What Causes Urinary Incontinence?
Urinary incontinence is a symptom and not a disease in itself. Among the conditions which can give rise to incontinence are childbirth, pelvic surgery, injuries to the pelvic region or the spinal cord, neurological diseases, multiple sclerosis, poliomyelitis, infection and degenerative changes associated with ageing. It can also occur as a result of pregnancy, being overweight or a side effect of some medications. Temporary urinary incontinence may be caused by too much alcohol, a urinary tract infection and dehydration. Seeking Medical Advice Many people feel embarrassed speaking to a medical practitioner about incontinence but if it is affecting your quality of life, it is important to seek medical advice. Once you have been seen by your GP they may refer you to a urologist or urogynaecologist for further investigation and suitable treatment options Ideally, you should ask to speak to a specialist nurse (Continence Adviser) or a Urogynae Physiotherapist. In some areas within the UK, your local health authority may have self-referral continence clinics where you can telephone for an appointment. These clinics are run by specialist nurses who will be able to advise you and offer a treatment pathway. They will also refer you to a urologist or urogynaecologist if further investigation is needed. Do not let continence issues rule your life – seek help from those trained to advise you!