Common Incontinence Terms

Aimee Sharp
Author | Shield HealthCare
05/11/17  3:10 PM PST
Common Incontinence Terms

If you are familiar with the incontinence terms below, it may help conversations with your doctor progress more easily. Her is a list of common terms related to incontinence that you might hear when talking with your healthcare provider:

  • Anticholinergic agents: These are drugs that can cause or contribute to incontinence by inducing constipation. This can result in impaction of (compacted) stool, with chronic retention of urine.
  • Bladder retraining: Bladder training is a carefully-developed schedule that teaches the body to restore a normal pattern of voiding. With bladder training, bathroom trips are scheduled close together at first, stretching to longer and longer periods to achieve the desired time intervals between voiding.
  • Continence: Continence refers to the ability to exercise voluntary control over the urge to urinate until an appropriate time and place can be found.
  • Diuretic: An agent that promotes the excretion of urine.
  • Enuresis: The involuntary loss of urine during sleep.
  • Gastroenterologist: A physician who specializes in problems of the intestinal system
  • Geriatrician: A physician who specializes in diagnosing and treating the health disorders of older people
  • Nocturia: Excessive urination at night, or awakening at night by the need to void.
  • Sphincter: A ring-like band of muscle fibers that closes a natural opening. Tightening the urethral sphincter controls the urge to urinate
  • Urgency: An intense need or desire to void immediately.
  • Void, Voiding: Urine or urination; excretion/defecation. Another word for emptying the bladder or bowel.

For more information, see related incontinence articles and resources here:

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