Overflow Incontinence

overflow incontinence

Overflow incontinence/dysfunctional voiding is a loss of urine due to over-filling of the bladder, because the bladder is unable to empty properly. There may be difficulty starting the flow, a weak stream, straining to empty, or a constant dribble. Repeated urinary tract infections are more likely as the bladder is not emptying well.
The bladder may be unable to empty because of an obstruction (e.g. enlarged prostate, scar tissue, constipation), or because the bladder muscle can’t work effectively enough to squeeze the urine out. Overflow incontinence can also be caused by an over-active, non-relaxing pelvic floor: relaxation of the pelvic floor muscles is necessary for the bladder to empty.
Doing Kegel exercises in this case will likely worsen symptoms: if the pelvic floor muscles are already too tense, learning to relax them – reverse Kegels – is needed.


A pelvic health assessment will identify whether your pelvic floor muscles are too tense and teach pelvic floor relaxation – reverse Kegels. Breathing exercises, and learning to coordinate the diaphragm, abdominal and pelvic floor muscles together often results in improved voiding.