Don’t suffer in silence, let our Women’s Health Physiotherapist Laura Barrett, help you get back to the activities you love

Urinary incontinence is the unintentional passing of urine. It is a very common problem, especially in women. It can occur at any age but it is more likely to develop as you get older. It is thought to affect millions of people worldwide.

There are various types of urinary incontinence, but the two main types are stress incontinence and urge incontinence.

  • Stress incontinence occurs when there is a sudden extra pressure on the bladder and the pelvic floor muscles are too weak to prevent urination. Urine will tend to leak most when you cough, laugh, or when you exercise. Weakness of the pelvic floor muscles can result from childbirth and may be exacerbated by other factors such as age, constipation, having a chronic cough and being overweight.

  • Urge incontinence is when there is an urgent desire to pass urine and it is thought to occur as a result of incorrect signals being sent between the brain and the bladder.

Many people do not tell their doctor about their incontinence, due to embarrassment. Some people wrongly think that incontinence is a normal part of ageing or that it cannot be treated. This is unfortunate, as many cases can be successfully treated or significantly improved.

A specialised assessment by our Women’s Health physiotherapist , Laura Barrett, will include a discussion on your toileting habits, your daily intake of fluids, previous pregnancies and childbirth and past medical history. Assessment may also include, with your consent, a vaginal examination to determine the strength and function of your pelvic floor muscles. Treatment of incontinence includes:

  • Personalised Pelvic floor exercise programme

  • Bladder retraining

  • Education and advice


If you are having difficulty with performing pelvic floor exercises, the physiotherapist may utilise electrical stimulation, muscle feedback (biofeedback) and specialised weights to assist in activating the pelvic floor muscles.