While women are more likely than men to experience urinary incontinence, the condition can be especially troublesome for men. Men seek care from incontinence after living with the problem for about 4.2 years on average. You don’t have to wait years to get some help. Take control by reading this men’s guide to urinary incontinence.
What Type Do You Have?
Start by knowing what kind of urinary incontinence (UI) you are dealing with. Recognizing the type leads to the causes, and the appropriate self care or treatment follows.
- If you have a sudden overwhelming need to pee, and you can barely make it to the bathroom, this is known as urge incontinence. This is also known as an overactive bladder (OAB).
- When certain behaviors like coughing, laughing, or bending over put pressure on your bladder and cause a leakage, this is stress incontinence.
- If you realize you have a combination of stress and urge incontinence, It’s called mixed incontinence.
- Lastly, overflow incontinence is when you never seem to be able to completely empty your bladder, and leakages or dribbling occurs frequently.
All of these issues can be treated and improved by making an appointment with one of our urologists at Texas Center for Urology.
Common Causes of Male Incontinence
Sometimes male incontinence can occur due to medical conditions like benign prostatic hyperplasia (enlarged prostate), diabetes, or Parkinson’s disease. It can happen after some types of prostate surgery from damage to the sphincter muscle.
Bladder control issues can be short term or long term. Certain medications can cause short-term UI. Cold therapies, depression medications, sedatives and diuretics can also lead to short-term incontinence.
It does occur more as men get older, but age is not a normal cause and treatment is within reach.
Conservative Management of Male Urinary Incontinence
You can take some control and make lifestyle changes on your own like the following:
- Limit caffeine, sodas, alcohol, and tea, especially before bed. All these can irritate your bladder, but don’t cut back liquids so much you become dehydrated.
- Figure out your triggers. Is it spicy foods, chocolate, or artificial sweeteners? Eliminate certain things from your diet and note any changes/improvements. Maintain a healthy weight.
- Try yoga, breathing exercises, and meditation plus anything that will reduce stress in your life.
- Set pee time. Go to the bathroom every half hour at first (whether you feel the need to go or not). Then make the time in between a little longer. Slowly work your way up to 4 hours if possible.
- Learn Kegel exercises.
After trying these conservative lifestyle changes, schedule a visit with one of our highly-trained urologists to discuss prescribed medications, devices, or procedures that could help.