder more completely by waiting a few moments after urinating and then attempting to urinate again.

You may have heard of Kegel exercises that are meant to strengthen muscles involved in the urination process. These specialized exercises involve the series of muscles located in and around the pubic bone, including the anus, vagina, rectum and urethra.

These exercises can help men or women restore muscle function to reduce the symptoms of incontinence. You can find Kegel exercise instructions online or seek help from a therapist or health care provider.

Natural therapies that can help urinary incontinence include the dietary changes such as tobacco, alcohol, pepper and spicy foods and caffeine which can irritate the bladder. And, avoid excess pounds which may put unnecessary stress on the bladder.

Biofeedback has been known to help those with incontinence by helping you to identify the pelvic muscles and strengthen them. You’ll use signals from your own body to control incontinence.

Keep a bladder diary to help you identify the triggers which may help you pinpoint the problems. And, avoid the feminine deodorant products. Some of these contain chemicals and additives that can aggravate the urethra.

Learn more about your health online when you read the rest of our information here about: Incontinence- free online health guide and also download the free health report available there!

Warren Tattersall has been a full time nutritional consultant for over a decade and works with people all over the world to help them improve their health, increase their personal energy levels and to use supplements to assist with diet related health issues.

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