Cancer Screenings: Your Essential Guide

your essential guide to cancer screenings with a family walking on the beach

Cancer screenings can help detect cancer in the early stages or before you begin to have symptoms. By detecting cancer early, you may give yourself a better chance of surviving and thriving. Keeping up with preventive screenings that your doctor recommends is key to catching potential issues such as breast, cervical, prostate, endometrial, and colorectal cancer before they turn into something worse.

Who determines when to get screened?

Created in 1984, the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) is an independent, volunteer panel of national experts in prevention and evidence-based medicine. The Task Force works to improve all Americans’ health by making evidence-based recommendations about clinical preventive services such as screenings, counseling services, and preventive medications.

Task Force members come from a wide array of medical-related fields. That history of experience can be from primary care, internal medicine, family medicine, pediatrics, behavioral health, obstetrics and gynecology, and nursing. This team rigorously reviews existing peer-reviewed evidence to make recommendations for screenings. This process can help primary care clinicians and patients decide whether a preventive service is right for a patient’s needs.

Cancer Screening Guidelines

The following cancer screening guidelines are for people who have an average risk for cancer. If you have an increased risk due to your family history, you may need screenings earlier or more often. It would be best to speak to your doctor to see what’s right for you.

Breast Cancer Screenings

two women holding pink ribbons showing their support of breast cancer screeningsYearly mammograms are the best way to detect breast cancer’s early stages when it is easier to treat. The USPSTF recommends women to get mammograms at the following ages:

Ages 45 to 54: once every year

Ages 55 and older: once every other year

It is important to note that women with a heightened breast cancer risk should ask their doctors about the risks and benefits of an annual MRI and mammogram.

Cervical Cancer Screenings

The Pap test can find abnormal cells in the cervix, which may turn into cancer. The human papillomavirus (HPV) test looks for the virus that can cause these cell changes. The chance of being cured is very high when the Pap tests find cervical cancer early.

The USPSTF recommends women to get a Pap test at the following ages:

Ages 21 to 29: once every three years

Ages 30 to 65:

  • once every three years
  • an HPV test once every five years
  • or a Pap test and an HPV test once every five years

Women older than 65: Those with normal screenings and who do not have a high risk for cervical cancer may not need screening.

Colorectal Cancer Screenings

doctor in a lab testing cancer screening samplesThe American Cancer Society (ACS) recommends people with an average risk for colorectal cancer start regular cancer screenings at age 45. Simultaneously, the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) advises beginning screening at age 50. Those with an increased risk for colorectal cancer due to family history may need to get cancer screenings at an earlier age.

Discuss with your doctor which of the following tests are recommended by the USPSTF:

Endometrial Cancer Screenings

anatomy of the female uterus when detecting endometrial cancer in cancer screeningsEndometrial cancer forms in the lining of the uterus. By early detection and surgical removal of the uterus, endometrial cancer is often cured. After reaching menopause, women who have abnormal bleeding or spotting should tell their doctors. Your doctor may order cancer screenings to help detect endometrial cancer.

Prostate Cancer Screenings

When men reach the ages of 55 to 69, the USPSTF recommends discussing the potential benefits and risks of prostate cancer screenings with their physicians to help make informed decisions. After the age of 70, the USPSTF advises against men getting screened.

At Personally Delivered, we hope your lifelong health journey never includes a cancer diagnosis. Whatever your age or medical history, maintaining an open and close relationship with your physician will help keep track of your long-term health.

Many of these types of cancers may require the use of catheters, incontinence products, and skin care needs. These may be a temporary need or one that is long-term. We carry a wide array of these home delivery medical supplies and can help you find the ones your doctor recommends that are right for you. Our friendly, knowledgeable, and compassionate Product Experts will help make your purchasing selection as easy as possible.

All recommendations for cancer screenings and more detailed information from the USPSTF can be found directly on their site.

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Top 10 Incontinence Products for Seniors

elderly man grinning at a woman on a swing

According to research, more than 50% of elderly Americans suffer from incontinence, whether it be bladder or bowel related. Incontinence is not only a physical medical condition; it can also affect people mentally, emotionally, and financially. The cost of incontinence products for seniors can add up, and you could be caught off guard if you aren’t prepared.

