Stopping Bladder Leaks: Treatment Vs. Management
By Gloria Kolb, Founder, and CEO of ELITONE, Biomedical Engineer & Mom of 3

In this age of information, sensitive health topics that used to be a stigma and rarely talked about are now more openly discussed and long sought answers are more readily available.  But finding the right answers for you can require discernment. Research will tell you that approximately 1 in 3 women struggle with bladder leaks, or urinary incontinence, at some point in their life. Over the age of 50, that number balloons to 1 in 2 women.

But what steps those women should take next isn’t always as clear.

Incontinence Management Options

The most natural reaction for women struggling with bladder leaks might be to think, “How can I keep this under control, so I can keep on living my normal life?”  That leads to some reactive solutions such as:

  • Adult absorbent briefs
  • Bladder control pads
  • Underpads/ Bed pads

While these products certainly help manage leaks, the weekly costs of products add up, especially as the frequency and severity of the leaks increase.  There are also environmental, skin irritation, and smell considerations as well.  But crucially, the products aren’t eliminating the underlying problem.

Incontinence Treatment Options

The first thing women should understand is incontinence typically won’t get better without treatment, and often get worse.  What starts as mild incontinence and a couple of leaks a week, could progress to a more severe case and multiple pads daily to navigate. Although there are different types of incontinence, the vast majority have weak muscles that need to be strengthened.

Early treatment makes a big difference, and there are plenty of options:

  • Pelvic floor exercises: Exercises such as kegels are one of the basic recommendations for treatment. However, a quarter of women do not do them correctly, and many more consistently enough to get the intended benefit.  Effectiveness can also be hard to measure since this is an internal exercise, frustrating many women who try this option first.
  • Pelvic floor therapy:  Within office visits, a therapist will help teach you to perform these exercises correctly. Whether or not your insurance covers you for time-consuming invasive physical therapy sessions however, is a consideration as well.
  • Vaginal electrical stimulation (e-stim): This is a probe that’s inserted vaginally and stimulates pelvic floor muscles to contract. The mild electrical current from the probe does the kegel exercises for you to strengthen muscles. However, as with any internal device, there is a risk of infection, and dedicated private time is needed.
  • Surface electrical stimulation: A medical device, such as ELITONE, is a noninvasive option, similar to the effect of the vaginal E-stim. It does kegel exercises for you, more effectively and consistently than you could do them yourself.  The device can be worn under clothing anywhere for a short time. It’s also about half the cost that women spend annually on incontinence maintenance.
  • Surgery:  For obvious reasons, this is a last resort for many.  Surgeries involve implanting material to help support the bladder– but it’s an expensive and invasive option.

Finding The Best Option for You

It’s important to understand all your options on which preventative and proactive approach may be the best for you.  Muscle tone needs to be maintained, so consider which option not only is efficacious but easy to use so that it is easily maintained. Know that there are easy options that work for the millions of women out there who want to live life leak free.

By Gloria Kolb, Founder, and CEO of ELITONE, Biomedical Engineer & Mom of 3 A mom and an accomplished engineer, Gloria Kolb experienced pelvic floor issues that caused leaks/incontinence after delivering her babies. Gloria put her knowledge and experience to use and created ELITONE: the first external, EFFECTIVE treatment for female incontinence. The FDA-cleared ELITONE does not require a prescription. Learn more at


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