More people than ever are reporting problems with incontinence, according to a recent survey of nearly 20,000 U.S. adults. In particular, the number of women over age 20 who reported leaking urine during the previous 12 months increased from less than 50% of those surveyed in 2001 to more than 53% several years later. Of course, it’s no mystery why women tend to suffer more from incontinence than men. The biggest risk factor for the condition is vaginal childbirth. But that’s not the only reason. In addition, hormonal changes, weight gain, and conditions that affect the pelvic floor such as chronic cough can all lead to problems with bladder control. For the study, people were considered to have incontinence if they said within the last 12 months they had leaked urine while coughing, lifting, or during any type of activity, or when they could not reach the toilet fast enough. According to the survey, researchers found that the increase in urinary incontinence among women is partially explained by the fact that many women have chronic illnesses that increase their risk, such as diabetes and obesity. The good news is that the research team says there are a number of things women can do to help themselves. Previous research has suggested that more active women are less likely to report leaking urine than women who are inactive. This is because exercise can strengthen the pelvic floor muscles. And strengthening the pelvic floor muscles can be helpful in preventing the type of urinary leakage that happens when you sneeze, cough, or lift a heavy object. Besides walking, what other exercises can you perform to strengthen your pelvic muscles? Try Kegel exercises. Kegel exercises are a series of exercises that specifically strengthen the pelvic floor muscles. It can be difficult at first to identify the right muscles to exercise. Get your doctor’s advice or talk to a specialist if you’re interested in giving these exercises a try. At the very least, the exercises should keep your urinary problems from getting worse. At best, they might be able to eliminate your symptoms altogether.
Disclaimer: Results are not guaranteed*** and may vary from person to person***.
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