We have compiled a list of what we think are the ten most useful incontinence products for seniors. Consider some or all of these incontinence supplies the next time you shop for yourself or a loved one to keep ample inventory levels on hand.

1. Briefs/Diapers

Attends Premier Briefs in a bag available in sizes medium to extra largeBecause briefs or diapers can be changed without removing all clothing articles, they are a preferred choice by many seniors. Briefs are for those needing a more secure and absorbent option and sometimes referred to as adult diapers. These one-piece incontinence garments feature re-fastenable tabs that make readjustment easy for a tight fit. Incontinence briefs also come in daytime or nighttime absorbencies depending on what level is needed. The Attends Premier Brief is an excellent incontinence product for seniors that offers both daytime and overnight protection.

2. Protective Underwear or Pull-Ups

Protective briefs or pull-ups are one-piece garments made to be easily pulled on and off and are an excellent incontinence product for seniors that are looking for more traditional and discreet protection. Offered in absorbencies for both day and night protection, protective underwear also provides odor control and moisture-wicking to remain comfortable and dry.

3. Underpads/Bed Pads/Chux

Available in various colors, materials, designs, and absorbency levels, underpads, bed pads, or chux, provide the extra protection needed to absorb leakage, reduce odors, and control bacteria. Instead of doubling up on protective underwear and mattress covers, an underpad can deliver the required absorbency on its own. Underpads can also be used to protect furniture, car seats, and even as pet potty training pads.

4. Liners/Pads

Incontinence pads and liners in a collageLiners, panty liners, or pads are placed inside regular underwear with their adhesive strip and are used for light to moderate urinary incontinence. Liners and pads are an economical incontinence product for seniors that do not have heavy leakage. On the other hand, booster pads are added to a disposable brief for an added layer of protection for those with moderate to heavy incontinence.

5. Fecal Pads

Fecal incontinence padsThe Butterfly Body Patch by Attends is an excellent fecal incontinence pad or bowel incontinence pads are designed for those who suffer from Accidental Bowel Leakage (ABL) and are looking for a bowel leakage product that absorbs fluids and odors while being discreet. Many people are unaware of such a product and resort to using a regular bladder pad for bowel incontinence protection. Those with fecal incontinence require a disposable bowel leakage product, as the use of washable products is not an option. Fecal or bowel incontinence pads such as the Butterfly Body Patch, are specifically shaped to fit in and around the buttocks and are designed to absorb liquids and hold the stool in place. These bowel incontinence products are not as absorbent as traditional incontinence pads, so they hold less fluid.

6. Mattress Cover

Using a mattress cover is another incontinence product for seniors that protects the mattress from incontinence leaks, accidental spills, and unwanted stains. Mattress covers such as the Salk Prima Vinyl Mattress Cover, fit just like a fitted bed sheet, covering the entire mattress, and can also protect against bacteria and some allergens. Mattress protectors may also defend against bacteria and some allergens. Because mattress covers are made of water-resistant materials, they extend the mattress’s life. This handy feature can also protect your health. When fluids enter the mattress’s core, bacteria breeds, and dust mites thrive in these warm, damp environments. Investing in a quality mattress cover as one of the top incontinence products for seniors can be beneficial for many reasons.

7. Skin Care

The entire area of the body covered by an incontinence product is at risk for skin irritation. If the skin has become wet or chaffed, the incontinence product either incorrectly fits the wearer or is not the right absorbency. With effective skin moisturizers, creams, and ointments, the sensitive perineal skin can stay healthy and clean.

8. Personal Care Wipes

Aloe Vesta Bathing Cloths in a pouch are perfect as a no-rinse cleansing optionWith all the personal hygiene products available, personal care wipes are the most convenient incontinence product for seniors. Using personal care wipes is not only a quicker and easier option than paper towels or cloths; they are also the most versatile cleaning product around. Wipes are compact enough for travel and an inexpensive way to keep yourself and the surfaces around you clean throughout the day.  When there isn’t a water source available, using personal care wipes can be used to quickly remove dirt and germs from the hands and face as well as a toilet paper alternative.

9. Penis Clamp

As men age, they may experience difficulty controlling their urinary leakage when lifting, coughing, or straining. They may also have leakage or dribbling of urine due to other urinary problems such as prostate cancer. A penis clamp is an incontinence product for seniors that puts light pressure on the urethra and helps control urine leaking. They are a cost-effective way to help manage stress incontinence in men and worth having around for convenience and travel.

