Is It Normal To Leak Urine When I Laugh?

Posted on: 7th Jun, 2024


We’ll make this short and to the point: No, it’s not normal to leak urine when you laugh or cough. It’s an indication of a loss of control over the muscles that are responsible for holding in urine, known as the pelvic floor muscles. These muscles, along with other structures in the urinary system, work together to maintain urinary continence.

Pelvic Floor Muscle Loss

When you laugh or cough, there can be an increase in intra-abdominal pressure. Normally, the pelvic floor muscles contract, or already have enough resting tone, to prevent the leakage of urine during these moments of increased pressure. However, if these muscles are weakened or damaged, they may not be able to effectively support the bladder and urethra, leading to urinary leakage.

Several factors can contribute to weakening of the pelvic floor muscles, including pregnancy and childbirth, aging, obesity, chronic coughing, certain medical conditions, radiation, and certain types of surgery. It’s important to note that while occasional mild leakage happens a lot to some people, especially under certain circumstances like pregnancy or after childbirth, significant or frequent leakage is not considered normal and is not something you have to put up with. Doctors call this type of incontinence “stress incontinence,” and there are good treatments for it.

Urge Incontinence

Over time, some people develop another type of incontinence called “urge incontinence,” in which more sudden urges to empty the bladder don’t leave enough time to get to the bathroom. Sometimes the whole bladder will empty just when getting up from a chair.

People put up with both of these types of incontinence, buying diapers to manage the symptoms and suffering in silence. But excellent treatments for all types of incontinence have become very effective with newer technology. Painless solutions exist today that are covered by Medicare and commercial insurance plans, so ask your doctor. In northern Nevada, the team here at The Continence Center of Nevada Surgical is happy to answer your questions. Contact us today to learn more about effective treatments for incontinence, and never worry about leaking urine when you laugh again.

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