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Should I see a bladder doctor about my incontinence issues?

Let’s get it out in the open: nobody likes talking about incontinence! But while the conversation may feel a bit uncomfortable at first, it may help to know that you’re not alone—more than 25 million Americans are dealing with bladder control issues. We know how reluctant people can be to talk with a doctor, but we’ve also seen the simple act of seeking treatment for overactive bladder literally give people their lives back.rnrn rnrnRemember, urinary incontinence isn’t a medical condition in and of itself; it’s a sign that something in your body isn’t working. Your bladder control issues could be caused by something as simple as a medication you’re taking, or something you’re eating—or they could be the symptom of a more serious issue. But until you talk to your bladder doctor, you won’t know for sure.rnrn rnrnTo help you prepare for this important conversation, we’ve put together some of the most common questions your bladder doctor may ask you. Some of them may require you to start paying closer attention to urges, leaks and other bathroom habits. While this may not be enjoyable, it’s critical to give your bladder doctor as much data as possible—and to be as specific as you can with your answers. This will ensure an accurate diagnosis, and help your doctor find the right bladder control treatment for you.rnrn rnrnQuestions your doctor may ask you:rnrn rn

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  • How much fluid do you drink throughout the day?
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  • How often do you use the bathroom during the day?
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  • How often do you wake up to urinate during the night?
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  • How much caffeine do you consume in a normal day?
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  • How much urine do you release with each bathroom trip?
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  • Do you ever experience pain or burning when you urinate?
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  • Does your bladder feel completely empty after each voiding?
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  • If you have had accidents, how often and how did they occur?
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  • Do you suffer from constipation—how often and how serious?
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  • Have bowel or bladder control issues affected your lifestyle? How?
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rnIn the days or weeks leading up to your appointment, your bladder doctor may ask you to keep a bladder diary—this will be extremely helpful in answering the questions above. And if you’re feeling uncomfortable, try to think of this conversation as the first step toward successful bladder control treatment…and hopefully, newfound freedom.

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