10. Adult Swim Brief

In the summer months, enjoying the pool can be difficult for those that suffer from incontinence.  With adult swim briefs such as the Swimmates Adult Reusable Diapers, pool-time can be worry-free. These snug-fitting, stretchy, and lightweight incontinence briefs are made specifically to fit underneath a swimsuit. Adult swim briefs are also machine washable and reusable, so they are budget-friendly when choosing this kind of incontinence product for seniors.

Stocking up on the essential incontinence products for seniors is important when managing an incontinence condition. Not being prepared with the necessary incontinence supplies when you need them, most can be frustrating. You can rest easy with a little preparation, knowing that you don’t need to run out in an emergency to get the incontinence supplies you need.

For any questions about the incontinence products we carry, our Personally Delivered Product Experts are just a phone call away and ready to assist. Being prepared never felt so good!

Related Incontinence Products

Prevail Air Heavy Absorbency Briefs

Prevail Air Briefs in a bag are a heavy absorbency option

Personally Delivered Overnight Protective Underwear

Personally Delivered Overnight Protective Underwear

Cardinal Health Quilted Premium MVP Underpads, Wings

Cardinal Health Quilted Premium MVP Underpad

Hollister Extended-Wear Self-Adhesive Male External Catheter

The Hollister Extended-Wear Self-Adhesive Male External Catheter
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Superb product and good price, too. Love the convenience of having the products delivered to my home.

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Wahpeton, ND
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Toms River, NJ
The people at Personally Delivered have always been very friendly and helpful. They make it comfortable and easy to order my supplies.

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Peoria, AZ
Products are of high quality. People are very friendly and considerate. Very polite and personable. Excellent to deal with!

Daniel S.

Glen Rock, PA
Customer Service is the BEST! Your reps really care and are always finding ways to make things as easy as possible!

James S.

Cumberland, MD

A Tracheostomy: Navigating Life With One

woman sitting with a scarf covering her tracheostomy valve

You may have many questions about the future if you or a loved one has recently had a tracheostomy while in the hospital. Everyone’s experience as to why they needed a tracheostomy in the first place and what their future looks like will differ. Many people live for a long time with a tracheostomy. However, having one usually requires several adjustments to your lifestyle and careful planning to ensure adequate care.

We will discuss what a tracheostomy is, why it would be needed, ways to cope, and some standard terms associated with a tracheostomy. We hope you will find this information beneficial as you or a loved one navigates through life with a tracheostomy, whether it is a temporary or permanent solution.

What is a Tracheostomy?

An assortment of tracheostomy tubes available at Personally DeliveredA tracheostomy is an opening in the front of the neck that’s made during an emergency or planned surgery. A tube is inserted into this opening in the trachea, or windpipe, for the person to breathe. This opening makes an airway for those who cannot breathe independently or have a blockage affecting their breathing. If a disease, such as cancer, is expected to cause difficulty breathing, a tracheostomy may be needed.

The tracheostomy opening is a kind of stoma that looks similar to the lining inside of the cheek. The stoma is pink or red and will be a hole in the front of the neck. Because a tracheostomy helps someone breathe, the larynx, or voice box, remains in place.

With a tracheostomy, if a person’s lungs still function well, they breathe through the tube directly in the trachea instead of breathing through their nose and mouth. If a person’s lungs are not working correctly or are affected by a disease, assistance from a breathing machine can help push air in and out of the tracheostomy tube.

What are the Reasons For a Tracheostomy?

There are three main reasons a tracheostomy is performed:

  1. The upper airway is obstructed
  2. To remove and clean the airway from secretions
  3. To deliver more oxygen to the lungs

There are many reasons why sufficient air cannot get to the lungs, and a tracheostomy must be performed.

