Understanding Female Incontinence
Incontinence affects women almost twice as much as men. Pregnancy, childbirth, menopause, and the anatomy of a woman’s urinary tract are all factors that increase the likelihood of incontinence.
Older women may experience incontinence more so than younger women. However, it’s not a fact of life that you’ll become incontinent as you get older. Incontinence is manageable and often treatable, no matter what age or physical condition you are in.
Did you know?
- Between the ages of 18 and 44, approximately 24% of women experience incontinence
- For women over age 60, approximately 23% deal with incontinence
You're not alone
The level of incontinence a woman suffers can range from a slight leakage when you laugh, cough or sneeze, to frequent loss of large amounts of urine. Some women think it’s a part of normal development and don’t view it as an actual medical condition, which it certainly is.
This leads many female incontinence sufferers to ‘grin and bear’ the discomfort and frequent mad dashes to the loo rather than seek help or medical advice. If you, or someone you care about become incontinent, talk to your doctor straightaway.
If you need immediate help in managing your incontinence, you can try Depend’s® product guide or pick up a free sample today to help find out what works for you.
Why women become incontinent
Some common causes for women include:
- UTIs and bladder infections
- Surgical procedures
- Birth defects, progressive illnesses such as Alzheimer’s disease and other chronic conditions
It’s important to understand that incontinence is not an inevitable part of aging, nor is it necessary to accept long-term incontinence after bearing a child. In many cases, it can be cured, and it can always be managed.
Understanding your body
Many women with incontinence have weakened or damaged pelvic floor muscles, and may not be able to sense when their bladders are full, which leads to difficulty in controlling urination.
Urine is about 95% water and 5% waste. Some people incorrectly believe that by drinking less fluid, they will reduce their bladder control loss. In fact, urine that is more concentrated due to lack of fluid intake can irritate the bladder and cause more serious problems such as infection and dehydration. In addition, inadequate fluid intake can cause constipation, which may also make matters worse.