Urinary incontinence can be treated, better managed and in many cases cured. Poor bladder control can range from the occasional leak to the complete inability to control your bladder, which may cause you to completely wet yourself. Some people feel constant need to urgently or frequently visit the toilet.
There are different types of incontinence with a number of possible causes and some people may experience more than one at any given time.


Stress incontinence occurs commonly when an outside pressure such as a laugh, cough, sneeze, or exercise, puts extra pressure on your bladder. Commonly due to weakened pelvic floor muscles leading to uncontrollable leakage of urine. Pelvic floor exercises, for women or men, can help reduce the occurrence of stress incontinence.


Functional incontinence is not caused by bladder problems, it is a physical inability preventing a person from being able to access and use a toilet, and often results in contained continence. This may be due to a persons inability to recognise their bladder and bowel signals, or a persons reduced mobility/ability to get to the bathroom without assistance.


Urge incontinence occurs when the bladder feels fuller than it really is and contracts. causing a sudden need to immediately urinate, and commonly causing leakage of urine before getting to the bathroom. A symptom of this is often urinary frequency, a person needing to visit the toilet more often (more than 5 to 7 times per day and more than twice a night) .


Nocturia, or the need to go to the toilet more than twice during the night. Can be caused by the above symptoms and many others. Nocturia can often be resolved or minimised with treatment and effective products.


Overflow occurs when the body has difficulty passing urine, resulting in frequent small amounts of leakage. Common signs are: straining to pass urine, a weak or slow urine stream, feeling your bladder is not empty just after going to the toilet, little or no warning when you need to pass urine There are a number of possible causes of overflow incontinence including a urethra blockage, a prolapse, enlarged prostates, frequent urinary tract infections or cystitis, and some medications and diabetics.

Chronic retention is when the bladder does not effectively empty, causing urine to remain in the bladder after urination. This is a common cause f Urinary Tract Infections, please seek medical advice.


Bowel incontinence is involuntary loss of faecal matter no matter how large or small. A number of conditions, such inability to recognise bowel signals, reduced mobility, diarrhoea, constipation or damaged sphincter muscles as well as medicines taken for unrelated problems can cause faecal incontinence. Please seek medical assistance for any bowel incontinence issues.

For more information including how to find your local continence clinic please visit Continence Foundation of Australia