Airway Problems That May Require a Tracheostomy

  • Tumors in the throat or neck area
  • A large tongue or a small jaw that blocks the airway
  • Infection that causes swelling inside the trachea
  • Laryngectomy (removal of the vocal cords)
  • Tracheomalacia (collapse of the airway)
  • Vocal cord paralysis caused by nerve damage or disease
  • Blunt or severe trauma to the throat, neck, or mouth
  • Congenital abnormalities of the airway
  • Inhalation of corrosive material, smoke, or steam that burns the airway
  • Obstructive sleep apnea
  • Obstruction from a foreign body

Lung Problems That May Require a Tracheostomy

  • Chest wall injury
  • Chronic pulmonary disease – the lungs become inflamed and obstruct airflow
  • Bronchopulmonary Dysplasia – abnormal development of the lungs of infants that causes a breathing disorder and causes the need for prolonged respiratory support
  • Dysfunction of the diaphragm

Other Situations That May Require a Tracheostomy

  • Fracture of cervical vertebrae with spinal cord injury
  • Neuromuscular diseases paralyzing or weakening the diaphragm and chest muscles
  • Aspiration related to muscle or sensory problems in the throat
  • A severe allergic reaction
  • Long-term coma or unconsciousness
  • Facial surgery and facial burns
  • Other emergencies when breathing is obstructed, and emergency personnel can’t put a breathing tube through the mouth and into the trachea

Is a Tracheostomy Permanent?

A tracheostomy can be either temporary or permanent, depending on the problem being treated. If a medical issue needs to be resolved, a tracheostomy provides an alternate breathing route and is meant to be temporary. However, a tracheostomy may be the best permanent solution if a person needs to remain indefinitely connected to a ventilator.

If the plan is for a tracheostomy to be temporary, the length of time it is left in place depends on why it was done and how long that problem will take to get better. For example, if a patient needs help from a breathing machine, the issue that caused the tracheostomy will need to heal or be fixed before the tracheostomy can be removed. If the tracheostomy was done due to a blockage, injury, or disease, the tube would probably be needed for an extended period. A tracheostomy could be in place for the rest of the patient’s life if part of the trachea is required to be removed or if it doesn’t get better. The hole may close and heal on its own, or it can be closed surgically.

What to Expect After Tracheostomy Surgery?

After tracheostomy surgery, several days will be spent in the hospital as your body heals. Learning skills necessary for maintaining and coping with your tracheostomy during this time are essential.

While you are in the hospital:

  • Learn how to care for your tracheostomy tube. Cleaning and changing your tracheostomy tube helps prevent infection and reduces the risk of complications. Your team of nurses will help train you on how to care for your tracheostomy tube.
  • You may need help speaking. A tracheostomy usually prevents speaking because exhaled air goes out of the tracheostomy opening rather than through your voice box. Speaking with the tube in place is dependent on the type of tube, the width of your trachea, and the condition of your voice box. A speech therapist or trained tracheostomy care nurse will discuss options for communicating and help you learn to use your voice again.
  • Eating will be difficult. Swallowing will be difficult after a tracheostomy. You will receive nutrients through an intravenous (IV) line, a feeding tube that passes through your mouth or nose, or a tube inserted directly into your stomach. It may take some time and patience to regain the muscle strength and coordination needed for swallowing.
  • Discuss ways to cope with dry air. After a tracheostomy, the air you breathe will be much drier because it no longer passes through your moist nose and throat before reaching your lungs. You may experience episodes of coughing or excess mucus coming out of the tracheostomy. Secretions can be loosened by putting small amounts of saline directly into the tracheostomy tube. Having a humidifier or vaporizer in the room can also be beneficial, as they add moisture to the air.

When you get home:

  • Get plenty of rest. Getting enough sleep will help you recover and remember not to overdo it.
  • Plan for time off work. Depending on the type of work you do, plan on taking about two weeks off. Even if you work from home, focus on your healing, and take it easy. You never know how you will feel and what health issues may arise once you get home.
  • Fit in a little exercise. Try to get in a walk each day. Start slow and work your way up to longer times. Avoid anything strenuous like running or lifting weights. Walking is best and boosts blood flow, which helps prevent constipation and pneumonia.
  • Bathe carefully. Stick to bathing in a shallow bathtub and try to avoid splashing water into your trach. You can also try showering, but aim the stream away from your tracheostomy. Bacteria can quickly enter the tracheostomy, and you don’t want to get an infection. It would be best if you did not swim with a tracheostomy.

