Understanding Incontinence in men

Incontinence in men

Incontinence in men is a condition that affects almost 6 and a half million men in the US alone. This is a much smaller population in comparison to females who experience the same condition. But, like women, it is a condition that can affect men of different ages. It is a fully treatable disorder, but still it carries a stigma that keeps a lot of men from seeking help and medical attention.

Incontinence is defined as the loss of bladder control and the subsequent accidental leakage of urine. Men of all ages are at different risks of developing the condition. One of the main differences between men and women is that in childhood girls tend to develop first bladder control than boys. It is far more normal for boys to experience bedwetting than girls. Nevertheless, women become more susceptible to Urinary Incontinence due to their female anatomy.  Still, many men tend to suffer from incontinence at different stages of their life, more frequently with age. Fortunately, to help men dealing with these conditions, in whichever level of severity that they might be experiencing, there is a large array of different incontinence products available for them.

Incontinence in men has been identified in three different types. All of them are fully treatable by medical care.  The most common and light problem of incontinence is called Stress Incontinence. This condition affects both men and women. It is the involuntary discharge of urine, normally in small amounts, due to sudden physical movement as coughing, sneezing and others. It happens when there is additional pressure on the bladder and it causes for urine to be released. Men with weak or no bladder control might experience moderate to heavy incontinence with this specific type.

In order for the urinary system to function properly, healthy nerves and muscles are needed. Nerves give the signal to the muscles to hold urine in the bladder. Urge Incontinence happens when there is an involuntary urination due to large and unexpected urges and can’t be stopped. This type of Incontinence can be treated, and it can happen in different amounts, from a small discharge to heavier loss of urine.

The third recognized type of incontinence in men is called Overflow Incontinence. This type of the condition is when there is a persistent trickling of urine. This condition is associated with urinating often but in small amounts.

Additionally to the aforementioned types of Incontinence there are factors and external causes for Urinary Incontinence. Certain injuries and diseases can cause for the loss of control of the bladder. Stroke patients, and people with Parkinson’s disease, among many other conditions that affect the brain and the nerve system can experience loss in control in the bladder, causing for untimely urination.  Furthermore, a more severe incontinence is caused by injuries on the spinal cord, as the brain is no longer able to send signals to the bladder therefore losing control. 

Finally, another common indirect cause for incontinence in men is problems with their prostate. With age the prostate gland grows, this condition is called BPH (benign prostatic hyperplasia). The enlargement of the prostate will clasp the urethra and ultimately affect the flow of urine. This will cause for weak streams of urine and constant involuntary trickling. Men who had their prostate removed due to prostate cancer can experience urinary incontinence as well. Other treatments for prostate cancer can also have incontinence as a result.

Incontinence is an embarrassing subject that many men and women tend to avoid and not discuss. This prevents them from getting the necessary treatment they need, and help them restore their quality of life.