Several treatments for stress incontinence are recommended for patients depending on their symptoms and overall health. Early treatments usually include lifestyle changes that can reduce symptoms, these include quitting smoking, avoiding caffeinated beverages, and reducing alcohol intake. A urinary diary may be useful to track stress incontinence to determine the severity of the condition.
In general, there are four categories of treatments for stress incontinence: behavioral/lifestyle changes, medications, muscle toning for the pelvic floor and surgery.
Behavioral/Lifestyle Treatments for Stress Incontinence
- Reduce liquid intake to normal amounts
- Urinate more often to avoid a full bladder
- Limit jumping, running or other physical activity that cause leakage
- Increase dietary fiber or take laxatives to improve regularity of bowel movements and relieve constipation
- Stop smoking (reduce coughing/bladder irritation)
- Avoid caffeinated drinks and alcohol
- Lose weight if necessary
- Avoid spicy foods and carbonated drinks
- Maintain blood sugar
Pelvic Floor Muscle Training
Often called Kegel exercises, pelvic floor muscle training is an effective treatment option for stress incontinence. These exercises help strengthen the muscles that control the bladder. Learn more about this technique by scheduling an appointment at Florida Hospital.
Medications for Treating Stress Incontinence
- Overactive bladder medications (anticholinergic)
- Medications to block bladder contractions (Antimuscarinic)
- Alpha-adrenergic agonist drugs
- Imipramine (antidepressant)
- Estrogen hormone therapy
Surgery for Stress Incontinence
For most patients, surgery can only be performed if the exact cause of the incontinence is discovered. This is usually not the first treatment option recommended by doctors at Florida Hospital, although it is the only cure for the condition.
- Collagen injections to make enlarge the urethra
- Male Sling or Vaginal sling
- Anterior vaginal repair (for cystocele)
- Artificial urinary sphincter
- Retropubic suspensions
- Tension-free vaginal tape
Find out if you’re a candidate for cutting-edge, minimally invasive treatment at Florida Hospital. Schedule an appointment online today.