Although it affects one in three women over the age of 18, incontinence is usually very distressing and embarrassing for the women that suffer from it. There are many causes for sensitive bladders but the main causes are the structure of the female urinary tract, menopause, pregnancy and childbirth. Being overweight also puts pressure on the bladder, urethra, and pelvic floor muscles. Menopause related sensitive bladder is due to a significant drop in oestrogen levels. Pregnancy and childbirth can affect your pelvic floor support structures such as muscles and ligaments. Pelvic floor exercises, which are also called kegel exercises, are recommended as the first line treatment. These muscles control your urine flow and help hold your pelvic organs in place. Kegels are easy to perform and can be done anywhere without anyone knowing. The first step is to find the muscles you use to stop urinating by trying to stop your urine mid-flow. Get used to how they feel when they contract and relax. However, you should use this method for learning purposes only. It isn’t a good idea to start and stop your urine regularly, or to frequently do Kegel exercises when you have a full bladder. Incomplete emptying of the bladder can raise your risk for a urinary tract infection (UTI). Squeeze these muscles for 3 seconds. Then relax for 3 seconds. Your stomach and thigh muscles should not tighten when you do this. Add 1 second each week until you are able to squeeze for 10 seconds each time. Repeat this exercise 10 to 15 times per session. Try to do this at least 3 times a day. Avoid holding your breath. Instead, breathe freely during the exercises. The results from strengthening your pelvic floor muscles won’t happen for quite some time so you must be patient.
In the past, surgery was the only other option for women that struggled with kegel exercises or didn’t respond to medication. All this changed when advances in technology led to the development of non-surgical vaginal tightening laser technology. Vaginal lasers like FemiLift use a powerful carbon dioxide lasers to deliver thermal energy to the vagina and urethral area. The gentle heat causes contracture of the tissues, for an immediate firming and tightening effect, it also strengthens the supporting ligaments surrounding the bladder and urethra. The laser also induces the body to produce more collagen and elastin, to naturally restore a more youthful structure to the lining of the vagina. The success rate for treating urinary stress incontinence with fractional CO2 lasers is extremely high. Turning to alternative measures, some doctors believe that magnesium could relieve incontinence because it reduces bladder muscle spasms and allows the bladder to empty completely. So eating magnesium-rich foods such as bananas could be beneficial. Research also suggests that Vitamin D, which promotes calcium intake, can help curb incontinence. Losing Weight can help obese and overweight women that suffer from urinary Incontinence. Excess belly fat puts pressure on the bladder and the pelvic muscles, so shedding a few pounds if you are overweight can help restore your bladder control. Finally,chronic coughing can damage the muscles of the pelvic floor and smokers tend to cough more than non-smokers, so you can add another reason to ‘reasons to quit smoking’ list.