Kegel Exercises

Your healthcare provider will figure out the best treatment based on:

  • How old you are
  • Your overall health and health history
  • How sick you are
  • How well you can handle specific medicines, procedures, or therapies
  • How long the condition is expected to last
  • Your opinion or preference

Treatment for UI depends on the cause and may include the following.

Behavioral therapies

These will to help you regain bladder control. They include:

o   Bladder training. This teaches you to resist the urge to void and expand the times between voiding over time.

o   Scheduled toileting. This therapy uses routine or scheduled toileting, habit training schedules, and prompted voiding to empty the bladder every 2 to 4 hours to prevent leaking.

Pelvic muscle rehab

This will improve pelvic muscle tone and prevent leakage. This treatment includes:

o   Kegel exercises. Regular, daily exercise of pelvic muscles can make the bladder muscles stronger and improve, and even prevent, urinary incontinence. This is most helpful for younger women. Should be performed 30 to 80 times daily for at least 8 weeks.

o   Biofeedback. Used along with Kegel exercises, biofeedback helps you gain awareness and control of their pelvic muscles.

o   Vaginal weight training. Small weights are held within the vagina by tightening the vaginal muscles. This may be done for 15 minutes, twice daily, for 4 to 6 weeks.

o   Pelvic floor electrical stimulation. Mild electrical pulses stimulate muscle contractions. This may be done along with Kegel exercises.

Other treatments

  • Medicines. This includes specific medicines for incontinence as well as estrogen therapy. These may be helpful along with other treatments for women with urinary incontinence who are past menopause.
  • Surgery. This is an option if the incontinence is related to problems such as an abnormally positioned bladder or a blockage. It may be used if other treatments don’t work, or if the incontinence is severe.
  • Diet changes. This includes avoiding caffeine and alcohol.
  • Adult diapers. Newer undergarments are no more bulky than normal underwear. You can wear them under everyday clothing.

You can also manage incontinence with other devices and products. This includes catheters, pelvic organ slings, urethral plugs, urine collection systems, and penile compression devices. Talk to your health care provider about which treatment might work best for you.

Consult your health care provider with your questions about the management and treatment of UI.