Loss of control over your bladder can affect your ability to sleep, socialize, and perform day-to-day tasks. According to a CDC report, approximately half of all U.S. citizens above the age of 65 experience issues with bladder control.
Mixed incontinence is one of the causes of frequent urination in women. The symptoms of this condition come from a combination of urge urinary incontinence caused by an overactive bladder and stress incontinence from a weakened pelvic floor.
Read on to learn the causes and symptoms of mixed incontinence and the solutions available to help you manage the loss of control associated with involuntary bladder leaks.
Symptoms of Mixed Incontinence
Mixed urinary incontinence places immense pressure on your abdomen, uterus, and pelvic muscles, causing involuntary spasms in the bladder. The result is an overwhelming urge to urinate, which can lead to accidental leaks. Since mixed incontinence is associated with urge and stress incontinence, it shares the traits of both conditions. Here are symptoms that may indicate you are experiencing mixed incontinence:
- A sudden, intense urge to pee just minutes after using the bathroom
- Urination immediately after taking small amounts of fluids
- Frequent urge to pee while sleeping
- Urination caused by everyday activities such as sneezing, coughing, or laughing
- Urine leaks during pressure-induced activities such as waking, exercising, and heavy lifting
If you experience any of the above symptoms, consider making these dietary and lifestyle changes to boost bladder control.
What are the Causes of Mixed Incontinence?
Mixed incontinence in women shares the same risk factors that cause urge and stress incontinence. Identifying the causes of incontinence helps you adopt an effective treatment plan and drop habits that could aggravate your symptoms.
Here are some common causes of mixed incontinence:
- Pregnancy and childbirth
- Untreated diabetes, stroke, or thyroid issues
- Urinary tract infections
- Previous injury to the pelvic floor or uterus during C-section or other surgery
- Neurological diseases such as Parkinson's disease or multiple sclerosis
- Damage to the bladder tissue or nervous system
How is Mixed Incontinence Diagnosed?
Healthcare professionals are trained to diagnose mixed incontinence and recommend a treatment or management plan that suits your needs. If you are experiencing any symptoms of the condition, consider visiting a doctor for a comprehensive exam.
During the consultation, your physician will ask you the following questions to confirm the diagnosis of mixed incontinence:
- Do you have sudden, intense urges to pee even when your bladder isn't full?
- Do you experience bladder leaks when laughing, walking, or otter activities?
- Do you feel the urge to pass urine more than 8 times daily?
- How often do you wake up at night to pee?
- Do you often lose control of your bladder?
- Do you have any medical conditions like Parkinson's disease that affect bladder function?
- Have you had any previous pelvic surgery, such as a C-section?
Solutions for Mixed Incontinence
Most solutions for mixed incontinence draw on techniques used to treat and manage urge and stress incontinence. Doctors often recommend a mixed approach that may include behavioral treatments, physical exercises, botox injections, and more. Here are some of the tools available to help manage the symptoms of mixed urinary incontinence.
Training & Exercises
Bladder training and exercises suppress the sense of urgency and increase your bladder's ability to hold fluid for extended periods. The approach reduces leakage by strengthening pelvic and bladder muscles, allowing you to stick to a more predictable voiding schedule.
Pelvic floor exercises (kegels) are the most widely used options to strengthen the muscles around the pelvic organs. The exercises leverage short and long squeezes of the pelvis to help you control the opening and closing of the bladder. Over time, kegels can improve mixed incontinence by suppressing the urge to urinate frequently.
Medication can be used to relax the bladder, eliminating or reducing the symptoms of mixed urinary incontinence. Doctors often use botox injections to paralyze bladder muscles, thus decreasing involuntary bladder contractions that cause leakage. Typically, medication is used in combination with bladder training and conservative therapies.
Percutaneous Tibial Nerve Stimulation is a standard medical procedure used to restore the normal functioning of nerves that control urine passage. This treatment sends mild electrical impulses that jam signals to hyper-reactive nerves, allowing your bladder to resume normal voiding tendencies.
Surgery is an option in cases where mixed incontinence is caused by abnormal positioning of the bladder neck and urethra. Surgeons perform a bladder neck suspension procedure to halt involuntary urine loss.
The Bottom Line
Intense and uncontrollable urges to urinate can lead to worries that you may not always make it to the bathroom in time. To prevent mixed urinary incontinence from dominating your life, a physician can recommend various treatments and therapies to alleviate symptoms and reduce toilet accidents. Protective liners and pads are also available to provide comfort and peace of mind for those who experience involuntary urine leaks.
As a pioneer in the adult incontinence industry, Nexwear produces comfortable and discreet protective underwear that offers maximum absorption and odor control. Try our Nexwear Products to experience premium protection that sets you free to enjoy a confident and worry-free life.