March 07, 2014
Continence Service for Moyne Health Services
Urinary incontinence is not caused by aging, unfortunately some of the diseases and medications we take can cause bladder problems. Most bladder problems can be cured or at least made more manageable. One type of incontinence we notice more as our population ages is urgency and urge incontinence.
The urgent need to urinate and not being able to get to the toilet in time is called urgency and urge incontinence. This is a bladder problem that needs to be assessed for the correct treatment. The normal bladder gives us a warning that the bladder is filling when it is about 2/3 full. With people who have urgency and urge incontinence, the first urge to void is so strong that it cannot always be deferred; therefore there will be urine leakage from the bladder.
The symptoms of this type of bladder problem is an urgent desire to pass urine that cannot be deferred, frequency of urination, more than 6 times per day, nocturia, going to the toilet to pass urine at night more than twice, and urine leakage on the way to the toilet.
Sometimes we are unable to determine the cause of this type of incontinence, but there are several things that can contribute. Caffeine, alcohol, cola drinks, tea, concentrated urine, constipation, an enlarged prostate, bladder infections, some medications and some medical conditions. Diabetes, Parkinson’s disease, Multiple Sclerosis, stroke and other medical conditions that interfere with the communication between the brain and the bladder can cause urgency and urge incontinence. For some people a lifetime of poor bladder habits can cause this type of incontinence.
There are some things that sufferers can do to help themselves. Limiting drinks containing caffeine or alcohol, or drinking another drink immediately afterwards can dilute the amount of caffeine or alcohol in the bladder. Ensuring an adequate fluid intake is very important. Unless a person is on a fluid restriction, we know when we have enough to drink by the colour of our urine. Overnight it will be dark in colour, but during the day is should be a very pale yellow. Treating constipation and bladder infections can also help as well. Having your doctor check your medications on a regular basis to see if you still need them. Pelvic floor exercises can help with putting off the urge to urinate. You can see a continence nurse who can teach bladder retraining and deferment techniques. Having a full assessment with a continence nurse can give you access to professional services and self-help information. Some people can also be eligible for financial assistance with buying pads.
Moyne Health Services offers appointments with an experience continence nurse on a fortnightly basis the first and third Mondays of the month, an appointment can be made by calling 55680002.