Female Urinary Incontinence

Having less control over your bladder is frustrating and can cause anxiety and self-consciousness. The severity of the problem ranges from minor leaking to not being able to make it to the restroom. Dr. Neetu K Sodhi is an incontinence specialist and her practice, Bloom Obstetrics and Gynecology, serves women of Tarzana, CA, the San Fernando Valley as well as the greater Los Angeles area.

learn more

Female Urinary Incontinence

What causes female incontinence?

As a woman, you may be at increased risk for bladder leaks as the result of the hormonal fluctuations of menopause and the strain of childbirth.

The three main types of incontinence:

Stress incontinence: urine leaks are the result of common physical activities that put pressure on the bladder, including laughing, sneezing, coughing, and sexual intercourse.

Urge incontinence: often the result of bladder weakness or overactive bladder activity and causes a frequent need to urinate, or difficulties making it to the toilet in time.

Mixed incontinence: bladder control issues that have symptoms of both stress and urge incontinence.

Female incontinence may also be the result of nerve problems or chronic disease or disorders. At Bloom Obstetrics and Gynecology, Dr. Sodhi performs comprehensive diagnostics to determine the primary cause of your incontinence issues and offers several non-invasive and minimally invasive techniques to keep you dry and confident.

How is female incontinence diagnosed?

Dr. Sodhi will discuss your health history and frequency of leaks to evaluate what type of incontinence issues you experience. She may recommend that you come in with a bladder diary to give her a better understanding of your symptoms.

To rule out other underlying medical conditions, Dr. Sodhi will perform a pelvic exam and may also order a urine sample and imaging tests, like ultrasounds, to identify infections or other abnormalities. She may also perform urodynamic testing especially in the case of suspected mixed urinary incontinence.

What can I do to reduce my incontinence?

Dietary factors can also contribute to either stress or urge incontinence. Regular intake of bladder stimulants can increases the volume of urine or contract the bladder. These substances include:

  • Caffeine
  • Alcohol
  • Sugar
  • Spicy food
  • Acidic food (tomato sauce, citrus fruits, vinegar, etc)
  • Muscle relaxants; heart and blood pressure meds
  • Excessive amounts of Vitamin C (generally only seen with supplementation)
  • Not drinking enough water; chronic dehydration can concentrate the urine and irritate the bladder lining.

See what substances you may be using on a regular basis and try to cut back to determine how simple dietary changes may help keep you dry.

What treatments are available for female incontinence?

Dr. Sodhi has a variety of treatment options to address female urinary incontinence. She will treat any underlying infection and offer specialty probiotics and ayurvedic formulations to promote a healthy urinary tract and normal urine flow. She may offer prescription medications to calm your overactive bladder or topical estrogens to help restore your vaginal region to help support your bladder.

Dr. Sodhi offers ThermiVA radiofrequency vaginal rejuvenation and uses it specifically for patients with mild stress urinary incontinence and overactive bladder with amazing results, avoiding the need for unnecessary hormones or prescription medications and more importantly, avoiding the downtime and risks associated with surgery.

As an adjunct, Dr. Sodhi may also suggest bladder training exercises or biofeedback therapy to strengthen and help you control your pelvic floor muscles.

If surgical intervention is necessary to control urine leakage, Dr. Sodhi can perform a minimally-invasive sling procedure which is extremely effective at treating severe stress incontinence.