We are nearing the end of summer, but there are still all kinds of activities and events taking place outdoors. During these months, managing incontinence can be difficult. Fewer articles of clothing are worn, making it tricky to make those products less visible underneath bathing suits and shorts.
According to a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) report, more than half of Americans over 65 experience some form of incontinence (either urinary or bowel). As a person ages, their risk of developing an overactive bladder increases.
Different Types of Incontinence
There are four different types of urinary incontinence:
1. Stress incontinence. This occurs when urine unintentionally leaks from the bladder when you cough, sneeze, laugh, or do any other activity that places stress on the abdomen. It is more common in women than men due to physical changes resulting from pregnancy, childbirth, and menopause.
2. Urge incontinence. An overactive bladder causes a great urgency or desire to urinate, resulting in leakage of urine that cannot be suppressed. You may find yourself suddenly needing to use the restroom but cannot make it all the way.
3. Overflow incontinence. Typically without any urge to urinate, a person will involuntarily release urine from an overfull bladder. As the kidneys continue to produce urine, the excess spills out through the urethra – similar to an overflowing dam.
4. Functional incontinence. As a result of mobility and dexterity challenges, a person will have difficulty getting to a restroom in a reasonable amount of time. The urinary and fecal body systems are working fine; however, the use of wheelchairs, Alzheimers’ disease, arthritis, or neurological conditions may affect a person’s memory or make removal of clothing difficult to use the restroom in time.
So What Can You Do?
To help manage your incontinence and ensure that it doesn’t interfere with your summer plans, there are steps you can take. Here are some of the tips that we recommend to help manage your incontinence in the summer months:
Have a Healthy Diet – Eating a well-balanced diet and getting regular exercise will help maintain a healthy weight. Being overweight makes a person more likely to experience problems with incontinence. Including products high in fiber to your diet is important for preventing constipation, which can provoke urinary incontinence.
Stay Hydrated – Everyone knows the importance of drinking plenty of fluids when the outside temperatures rise. Water is the drink of choice, always avoiding diuretic beverages such as coffee, tea, or alcohol.
Refrain from Smoking – Not only is smoking bad for your health, it directly contributes to an overactive bladder. Second-hand smoke is just as bad, aggravating incontinence symptoms by causing sneezing and coughing.
Be Prepared – Alleviate stress and anxiety by planning ahead. Pack enough wipes, pads, diapers, extra clothes, and disposal bags for soiled items.
Map Restroom Locations – Wherever you are headed, make sure you know where there are places to schedule regular (every 2-4 hours) bathroom breaks. There are convenient free bathroom locator apps to find relief near you such as SitOrSquat or Where to Wee.
Get the Right Products – Here is where we can help! Contact us to give us a call and one of our Product Experts will match you with the right products for your specific needs. Not all incontinence products are on-size-fits-all, so it is important to understand the differences and how sometimes pairing up products might make them work better for you based on your circumstance.
The summer is a time to enjoy life. Don’t let incontinence hold you back from traveling and seeing your friends and family. Take a look at the personal wipes, various types of pads, and diapers offered on our website. We can easily be your one-stop shop.