May 2014 – Managing Incontinence

Managing Incontinence

Urinary Incontinence affects twice as many women as men but it is a life limiting condition when it happens. Many people become afraid to leave their home for fear of an embarrassing accident.

Incontinence is not considered a normal part of aging. . Often, family members may decide that it is too much of an issue for them and move their loved one to a senior residence. However, it is treatable.

Incontinence Is Not A Normal Part of Aging

Incontinence is not considered a normal part of aging and usually has an underlying medical cause. Many older adults are hesitant to tell their physicians unless asked directly. Incontinence can increase the risk of falls.

Studies have been done which indicate that those who have incontinence can be circumvented from having accidents by training to go immediately after eating each meal and upon arising in the morning. If the person finds that they are re-arranging their lives for their incontinence, then it is advised that the doctor be informed so that appropriate tests can be conducted to find the source of the issue.

If the incontinence is not frequent, it may be controlled by light pads. Your doctor may suggest Kegel exercises which involve tightening the pelvic floor muscles repetitively to increase muscular control. However, if the cause is more difficult to control, there are products available that can be purchased locally or over the internet and delivered to your home. Some products come like an adult diaper; others more like a ‘brief’. There are different sizes and higher absorbency available for night wear. It is important that the person maintain cleanliness; keep dry and wear a cream barrier to keep skin from getting irritated. Some conditions may require surgery and medication. Your doctor will be the best person to advise you of what you require.

Incontinence can cause aggravation and embarrassment but it need not be life limiting. Find out what you can do to minimize the condition by contacting your physician and getting the appropriate tests. Then you will be free to think about what you want to do instead of your incontinence controlling what you are able to do.

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