Anyone would panic if their underwear is stained with urine instead of vaginal discharge or menstrual blood. You may even feel embarrassed, as if you’ve gone back in time and started peeing your pants again. However, you're no longer a child, and having a disorder is nothing to be embarrassed about. If you’re hiding due to embarrassment, do not hesitate and immediately see a doctor.
A Disease, Not a Mistake
Your urine unintentionally leaks when abdominal pressure increases such as coughing, sneezing, jumping rope, running, laughing out loud, or going up the stairs.
Stress urinary incontinence (SUI) is also known as “stress incontinence” and “effort incontinence”.
SUI can happen when the pelvic muscles located below the bladder cause stress by pressuring the bladder, then, when pelvic muscles become weak they cannot handle external pressure. SUI can also happen when the sphincter muscle weakens.
SUI is a common disorder that accounts for 80-90% of urinary incontinence.
In general, SUI occurs most often in the age group under 10 for men and 40s to 50s for women after childbirth.
SUI occurs often in this age group for women due to sphincter injuries and imbalanced hormones caused by childbirth or menopause.
12.4% of women over the age of 20 around the world suffer from urinary incontinence. Amongst them 6% are in their 20s and 30s. Being young does not mean you can avoid SUI.
You can reduce your chances of developing SUI before symptoms even appear by making simple lifestyle changes.
- Reduce alcohol and caffeine intake or foods with strong flavors
- Limit the over-drinking of fluids
- Maintain a healthy weight appropriate for your height
- Practice Kegel exercises
✅ Non-surgical Treatment
- Change your lifestyle
- Kegel exercises
(a technique to visually examine the contraction of pelvic floor muscles while doing Kegel exercises through a specific device)
- Extracorporeal magnetic innervation therapy
(artificially performs pelvic exercises by generating currents from a magnetic field or electrical stimulation to the pelvic muscles)
- Drug therapy
(Drugs for SUI can have temporary effects but cannot fundamentally treat the condition itself)
✅ Surgical Treatment
- Mid-urethral sling
(a small incision is made in the vagina and an artificial tape is inserted to raise the abdomen or angle it towards the groin. This simple surgery has a high success rate.)
- In the past, many procedures were performed to raise the bladder neck by making an incision on the vagina or the abdomen.
(Recently, the mid-urethral sling is more commonly performed.)
- SUI is a disorder that can happen even to those in their 20s and 30s.
- It is time to confidently receive treatment instead of being embarrassed.