As a women’s health practitioner and general practitioner, I often hear about and see several conditions which most of you keep to yourselves.

One of the most common of these problems is urinary incontinence. It is often mentioned at the end of the consult as a ‘side problem’ or only declared when prompted.

We need to discuss this embarrassing problem as there are many treatments and most of these treatments are more effective if tackled early. Most women feel that the only option is surgery and this is not the case.

Sometimes the answer is simple, such as finding a solution for constipation or treating a urinary tract infection.

We also know that obesity and constipation double the chances of having urinary incontinence. So, by encouraging a good diet and regular exercise, we are not only promoting a healthy lifestyle, we are treating the incontinence. A good women’s health physiotherapist can also assist. They work with you to assist in the strengthening and training of the pelvic floor muscles which provides support for your internal organs. This is extremely important, as most of us are doing our pelvic floor muscle training incorrectly.

The assistance of a good physiotherapist to ‘coach’ you on correct technique can make a major improvement to your symptoms.

Remember by confronting the problem early you are not only reducing your chances of needing invasive treatments, but you are also learning techniques to protect yourself from a condition that can have a significant impact on your life.