Incontinence affects thousands of individuals with multiple sclerosis (MS), as well as those with other neurological conditions. In this article, we’ll discuss the symptoms of incontinence and what you can do about it.

Incontinence in MS
People with MS may develop overactive bladder, underactive bladder, or both.
Source: Everyday Health

One of the symptoms of MS is a significant loss of urine or urine output. Regardless of the effort you make to control your urge to void. This is often referred to as “urinary urgency” and is an “evolutionary response” to neurological dysfunction and trauma. This loss of control, while unpleasant and noticeable to those living with the condition. Is very helpful for the effective treatment of MS.

What is Incontinence?

Unfortunately, in a phenomenon known as “functional constipation”. The adaptive response to urine loss continues once you stop taking certain medications that impact control. This is often seen in individuals who have ignored problems with control. And lowered the amount of liquid consumed on a daily basis.

Those living with MS, either short or long-term, may notice shortfalls in bladder control for a number of reasons. Genetics and age play a major contributing role with constipation, says Dr. Andrea Rossi, an assistant clinical professor of family medicine at Northwestern Medicine Feinberg School of Medicine.

People with Multiple Sclerosis who were diagnosed as children. May be more at risk for forgetfulness and other cognitive issues, which can be exacerbated in adulthood and with age.

Intervals of vagal function

Aside from genetics, age and neurological issues, there are a number of factors that can drastically impact bladder control. The most obvious are the age-related changes associated with menopause (when periods stop and ovulation ceases to happens) and women’s aging (including weight, lifestyle, hormone balance).

Corticosteroid use also plays an important role in the control of bladder function, especially as we age.

The age-related changes in the urinary system result in a loss of elasticity in the structures associated with control. This is an adaptive response to neurological crisis, as it allows for a release of compounds (like dopamine, norepinephrine and melatonin) that are necessary to heal the missing structure and restore function. But as we age, this response tends to decrease.

Future Research on Urological function

In the past few years, several genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have been performed in an attempt to uncover the specific genes that influence age-related loss of bladder control. For example, in the latest study, researchers looked at 616 MS-associated genes and identified 12 new loci associated with decreased urine output in adults with MS. Additional studies have identified similar genes.

Studies are still in their infancy, but studies like these have the potential to help us better understand the biological processes involved and potentially develop treatments to alleviate MS-related incontinence.

What is incontinence?

Similar to haemorrhaging and urine loss, incontinence occurs due to a buildup of fluid in the pelvic, abdominal and central bladder. (Urine is also known as seminal fluid.) This is generally due to the absence of a normal, functioning prostate, but may also result from some underlying medical conditions, as well as a lack of regular exercise.

Symptoms of incontinence:

  • Pelvic swelling
  • Urinary incontinence (loses fast and may shoot clear)
  • Muscle dryness
  • Weight loss
  • Urine retention

What to do about it

The most immediate action you can take to stop the symptoms of incontinence is to schedule exercise into your weekly routine. Aim to complete at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity or 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity exercise weekly. Discuss this with your doctor, along with your exercise routine during low-volume periods. If you are not able to make this schedule, you can perform it every other day before beginning your formal exercise regimen.

In addition to the planned exercise, you may also want to consider reducing fluid intake. For those who are able, self-catheterise through the loss of urine.

This will allow the muscle to readjust and fully recover. If you find you are retaining water for more than one day, it is important to check with your doctor to determine the cause. If you are unable to self-catheterise through the loss of water, consider a surgery consultation to make sure the cause is not more severe than the symptoms.

Toilet training

If you have not already done so, it’s best to get to know how your body normally empties itself. Get into the habit of keeping a regular diary of going to the bathroom whenever you feel the need to. Doing so can help prevent loss of moisture and bathroom accidents.

One way to ensure you keep up this behaviour is by performing toilet training. Many facilities have this option available with special instructions for those with incontinence problems.

Training options include public kneeling training, self-pleasuring training and the use of special training attendants. Personally, I have helped one of my clients who’s had a hard time with this issue build his training routine from functional training to plumbing training.

Without access to a toilet for training, the cause was unclear and his lack of self-control manifested itself into having to go 2 hours without a leak. By incorporating these training sessions, we were able to teach him the proper technique instead of simply changing what he was doing to address the issue.

Other solutions

Urologists have some tools to address these issues, as well.

Incontinence is a loss of control when it comes to sexual function. People who experience this struggle can lose their desire to have sex, be impotent or experience constant communication problems in their relationships as a result.

Lose control, and we’re talking about sex. And inevitably, the consequences that result can impact performance, relationships and the scope of work you perform as a professional. Add to that the lack of motivation to maintain a healthy lifestyle on top of the added stress that results from maintaining a battle with sexual function issues, and you can see how insomnia or other ailments associated with arousal can have a negative impact on your life.

MS presents an array of sexual issues, with premature ejaculation being the most common problem. Once men get erections, they don’t always stop, which can then lead to leaking and frequent urination. MS patients who had surgery to alleviate sexual function issues had a 25% increase in risk of premature ejaculation and urine loss. These are serious issues, and may necessitate medical intervention to combat the problem.

Who is Affected?

In addition to medical intervention, there are lifestyle choices that can change the way you see and accept your body, which can have an impact on the way you view sex and sexual function.

Here are some common issues associated with sexual disorders and how to best help yourself as well as those around you:

Erectile dysfunction, lack of refraction, corona, also known as delayed menopause, loss of sexual sensitivity, loss of pelvic floor muscles.

Absorption and Abnormal Erection

Sometimes, these symptoms aren’t detrimental to a person’s life or job, but instead are simply oddities that may not be enjoyable or enjoyable for sexual partners. In this case, they could just be the result of inexperience. The only way to know for sure is to talk with a sexual therapist. Researchers have started exploring the possibility that certain medications prescribed for erectile dysfunction are also effective in treating other sexual disorders, like hypopthalpatia.

Poor Stress Hormones, Sleep Disruption and Depression

People experiencing MS seem to run the gamut of the issues. Some people may have sleepless nights or constant fatigue, which can have a significant psychological component. Others might lose interest in everyday tasks or be easily distracted by unfavourable thoughts and images. Similarly, sleep problems and depression can lead to a lack of interest in relationships or work matters.

MS can result in inflammation of the brain, bone, muscles and other tissues. That’s a really rough dose of misery for the body, which we don’t mind feeling in control.

Related Posts

How to Treat Urinary Frequency or Polyuria
Urinary Urgency: Causes & Natural Treatment
5 Things You Didn’t Know About Urinary Hesitancy

How to Deal With Incontinence in MS

Stephen Walker is a blogger who has been living with Multiple Sclerosis or MS since 1994. He devotes a lot of time to researching this dreadful autoimmune disease, looking for answers and possible treatments.

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