Dealing with Aging Parents ~ How To Cope With Incontinence In Old Age
Urinary incontinence becomes increasingly prevalent as we age. Women are affected more than men, and around the world millions of people are affected to varying degrees. The medical profession categorizes urinary incontinence into a broad number of types, but the two most common – stress incontinence and urge incontinence – account for more than 90% of cases. While many assume that urinary incontinence cannot be treated effectively, dismissing it as a sign of old age, there are many surgical, medicinal and lifestyle-based treatments that have been proven to work well.
Maintaining a healthy weight is a great first step to bringing your urinary incontinence under control. This requires a combination of a balanced, calorie-controlled diet and getting enough exercise. As we age we do not get as much exercise as we once did. Exercise that once felt easy now feels hard, and it can sometimes be tempting to give up altogether. But health professionals have seen a positive correlation between physical fitness and reducing levels of urinary incontinence. If you complete light exercise, including walking, you will feel better and it will be easier to cope with the symptoms you have been experiencing.
When you suffer from incontinence it’s important to control what you drink. Alcohol can be consumed in moderation, but it is best if it can be avoided altogether. Caffeine-based drinks should also be consumed in moderation and ideally stopped altogether. If you would really like to drink coffee or tea once or twice a day, make sure that you plan trips to the bathroom for around 15 minutes and then one hour after your drink is finished. This will reduce the risk of incontinence and give your body a chance to pass the fluids that you have consumed.
Many seniors worry about going out of the house when they are suffering from incontinence. This is an understandable concern, but there are strategies to make it much more comfortable. Firstly, consider senior incontinence products from Home Delivered. When you wear an incontinence product, nobody will notice if you urinate. Many incontinence products even cover up the odor, further reducing the chance anybody would notice. It is also a good idea to bring along a change of underwear and to plan regular bathroom breaks to reduce the likelihood of having problems when you’re out.
There are a number of surgical options to treat incontinence. Most are aimed at strengthening the muscles around the bladder and reducing bladder pressure. Usually, these are only explored after other options – including medicine and bladder training – have been exhausted.
“Urinary incontinence surgery is more invasive and has a higher risk of complications than do many other therapies, but it can also provide a long-term solution in severe cases. Most options for urinary incontinence surgery are used to treat stress incontinence. However, low-risk surgical alternatives are also available for other bladder problems, including severe urge incontinence, which is also called overactive bladder and nonobstructive urinary retention,” writes Mayo Clinic.