Bowel incontinence is an inability to control bowel movements, resulting in involuntary soiling. It's also sometimes known as faecal incontinence. The experience of bowel incontinence can vary from person to person. Some people feel a sudden need to go to the toilet but are unable to reach a toilet in time. This is known as urge bowel incontinence. Other people experience no sensation before soiling themselves, known as passive incontinence or passive soiling, or there might be slight soiling when passing wind. Some people experience incontinence on a daily basis, whereas for others it only happens from time to time. It's thought 1 in 10 people will be affected by it at some point in their life. It can affect people of any age, although it's more common in elderly people. It's also more common in women than men.