Incontinence can be a very stressful and embarrassing condition, but it helps to know that you are not alone and we can help you.
One of the main causes of incontinence is weakened pelvic floor muscles, which support the internal organs of the pelvis and prevent urine or stool leakage.
What types of incontinence are there?
- Stress urinary incontinence: the involuntary loss of small amounts of urine while coughing, laughing, or participating in a physical activity — weakened pelvic floor muscles may be ineffective in preventing leakage.
- Urge urinary incontinence: the involuntary loss of large amounts of urine associated with an abrupt and strong desire to urinate and is often due to an oversensitive bladder.
- Mixed urinary incontinence: a condition where both stress and urge urinary incontinence coexist.
- Fecal and gas incontinence: may result from weakened external anal sphincter and pelvic floor muscles. This condition is often seen in women during the postpartum period and in the elderly. In many cases, you can improve this condition by retraining the pelvic floor muscles.
How can we work?
Physical therapy is available to treat incontinence and help improve your overall quality of life and happiness.
First, you will have an initial evaluation by your physical therapist, that will determine the type and extent of incontinence you are suffering from, the strength of your pelvic floor muscles, as well as if you have other musculoskeletal issues affecting your pelvis.
Your therapist will then work with you to develop an individualized exercise treatment program.
Some methods of treating incontinence through physical therapy include:
- Pelvic floor exercises.
- Bladder training.
- Biofeedback among others.