Many of us delay a trip to the bathroom and just take control of the entire matter. However, you have to consider that the entire scenario might change as you grow older. Bladder leakage becomes an issue that needs attention. Urinary incontinence in seniors is one challenging topic that you must be familiar with. Learning the types, causes, and treatments for it will help a lot.
What is Urinary Incontinence?
According to the National Association for Incontinence, urinary incontinence is the involuntary loss of urine. It can happen to most of us, but it is a common occurrence in seniors. In fact, 50% of women who are aged above 65 experience the condition. Lifestyle choices, health conditions, and typical aging may contribute to it.
Causes of Urinary Incontinence
The common causes of urinary incontinence include health conditions such as obesity, multiple sclerosis, stroke, constipation, Parkinson’s disease, and Alzheimer’s disease. In women, it can be brought about by childbirth, prior pregnancies, pelvic floor atrophy, and the onset of menopause. Men, on the other hand, may suffer from it if they have prostate problems.
Types of Incontinence
One type is called urge incontinence which is often referred to as overactive bladder. As the name implies, it involves the urgent need to urinate and can be characterized by losing urine even before they arrive at the toilet. Another is stress incontinence resulting from increased abdominal pressure. This comes with pain and may result from laughing, sneezing, coughing, lifting objects, and climbing stairs. The third one is total incontinence where the sphincter muscle is no longer doing its work, thus resulting in uncontrollable and constant bladder leakage.
There is also the type known as functional incontinence, resulting from neurological disorders, arthritis, and other disabilities. Overflow incontinence is another type, a condition where the bladder seems to be incapable of completely emptying itself. Mixed incontinence may likewise happen, where more than one of the aforementioned types may be experienced by a person.
Treatments for Urinary Incontinence
Medical assistance is crucial when you or a loved one is suffering from urinary incontinence. If your loved ones want to schedule an appointment with their primary care doctor, then so be it. That will help them become more open about their condition. Visiting a urologist for men and a urogynecologist for women will be a lot of help.
Behavioral therapy will also be the first thing that can help treat the condition once the diagnosis has been made. Delaying urination is also possible, since you may lengthen the time between their bathroom trips. Performing pelvic floor muscle exercises or Kegels will also be a good treatment since these strengthen muscles primarily responsible for regulating urination.
Moving Them into a Retirement Community
The possibility of moving them to an assisted living community must also form part of your consideration regarding this matter. It will help when someone is there to assist them with their needs, most especially if you are busy with work. Team members in these communities will readily help in these situations.