24.10.18

Why Do People Who Suffer From Multiple Sclerosis Suffer From Incontinence?

A lot of people don’t know the problems that occur from having the condition of multiple sclerosis. In fact, the disorder often leaves people confused. They know that it’s a neurological condition which impacts the nerves, but that is where the knowledge ends. In fact, you might not realise but it can affect a lot more than just the nerves. The condition which has around 100,000 sufferers in the UK has a ton of symptoms which makes it difficult to diagnose and very difficult to live with. Some of the less well-known symptoms you might not be aware of include fatigue, problems with speech and tremors. And also one which affects sufferers is incontinence. This can be urge incontinence where their bladder can’t hold urine or they have to go to the toilet more often or it can be stress incontinence where they find that if they cough or laugh they can leak out. In fact, a high proportion of MS sufferers are unable to hold their bladder and leak involuntary. As the MS Trust website reveals, eight out of 10 suffer with urinary incontinence. And sufferers find they have to use continence pads on a daily basis which they get from companies like HARTMANN Direct. That way, they feel less embarrassed when they are out and about. If you are wondering why MS sufferers have to deal with incontinence, here are a few reasons why.

Nerve damage

One of the main reasons why people suffer from incontinence due to multiple sclerosis is because of the damage to the nerves. This damage which is common with MS sufferers can then stop those important muscles such as the detrusor which stores the urine to stop working. Therefore, when you least expect it, you may find you leak as your bladder. You also might find you won’t able to hold it as well any more. It also affects the muscles which contract to let the urine out. Therefore, you might struggle to go to the toilet when you feel like you need it. It can then lead to issues such as water infections due to you not passing urine when your body needs to. In addition to this, the nerve damages means that the body can’t communicate well with the muscles in the bladder. Therefore, you might need to go to the toilet but your body isn’t giving you those important warning signs.

Pelvic floor damage

One of the main reasons why MS sufferers tend to get stress incontinence is down to damage to their pelvic floor muscles. These are the muscles which help you to hold in the urine until you are safely on the toilet. The condition causes a lack of messages to the pelvic floor muscles so that they don’t know that they need to work and it often means they function poorly. So people find they leak due to their weak pelvic floor muscles and they can’t go to the toilet either. If you have had surgery before or given birth, this can make this problem even more likely.

Less mobility

As MS sufferers lose their ability to be very mobile, it can also cause issues for the body. After all, when you are moving around, it helps you to make sure you are physically healthy. In fact, exercise is so important for people to stay healthy. But with the loss of this in MS sufferers due to the muscle problems, it can cause issues such as incontinence. Your bladder can become sluggish and it causes sufferers to struggle to go to the toilet and to control their toilet. Therefore, incontinence can become a regular occurrence.

There are some things you can do if you are a sufferer from incontinence while living with MS. For starters, you should aim to do pelvic floor muscles which will strengthen them and help you to control the release of urine. Just squeezing these muscles several times a day can help to make a difference to your bladder. And as Bladder and Bowel Community explains, you need to make sure you are following a healthy lifestyle including eating a balanced diet and drinking plenty of water. This can help stop bladder infections and help to regulate your flow. Make sure you do go to the toiler regularly and try and get into a routine such as making sure you know where toilets are when you are out and about and try and avoid drinking too much before bedtime.

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