What is incontinence?

Urinary Incontinence

Urinary incontinence is the loss of control of the bladder, resulting in leakage of urine and wetting. The quantity of urine loss ranges between being damp and being soaked.

Who is affected?

You are not alone: Recent research reveals nearly 1 in 4 Australians experience bladder and/or bowel control problems. Whilst incontinence affects men, women and children of all ages the prevalence of incontinence is greater in women and those aged over 70 years of age.  Please click here to find out who is affected by bladder and bowel problems.

Other continence problems?

As well as leakage, other continence problems include:

  • Frequency - going to the toilet often
  • Nocturia - waking at night to pass urine
  • Urgency - having a sudden strong urge to go to the toilet i.e. finding that ‘when you’ve gotta go, you’ve gotta go!’
  • Constipation
  • Multiple Sclerosis-(MS)

Please click here for further information on other types of incontinence.

Faecal Incontinence

Faecal incontinence is the loss of solid or liquid stools or soiling.


Prevention is as important as treatment.  With effective assessment there are many management and treatment options available that can often lead to improved quality of life. Please click here to find out what you can do to prevent bladder and bowel problems.
The good news is that over 70% of those with bladder and/or bowel control problems can be cured or made significantly better by simple measures such as:

  • Attention to diet and fluid intake
  • Specific exercises

Continence assessment

Any concern about poor bladder or bowel control should never be dismissed as “a fact of life”, "just a small problem" or "due to old age".  Incontinence deserves careful assessment by a GP, continence nurse, continence physiotherapist, or specialist.

Where do I get help?

Please click here to find out where to get further help.

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