Menopause urinary incontinence can significantly reduce the quality of life. In addition, urinary incontinence problem has its own nuances. If the blood pressure begins to “jump” or signs of hormonal changes in the body appear, the woman immediately goes to the doctor, confidentially tells him about her condition and receives the necessary treatment, which improves her health. But, when urinary incontinence occurs, women are often embarrassed to go to the doctor with this.
Thus, after 50 years, a woman’s quality of life can noticeably decrease: it becomes difficult to work, travel, play sports and just communicate with loved ones, and intimate life is violated. To correct the situation, first, you need to understand the cause of the disorder.
Causes of Urinary Incontinence in Menopause
How does menopause lead to urinary incontinence? There is a list of definite reasons for it, here it is:
- Age-related hormonal changes
With the onset of menopause, many women experience so-called stress UI. The fact is that the female sex hormone estrogen, among other things, helps maintain muscle tone of the pelvic organs. And with an age-related decrease in estrogen production, the pelvic muscles weaken, especially in women who do not exercise regularly. This leads to the fact that the bladder loses its tone, and episodes of urinary incontinence during menopause can occur, especially with stress or even slight physical exertion.
- Overactive Bladder
Often this syndrome occurs in those women after 50 years who have diabetes or thyroid disease. With an overactive bladder, an acute urge to go to the toilet occurs even with a small accumulation of urine. And after going to the toilet, there is a feeling that the bladder has not been emptied to the end.
- Chronic inflammatory diseases of the pelvic organs
For example, such common female diseases as chronic cystitis or untreated fungal infections cause constant irritation of the walls of the bladder. With age, this also leads to “incoordination” of the work of the sphincters, the urge to the toilet becomes chaotic and urinary incontinence occurs.
- Difficult or repeated labors
It is connected with the fact that during pregnancy, the load on the blood vessels and muscles of the pelvic organs increases.
- Taking definite types of medications
After 50 years, many developed hypertension. So, some antihypertensive agents (that is, to reduce blood pressure) have a diuretic effect. And in the presence of the above-mentioned age-related health problems, it is more difficult for the body to control the work of the bladder. Often, with the appointment of sleeping pills, there is night urinary incontinence menopause. Therefore, if you notice that frequent urination or urinary incontinence appeared after prescribing any medicine, be sure to inform your doctor about it.
Diagnostics of Menopause Urinary Incontinence Pathophysiology
To establish the exact cause of UI in women, first, you need to contact your doctor – therapist and in no case do self-medication. The therapist, based on your medical history, will refer you either to a specialist: a gynecologist, endocrinologist, urologist, and possibly a psychiatrist (because often incontinence is associated with an emotional state).
Among the diagnostic methods that are used to establish the true cause of urinary incontinence and menopause are:
- Urinalysis will show if there is inflammation in the bladder;
- Ultrasound of the pelvic organs will help to clarify whether there is inflammation, as well as sand or stones in the bladder, and in what condition are the organs adjacent to the bladder;
- Cystometry will help to find out how correctly the bladder is filled, and when there is an urge to go to the toilet, the pressure inside the bladder is measured;
- A test with a pad helps find out how much urine a woman spontaneously releases in a few hours (the pad is weighed before and after the test).
Treatment of Urinary Incontinence Post-menopause
Many women have to survive this condition. UI can occur at the most inopportune moment.
How to help urinary incontinence after menopause and improve the quality of life?
- Therapeutic methods
Depending on the cause of the disorder, various groups of drugs are prescribed – from antibiotics and anti-inflammatory (if the cause is infectious), to antispasmodics (with an overactive bladder), or adrenomimetics that increase muscle tone and anti-anxiety medications. Sometimes, combined treatment is required along with physiotherapy.
- Surgical methods
In some types of urinary incontinence, for example, under stress, if therapy is ineffective and there are indications, they can prescribe an operation – a mesh tape is attached under the urethra, which holds back the urine. Also, surgical methods for bladder fixation and plastic surgery techniques are used.
- Use of urological pads
An important point – with urinary incontinence, conventional sanitary pads for “critical days” will not be able to provide adequate comfort, duration of protection against leaks, and also will not save you from skin irritation. Unfortunately, urinary incontinence menopause can be completely cured in rare cases. But, despite this, you can maintain a high quality of life and engage in daily activities without restrictions, using special absorbent products.
Prevention of Urinary Incontinence During Menopause
To prevent and avoid the development of the UI in the menopausal period, women should adhere to the following rules:
- Exercise regularly to strengthen the muscles of the pelvis. The simplest ones to do are 10-15 squats two-three times a day.
- Control the food intake. One has to:
- limit salt intake (excess salt causes thirst and aggravates the urge to urinate).
- refuse of vinegar (vinegar increases spasms of the bladder and increases thirst).
- establish the correct drinking regime: drink up to two liters of water per day but in small portions.
- Lead an active lifestyle. In order to keep the circulation and muscle condition of the pelvic organs in good shape, try to walk in intensive steps minimum of 40 minutes a day. Of the fitness loads, classes on the treadmill and swimming are good. A woman should do it at least three times a week.
Urinary incontinence menopause is a serious problem and it requires qualified treatment, remember this!
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