A Complete Guide to Stress Incontinence and How to Manage it

Dealing With Stress Incontinence
6 March 2023

A Complete Guide to Stress Incontinence and How to Manage it

Stress incontinence is one of the most common forms of incontinence. It is a medical condition that affects millions of people around the world and occurs when pressure is exerted on the bladder during coughing, sneezing, laughing, or exercise. 

Stress incontinence can be a frustrating and embarrassing problem that can have a significant impact on a person's quality of life. 

Let’s find out a bit more about what causes stress incontinence, the symptoms you may experience, and how you can relieve your symptoms at home. 

What are the causes of stress incontinence?

Stress incontinence can be caused by a variety of things, including weakened pelvic muscles, hormonal changes, and nerve damage. 

Women are more likely to experience stress incontinence than men because of the effects of pregnancy, childbirth, and menopause on the pelvic muscles. In men, stress incontinence is usually caused by prostate surgery, although it could also be caused by a range of other medical conditions.

What are the symptoms of stress incontinence?

The main symptom of stress incontinence is the involuntary leakage of urine when pressure is put on the bladder. This sort of pressure can occur due to physical activity, such as exercise, or during normal daily activities, such as coughing or sneezing. Other symptoms of stress incontinence can include a frequent need or sudden urge to urinate, or difficulty emptying the bladder completely. 

The amount of urine leakage can vary, from a few drops to a full bladder. 

What is the best treatment for stress incontinence?

There are a variety of treatments available for stress incontinence, depending on the severity of the condition and the underlying cause.

1. Pelvic floor exercises

One of the most common treatments for stress incontinence is pelvic floor exercises, which involve contracting and relaxing the muscles that control the bladder. 

These exercises can help to strengthen the pelvic muscles, improve bladder control, and can be done in the comfort of your own home, making them an attractive option for most problems. 

2. Medication

Other treatments for stress incontinence can include medications, such as alpha-blockers, which can help to relax the bladder and improve urinary control.

3. Surgery

In some cases, surgery may be recommended to treat stress incontinence, such as a sling procedure, which involves the placement of a sling around the urethra to support the bladder.

What is the best way to prevent stress incontinence?

While stress incontinence can be difficult to treat, there are steps that can be taken to prevent the condition from developing in the first place. One of the most effective ways to prevent stress incontinence is to maintain a healthy weight, as excess weight can put additional pressure on the bladder and weaken the pelvic muscles. Regular exercise can also help to strengthen the pelvic muscles and improve bladder control.

You may also want to consider avoiding foods and drinks that can irritate the bladder, such as caffeine and alcohol, and practising good bladder habits, such as emptying the bladder regularly and completely.

Women can also take steps to prevent stress incontinence during pregnancy and childbirth, such as doing pelvic floor exercises and using proper lifting techniques.

What are some tips and tricks for living with stress incontinence

Living with stress incontinence can be challenging, but there are steps that can be taken to manage the condition and improve your quality of life. One of the most important things that people with stress incontinence can do is to stay positive and seek support from family, friends, and healthcare professionals.

We have a huge variety of products available that can help to manage stress incontinence, such as incontinence pads and rubber pants, as well as accessories and mobility aids that will help to make your day to day life feel a lot more comfortable.

Can you live a normal life with stress incontinence?

Stress incontinence is a common and often frustrating medical condition that can have a significant impact on a person's quality of life. While it can be challenging to manage, there are a variety of treatments available that can help to improve bladder control and reduce leakage. 

Stress incontinence doesn’t have to control your life - manage your symptoms with a wide range of incontinence products from Incontinence Shop.

Stress Incontinence Resources

  1. https://www.urologyhealth.org/urologic-conditions/stress-urinary-incontinence-(sui)
  2. https://www.webmd.com/urinary-incontinence-oab/stress
  3. https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/urinary-incontinence/
  4. https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/stress-incontinence/symptoms-causes/syc-20355727