Urinary incontinence or UI refers to a condition where an individual experiences accidental leaking of urine. Over 3.4 million men in the United States alone suffer from this problem, which, although not a disease, impacts the physical and emotional health of a person.
UI is a symptom of an underlying problem in the urinary system or prostate that could arise from various reasons. Here we will discuss some of the common causes and ways to tackle the problem in detail.
What Happens When You Have UI?
Urine, which is one of the ways the body exits the metabolic waste and toxins, is created in the kidney and stored in the urinary bladder. The urethra, a tube that leads from the bladder to the penis, eliminates the urine outside of the body.
Typically, the muscles around the tube keep it intact unless signaled by the relaxed bladder muscles to excrete the urine. But for men suffering from the condition, the bladder may prematurely signal or squeeze too hard, leading to leakage. Other situations include weak muscles near the tube or blockage in the urethra. In this case, effective solutions like incontinence briefs can come in handy to spare the embarrassment of urine leakage while in public.
1. Nerve Damage
Total incontinence is the most common condition caused by nerve or muscle damage. In this case, the individual experiences leaking urine mainly when the sphincter muscle or nerves in the region are no longer working correctly.
Nerve endings play a significant role in signaling the various organs involved in storing and excreting urine. The combination of muscles and nerves that control the activity may experience damage due to a spectrum of conditions including, Parkinson's disease, diabetes, multiple sclerosis, herniated discs, dementia, spinal cord injuries, stroke. These nerves could contribute to a lack of urinary control that leads to leakage. Muscle damage around the urethra due to aging or accident is also a factor for urine to leak out.
Weight problems can also lead to incontinence in men. Urge incontinence is a common type observed in individuals dealing with weight-related issues. The immediate need to urinate without any further delay is caused as the bladder squeezes when it shouldn't have. Wearing tight clothes or accessories that may mistakenly press the bladder could also cause this issue.
3. Food Habits
Certain foods and beverages may stress the urinary system. It could lead to stress incontinence, where urine leaks when you sneeze, cough, laugh, lift something, change position, or do considerably something that puts stress or strain on your bladder. In case the bladder squeezes at the wrong time, that causes urine leakage. Overdoing fluid intake is a common reason that adds stress to the system, leading to losing bladder control over time. Unhealthy eating habits, excess alcohol intake are some causes for this problem.
4. Prostate Ailments Or Problems
Prostate problems that happen with age, such as loss of muscle strength, are a common cause for using urinary control. Enlarged prostate due to any ailment can affect the urine flow, lead to frequent urination, and causes leakages as well. Stress incontinence induced by physical movements or activities is the most common type of problem caused by this challenge.
How to manage Urinary Incontinence?
- Cut back on caffeine drinks, like coffee and tea, and reduce your alcohol intake significantly.
- Increase your regular fiber intake to help avoid constipation.
- Quit smoke.
- Pursue a healthy diet trend to maintain a healthy weight.
- Explore simple pelvic floor exercises like Kegels that can strengthen the muscles in this region and offer more bladder control.
Explore absorbent products such as adult diapers that help individuals suffering from incontinence. These products absorb and hold urine. You can also try superior products like incontinence briefs that are easy to use regularly and avoid heavy leakage. They enable you to carry on with your every activity without having to worry about urine leakage. But make sure to change them frequently and keep them clean to avoid infections and rashes.
Intermittent catheterization, also known as Clean Intermittent Catheterization or (CIC), is the process of inserting a catheter tube in the urethra 3 to 5 times a day. You can remove the catheter after excreting and throw it away.
The advantage of these tubes is that you don't have to wear them all day. They lower the chances of infection and reduce any hindrance to your movement as well. You can also consider long-time catheter systems like Foley catheters and Suprapubic catheters. These go in the urethra and above your pubic bone respectively and drain with the help of a bag.
Urine Drainage Bags
Urinary drainage bags collect urine coming out of the bladder. They are suitable for overnight use and come with a capacity of 1.5 to 2.0 liters. These are typically large and therefore cannot be hidden. They need to stay close to the body for the best benefits. Drainage bags are reusable and can be cleaned and deodorized.
Urinary incontinence is a condition that requires specific treatment depending on the cause. While most cases are solvable with exercise and healthy eating habits, some might require surgeries as well. Consult your physician to get the necessary help, and meanwhile, look for competent products like incontinence briefs to bring more comfort to your day-to-day lives.