Manage adult incontinence:
Are you one of the four million Australians who suffers from adult incontinence? This condition can be upsetting and embarrassing, but there are plenty of resources available to help you better manage your incontinence.
If you have occasional leakage, can’t make it to the toilet in time or pass small amounts of urine frequently during the day, there are many lifestyle solutions you can consider, including:
- drinking more fluids, as dehydration causes incontinence
- limiting caffeine and alcohol, which make the body produce more urine
- eating plenty of fibre in your diet
- staying physically active and strengthening your core muscles
- maintaining a healthy body weight to avoid unnecessary pressure on the bladder
When using the toilet, there are a few habits you should adopt, including:
- waiting until your bladder is truly full
- taking your time, and not pushing urine with your pelvic floor
- not straining to open your bowels
Protective products for adult incontinence
There is a wide range of protective products on the market that can help in managing adult incontinence. These include pads for urinary or bowel incontinence, as well as the innovative Up & Under Linen & Mattress Protector, an all in one mattress protector that keeps not only your mattress but also your blankets dry. It eliminates the need to change the entire bed should leakage occur.
Keep a diary
Keep a record of your incontinence and note down any accidents and near misses, as well as your food and drink intake for the day. This will help you identify patterns or triggers and can be very helpful should you seek specialist advice.
Studies have shown that smokers are more prone to incontinence, as well as it being hugely damaging to your health in many other ways. Smoking causes tissue weakness in the bladder, increases coughing (which can trigger accidents) and has been linked to bladder cancer.
Seek medical help
Incontinence may be a challenging and embarrassing problem but plenty of expert help is available. Your GP can direct you to a kidney specialist urologist, continence nurse, physiotherapist or other specialist to investigate your unique symptoms. Speak to your doctor about your medications, as new research indicates that some medication is adding to the problem. Visit the Continence Foundation of Australia website for more information and further resources.
The general information provided in this article is provided for background purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. Seek assistance from a health care professional in applying this information to your individual and specific circumstances.