Patient Perspective: It Doesn't Matter How Old You Are - Incontinence Is Not Normal!

Patient Perspective: Incontinence Is Not Normal

At 70 years old, you’d think that I’d have come to terms with having incontinence. But time has a way of making you see that some things you thought were normal actually weren’t at all.

The leaks started in my 50’s and at the time, I chalked it up to just growing older. I started wearing absorbent pads for protection and just went on living my life. My leaks started to get worse as I got older, and in my late 60’s I finally talked to my doctor about it. He asked me during a routine check up about my bladder habits and I told him I’d been having leaks for years. I tried to brush it off like it was no big deal (it was a bit embarrassing to talk about), but he kept pressing me, asking me more details and taking notes.

Finally, he told me that he wished I had told him about the leaks sooner, since there is so much that can be done to treat bladder leaks.  He said no one should have to live with bladder control issues and that it absolutely is NOT a normal part of aging.

I felt so foolish for having believed all those years that it was just my body breaking down, getting older. Turns out that I was able to start a medication that really helped eliminate (mostly) my accidents. And there are even more treatments besides medications that I can try if I decide to.

Now that I’ve treated my incontinence, I feel freer at 70 years old than I did when I was in my late 50’s. I only wish I had opened up about it sooner to my doctor. 

Don’t wait to talk about it. Don’t let the years pass you by living with incontinence. It’s just not worth it when so much can be done.

Abby M.,

Boston, MA

The 3 Most Important Things To Consider When Choosing An Adult Absorbent Product

The Top 3 Most Important Things To Consider When Choosing An Adult Absorbent Product

Finding the right protection for bladder leaks – for yourself, or for someone you care for – can be daunting. There are so many choices – how do you know what will work best?

When thinking about absorbent products, and ultimately, deciding on one to buy, think hard about these three things – they are the most important factors when deciding on an absorbent product.

Top 3 Things To Consider In An Adult Absorbent Product

Form.

Think about how you’ll be using this product, and what matters most to you or your loved one in terms of comfort and ease. Are you very mobile? If so, pads or absorbent briefs may work well. Are you caring for someone confined mostly to a bed, or chair, then a product with tabs may be a better option for easier removal. Consider your lifestyle and make choice that will be conducive to how you live.

Fit.

Out of all the things to consider, this is probably the most important. Finding the right fit should be your top priority since getting something too loose or too tight can lead to leaks. Different products have different sizing options so try them out and make sure that the fit feels good.

Function. 

Think about your individual leakage when deciding on an absorbent product. Do you leak mostly at night, or during the day? Do you leak large amounts of urine or just a little bit? Is your leakage problem frequent, or is it just occasional. All of these answers can weigh in to the absorbency level of the product you choose, and many manufactures make specific products for each scenario. Think about your patterns and choose accordingly.

Don’t be afraid to consult a physician, or to call an online retailer, such as Live Anew or HDIS. They have product specialists that can help you find the perfect product by asking you questions about your specific.

Incontinence: Myths VS. Truths

Incontinence Myths Vs. Truths

Incontinence affects millions of people every day— both men and women. Talking about issues like stress urinary incontinence, an enlarged prostate, or adult bedwetting isn’t something people do regularly, so there are a lot of rumors swirling around about how to manage your bladder and bowel health.

We’d like to combat the rumors and get an honest dialogue going. Let us put the myths side by side for you to review.

Myths Vs. Truths of Incontinence

Myth:  If you drink less water, you won’t have to go as often.

Truth:  Drinking enough water every day is crucial to avoiding infections and keeping your body hydrated. Drinking fewer diuretics, like coffee or tea, will help lessen the urge to go.

Myth Always buy one size larger in absorbency products.

Truth It is very important to buy the appropriate size absorbency product to avoid skin rashes, leakage, or bunching under clothes. Learn more about how to find the right type of absorbent product here.

Myth:  Incontinence just happens with old age. It’s normal!

Truth:  Incontinence isn’t necessarily indicative of old age. It’s really indicative of weak pelvic floor muscles.

Myth Going to the bathroom at night isn’t an issue until you have to go more than 3 times.

Truth:  If you go the bathroom two times or more a night regularly, you may have Nocturia. Nocturia is an overproduction of urine at night or an overproduction of urine during the daytime and nighttime.

Myth Accidentally wetting the bed is just a kid’s problem.

Truth While once thought of as something only little kids experienced, studies show that at least 2% of adults lose control of urination during the night. This is bedwetting or Nocturnal Enuresis (NE).

Myth Only women deal with incontinence. What I have is just temporary. Men don’t have problems like this.

Truth Men and women are both privy to bladder and bowel struggles. In fact, as many as 50% of men experience symptoms of an enlarged prostate by the age of 60. An enlarged prostate can interfere with the urethra, the tube inside the penis that carries urine and semen out of the body and create pressure that blocks the natural flow of urine (and semen) causing irritation. If left untreated, this condition can lead to more serious problems. 

Myth:  You don’t need to talk to your doctor about your incontinence. It will go away on its own.

Truth With more than 25 million Americans affected by either bladder control or bowel control issues, the medical community has taken note. And because incontinence is a symptom rather than a disease, the method of treatment depends on diagnostic results. Talk to you doctor to learn more about other areas of your health that may be affecting your bladder or bowel control. Click here to find the right doctor for you.

Did you learn anything new in the comparison above? Share your thoughts in the comment section or share this post to start the conversation on Facebook!