Incontinence disallows women to lead a normal life, thereby paving the way for embarrassing situations and heightened levels of discomfiture. By undertaking specialized adult incontinence exercises for women, such patients can not only get rid of this problem but also feel more relaxed at all times.
“I laughed so hard that I wet my pant.” How often have you used this expression in a light-hearted way to describe a situation that others may have found very funny? Well, it may be a normal statement for you, but for women who really leak urine whenever they laugh, sneeze or cough, urine incontinence is nothing funny. Adult incontinence is a condition which leads to embarrassment for millions of women suffering from its tell-tale signs and symptoms. But luckily, today there are solutions to this problem and that too without medicines. Pill-free treatment includes Kegel’s exercises, weight loss, and bladder training. This blog will help you gain a closer peep at easy ways of handling all incontinence woes.
Types of Urinary Incontinence in Adults
Urinary continence faced by adults usually falls under two categories:
Stress incontinence: This is caused due to the pressure applied on the bladder as a result of laughing, coughing, exercising, sneezing or even lifting something heavy. In this case, the most common cause is childbirth which damages the pelvic floor muscles to a large extent, thereby inducing incontinence in the later stages of life.
Urge incontinence: This results because of an over-active bladder and is usually attributed to the unpredictable contractions of bladder muscles. An overactive bladder may be the cause of bladder infections too. Some chronic conditions such as Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, diabetes or stroke can also lead to an overactive bladder. Do know that post-menopausal women tend to have such bladders that lead to incontinence in more ways than one. Symptoms include the need to urinate frequently, sudden urge to urinate, leaking urine, and waking up several times to urinate.
Some other types of urinary incontinence include:
Mixed incontinence carries the symptoms of both stress incontinence as well as an overactive bladder.
Overflow incontinence is more frequent in men than in women, wherein the urine flow from an overfull bladder is blocked.
Treating Urinary Incontinence
Several types of treatment are available for treating this type of adult incontinence which includes:
- Special exercises such as Kegel’s exercises and pelvic floor muscle training with biofeedback,
- Bladder training which involves scheduling urinary urges,
- Medical devices like electric and magnetic stimulation and percutaneous tibial nerve stimulation,
- Medicines like Topical estrogen, Oxybutynin, Darifenacin and more.
Treating Urinary Incontinence without Medicines
Before opting for medication for treating adult incontinence, one should try out the various exercises that are recommended by health experts to overcome urinary incontinence.
The most popular and recommended exercise to help an overactive bladder is Kegel’s exercises which helps in strengthening bladder muscles. Also known as Pelvic Floor Muscle Training (PFMT), Kegel’s involves the repeated squeezing and relaxation of pelvic floor muscles. These exercises relate to the techniques that are used for tightening and toning up the pelvic floor muscles that have become weak over time. Hold each squeeze for at least three seconds and repeat Kegels 10 times. By doing these exercises, the sphincter muscle is strengthened which in turn helps to prevent urine from leaking out. Kegel’s exercises also help in eliminating urge incontinence. If you are unsure as to how to proceed with these exercises, simply mimic what you do to stop yourself from urinating.
Women who have difficulty knowing when the pelvic muscles are contracting can take the help of Biofeedback therapy that uses computer and electronic instruments for giving results, these exercises are to be performed with the help of a trained professional. These professional trainers help to verify that the Kegels are being done correctly or not. The main advantage of this type of therapy is that the patient gets a continuous feedback of the quality as well as the intensity of the contractions of the pelvic floor.
Training Your Bladder
Training your bladder involves urinating on schedule. This helps in learning to hold urine and training the bladder to gradually increase the amount that you can hold comfortably. It is the most effective solution for women who have an overactive bladder. Mostly women are unaware that they can wait for three to six hours between urinating. The goal of bladder training is to fix up a schedule which will have you going only once in three to four hours. With proper training, you gain better control over your bladder.
Vaginal cones are a type of weight training for your pelvic floor muscles to overcome adult incontinence. Here, you are expected to lift the weights with your pelvic floor muscles. The exercises start with light cones and gradually proceed to lifting heavier cones. The use of vaginal cones is effective in women suffering from stress incontinence.
Weight Loss and Exercises
Overweight and obese women need to exercise and lose weight to overcome urinary incontinence. Extra weight puts pressure on the pelvic muscles and the bladder, thus leading to the need to urinate more often. By following a healthy diet and exercising regularly, these women can take care of their urinary incontinence issues to the hilt. Positive lifestyle changes that help in adult incontinence includes keeping a watch on your fluid intake, taking care not to exceed the intake, quitting smoking and tobacco-based products, and minimizing the intake of bladder irritants such as caffeine, carbonated drinks, alcohol, citrus fruits and spicy foods.
Adult incontinence is no doubt a condition which threatens to disrupt normal living. Women suffering from urinary incontinence suffer from loss of dignity and avoid social gatherings due to fear and anxiety. Non-drug treatment for incontinence has been found to be very effective with most women responding positively to this type of therapy. Today, women do not have to live with this condition. Seeking their doctor’s advice to help overcome the issues related to incontinence can bring back their lost confidence in reliable ways.
Are you ready to try out these exercises for tackling adult incontinence?