Diet

  • Cardinal Health suction canister for those with a tracheostomyEating. You should be able to eat without a problem, but if food or liquid gets into your tracheostomy tube, suction it out right away. It is helpful to sit up while you eat. The suction canister kit by Cardinal Health is an excellent option for this.
  • Drinking. Staying hydrated is also very helpful, so try to make sure your fluid intake is sufficient.
  • Regular bowel movements may be off. It is common to experience irregular bowel movements after surgery. Taking a fiber supplement or mild laxative may help move things along. However, if you have not had a bowel movement after a couple of days, you will need to contact your doctor.
  • Your stomach may become upset. If your stomach is upset, try bland, low-fat foods like plain rice, broiled chicken, toast, and yogurt.

What Kind of Food Can You Eat With a Tracheostomy?

An assortment of Thick-It ready-to-serve puree dishes available at Personally DeliveredEating and swallowing patterns are usually not affected by having a tracheostomy. When you get your tracheostomy tube, you may be first started on a liquid or pureed diet. Once the tracheostomy tube is switched for a smaller size, swallowing is more comfortable. If there is a concern that your swallowing is impaired, nutrients will be administered through IV (an intravenous catheter placed in a vein) or a feeding tube.

Once you have healed from surgery, your doctor will inform you when it is safe to advance your diet to take in solids and liquids by mouth. At this time, a speech therapist will also help you learn how to swallow with a tracheostomy tube.

Certain factors may make swallowing difficult, such as:

  • Not having eaten for an extended period
  • Changes in the structure of your airway
  • The health condition that caused the tracheostomy in the first place

Tips for Eating and Swallowing

Here are a few tips that may help with swallowing problems:

  • Make sure to suction the tracheostomy tube before eating to prevent coughing while eating that could lead to throwing up.
  • If your tube has a cuff, ensure the cuff is deflated when you are getting ready to eat for easier swallowing.
  • Sit up as straight as possible when you eat.
  • Take small bites, chew food thoroughly, and swallow before taking another bite.
  • Keep mealtimes relaxed by planning them so that you are not in a hurry. Turn the tv off and put your cell phone away.

Common Terms Associated With a Tracheostomy?

Having a tracheostomy procedure done on you is a scary and life-changing event. However, it is a necessary procedure that will save your life. Thus, it is essential to know these terms and have an idea of terms that you will hear once you’ve had this procedure done.

Trach Tube – The tracheostomy tube or trach tube is a tube that is inserted into the trachea to provide a channel for air to pass through

Inner Cannula – A tracheostomy may or may not have an inner cannula, a liner that can be locked into place and then unlocked so it can be removed and cleaned.

Cuffed and Uncuffed Tracheostomy Tube – The cuff is a seal that inflates inside the trachea to block air from leaking around the tube. It forces all air going in and out of the lungs to go through the tube and stops saliva and other liquids from accidentally reaching the lungs.

  • A cuffed tube is often used when a patient is on a ventilator or needs help from a breathing machine. The healthcare team monitors the cuff pressure, and adjustments are made to the breathing machine as needed.
  • Uncuffed tubes are used for patients who do not need a ventilator or help from a breathing machine. With an uncuffed tube, some air can still flow around the tube and up through the trachea to the larynx.

Trach Cover – To prevent dust and dirt from accumulating, the trach tube is kept protected using a trach cover.

Trach Tube Holder, Collar, or Tie – Any of these three terms are used to describe devices that hold the tracheostomy tube in place. A trach tube holder or trach tube collar has a firmer hold while trach ties can be adjusted and are cheaper.

Purple Passy-Muir Low-Profile Tracheostomy and Ventilator Swallowing and Speaking ValvePassy Muir Valve – The Passy Muir valve helps the patient speak more normally and goes on the outside opening of the tracheostomy tube. It opens when air is breathed in and closes when air is breathed out. The Passy valve is also called a Passy-Muir speaking valve.

Stoma Shield Cover – The stoma shield cover is an essential protective device that guards the tracheostomy hole against water during showers.

Trach Heat Exchanger – This device heats and humidifies the air that comes into the trachea. A trach heat exchanger is an expensive approach to coping with dry air after tracheostomy surgery.

Tracheostomy Cleaning Tray – This is a single-use kit that includes everything needed to clean and prep the whole tracheostomy system. A complete tracheostomy tray should include latex gloves, gauzes, and other essential materials used to clean the entire system. It is a single-use kit.

