PANAMA CITY, Fla. - Our bladders know what to do without us.
"It's a natural reflex we were born with," said Dr. Nicole Eisenbrown.
As we grow older and potty train, Dr. Eisenbrown, said we learn to control that reflex.
However, it can start reactivating later in life, leading to accidents or more frequent trips to the bathroom.
"It is an embarrassing topic but its a fixable one."
Dr. Eisenbrown said it's an extremely common problem but highly misunderstood.
In order to fix it, she must determine which type of incontinence a patient has.
"There are two types of incontinence. Stress incontinence and urge incontinence."
Stress incontinence comes from weakness in the tissue, from pregnancy, labor, or aging, and happens with activity.
"So if someone tells me they leak when they laugh, cough, sneeze, exercise, then my suspicion is they most likely have stress urinary incontinence."
The other type, urge incontinence, is a behavioral issue, and could be the reason for frequent trips to the bathroom at night and during the day as well as the sense of urgency you may have when you need to pee.
"Because the pathology is different, the fix is different."
Sometimes, a patient's problem can be a mix of both. Depending on the diagnosis, there are medications, lifestyle changes, pelvic floor exercises, and surgery for relief.
You're invited to learn more about this and other bladder issues in a free seminar at Bay Medical Sacred Heart on November 30, from 5 to 7 p.m., in the auditorium conference room.
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