Bladder Control

Urinary incontinence (UI) is loss of bladder control. Symptoms can range from mild leaking to uncontrollable wetting. It can happen to anyone, but it becomes more common with age. Women experience UI twice as often as men. Your doctor can help find the cause of a bladder control problem and let you know your options for treatment.

Factors that make you more likely to develop UI include

  • being female.

  • being older. As you age, your urinary tract muscles weaken, making it harder to hold in urine.

  • life events, such as pregnancy, childbirth, and menopause in women and prostate problems in men.

  • health problems, such as diabetesobesity, or long-lasting constipation.

  • smoking.

  • birth defects. You may have a problem with the structure of your urinary tract.

The following online resources provide access to reliable information about specific medical conditions that may be associated with bladder control issues in seniors:​

Bladder Control Problems

Information from the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases

What Is Urinary Incontinence? 

What Is Overactive Bladder?

Information from the Urology Care Foundation affiliated with the American Urological Association

Urinary Incontinence: MedlinePlus

Overactive Bladder: MedlinePlus

Enlarged Prostate (BPH): MedlinePlus