Urinary incontinence: managing a serious issue

Introduction

ONE in 20 Australians experiences regular urinary incontinence; however, of these, only 31% report having sought help from a health professional.1 

Women are more likely to be affected than men, with 50% of women aged 45–59 having experienced incontinence in the past three months. 

Within the general population, 19% of children and 10% of men report urinary incontinence.2 Once patients reach the age of 75, 40% will be incontinent of urine.

The simple question, ‘How are your waterworks?’, may remove the barrier patients perceive in seeking ongoing assistance. Urinary incontinence affects a person’s quality of life and can affect his or her mental health. 

Types

Urge incontinence: associated with or directly preceded by urgency

Stress incontinence: leakage with exertion, coughing or sneezing

Mixed incontinence:

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