Whether you’ll be having a tracheostomy temporarily or for life, it is essential to become acclimated with these devices to maintain yourself. Try to ask as many questions as possible while you are in the care of your doctor and nurses to help get as much information as possible before you head home.

For questions related to the tracheostomy supplies we carry, our Personally Delivered Product Experts are just a phone call away and ready to help.

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Caregivers During a Pandemic: Can COVID-19 Spread Through Urine?

two people holding hands for comfort

We are at a point in the coronavirus pandemic where every American has been impacted in some way. With no clear end in sight, it is important that everyone looks at their circumstances and protects themselves and their families as best as they can. Personally Delivered works to provide caregivers all the products they need to offer the best care possible. It is vital that during the coronavirus pandemic caregivers take extra precautions as they are at a higher risk of infection than most people. There is an increased risk of contracting COVID-19 because they need to come in close contact with the person they care for. Many caregivers are also curious if their risk level is higher due to contact they may have with the bodily secretions of the person they care for.

Be Prepared to Protect Yourself and Others

If you or someone you love is taking care of someone with fecal or urinary incontinence, it’s important to understand the steps to protect the caregiver and the person they are providing care for during these uncertain times. With new data coming out at a rapid rate, medical experts agree that the highest likelihood of COVID-19 transmission remains through airborne droplets via coughing, sneezing, or breathing. Most experts agree that transmission risk is low through urine or the stool but it is still something that should be avoided. In addition to the purchase of typical incontinence supplies, it is important to be stocked up with disposable gloves, which can be changed after each contact with a vulnerable person. A collage of incontinence products Personally Delivered offers that caregivers tend to use with their patients

Pay Attention to Mental Health

A female caregiver speaking and listening with an elderly woman as they sit on a couchIn addition to caring for the physical needs of a person with incontinence during the pandemic, it’s vital that caregivers pay close attention to the mental health of a vulnerable person. A person who knows they are at a higher risk is more likely to experience anxiety and fear throughout the pandemic. The best thing a person can do is keep the lines of communication open and ensure that the person always has all the incontinence supplies they should need readily available.

Watch Stress Levels Associated With Incontinence

Additional stress can lead to more severe issues with incontinence. Many people with overactive bladder syndrome also suffer from some form of anxiety. It is pivotal that caregivers take the mental health of the person they care for as seriously as the physical. Ultimately, the most important thing a caregiver can do for the person they care for is to ensure that they are taking every precaution to avoid infection in their own lives. Once a person takes care of themselves, they can work on providing the best care possible to others.

If you are a caregiver and have any questions related to the incontinence supplies we offer to help protect you and the person you are providing care for during these uncertain times, our Personally Delivered Product Experts are just a phone call away and ready to help.

We care about you, your safety, and your health during this questionable and concerning time. That is why we make it easy for you to shop online with us and avoid the stores. Make sure you check out our Automatic Delivery Program and never worry about running out of your home delivery medical supplies again!

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Treatment Options for Urinary Incontinence

icon of person holding their urine

Urinary incontinence is an issue that affects millions of Americans and, much like other conditions, it tends to vary in terms of both cause and severity. Because of this, there are a wide range of treatments that are suggested to help depending on the underlying cause, type of incontinence an individual is experiencing, and severity of the issue at hand. Doctors will typically suggest conservative treatments that do not involve surgeries first and, for this reason, we wanted to provide an overview of non-invasive treatment options that are utilized to treat urinary incontinence in men and women.

Behavioral Techniques & Pelvic Floor Muscle Exercises

woman practicing Kegel exercises on a floor mat

Bladder control training is often suggested as a non-invasive way to treat urinary incontinence. For example, pelvic muscle exercises (Kegel exercises) can be utilized to gain better control over the muscles that you use to stop urination. Timed voiding is another type of bladder control method where an individual urinates on a set schedule. Over time, one can begin extending the time between their trips to the bathroom.

Lifestyle changes may also be suggested as a way to help alleviate some of the symptoms of incontinence. Reducing caffeine intake by eliminating or reducing the consumption of tea, coffee, and cola can prove effective for some individuals due to caffeine’s status as a diuretic. Other lifestyle changes that may be suggested for treating incontinence consist of losing weight, altering the amount of fluid consumed daily, and avoiding alcohol.

Electrical Stimulation

For electrode stimulation to treat urinary incontinence, electrodes are inserted into the rectum or vagina as a means to stimulate and strengthen the pelvic floor muscles.  Stress and urge incontinence can often be treated with gentle electrical stimulation, but it is possible that an individual will need several months of treatment for the best efficiency.

Medications

woman holding a bunch of pills that can contribute to urinary incontinence symptomsMedications may also be recommended by your doctor to treat incontinence and often work by relaxing the bladder muscle. For example, anticholinergics such as tolterodine, darifenacin, solifenacin, trospium, fesoterodine, and oxybutynin can help with urge incontinence by calming an overactive bladder. Mirabegron can also be used to help with urge incontinence and works by relaxing the bladder muscle to allow it to increase the amount of urine it can hold. For women, hormone treatment via local vaginal/urethral estrogen therapy can prove helpful as a treatment for incontinence after menopause. The treatment can improve the health of the vaginal walls, urethra, and bladder neck which can alleviate symptoms of irritative bladder and incontinence.

Incontinence Pads and Catheters

urinary incontinence product collageIn cases where treatments cannot completely alleviate symptoms of incontinence, products such as incontinence pads can be used to assist with leaking urine. There are a wide range of absorbent incontinence pads and other protective garments on the market that can be found online, and at pharmacies and supermarkets, making them a simple option for combatting drips. Urinary catheters are another equally viable option that collects urine into a bag outside the body via a tube from the bladder through the urethra.

Treating your urinary incontinence symptoms can greatly help your quality of life. It is important to enjoy your activities without being troubled by leaks and other urinary problems. For any questions related to the incontinence products we supply, one of our Personally Delivered Product Experts will be happy to help. We are just a phone call away!

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Underpads for Dogs and All Their Uses

Underpads and bed pads are for dogs, too

So you have a new addition to the family… a dog! This can be an exciting and fun time, but now the potty training begins. Or maybe you already have another furry friend in the home that has already been housebroken and have no more need for all of those potty pads stored in the closet. Whatever the case may be, those underpads for dogs can be used in a variety of ways whether they’re for potty training or otherwise.

Underpads, Chux, and Bed Pads

Disposable underpads are sometimes referred to as bed pads or chux and are typically square-shaped. Available in a variety of absorbencies and sizes, these underpads or chux feature an absorbent zone on the tope and can have a cloth-like or plastic backing. They are fantastic for dog potty training purposes, but can also have many other practical uses around the home, office, or vehicle for both you and your dog.

Uses for Chux, and Bed Pads, and Underpads for Dogs

City Living

Chicago river in the middle of the cityIf you live in a large city where apartment lifestyles are common, immediate access to a backyard to allow your dog to relieve him or herself may not be possible. Using underpads, bed pads, or chux to train your dog inside can be a lifesaver. If you are crate-training your canine, these underpads for dogs can be used as a liner. This will make cleanup and disposal easy and convenient.

Placemats and Protecting Floors

Placing a smaller underpad beneath food and water bowls can help save hardwood floors or carpeting from spills or messy eaters. Cleanup is easy and your floors will stay dry. An underpad placed at the entryway to the home can be a  great way to dry off your pet’s paws after a walk outdoors and keep the rest of your flooring clean.

Protect Your Clothing

Puppies are prone to accidents, especially when they get excited. Older canines that are experiencing urinary incontinence may also occasionally leak when they jump up on you. Also, some dogs shed their hair more than others. Using underpads to protect your clothing from leaks and shedding hair is a great way to put those underpads to use.

Furniture and Car Seats

two children dressed in yellow outfits sitting together on a chairUnderpads, bed pads, and chux can also be used to protect furniture from spills, soil, or other unexpected accidents. Whether you have a child that likes to take their snacks to the family room, need to eat a meal on-the-run in your car, or driving your dog back from a rainy day at the park, underpads can save your furniture and vehicle from getting ruined.

Surgery, Sickness, & Veterinarian Visits

dog lying on surgery table getting an i.v. for surgeryAfter a procedure at the veterinarian, a dog can experience incontinence and sickness. While a dog is recovering, underpads can be used as added protection to help absorb any leaks or fluid drainage from the surgical site as well as contain any vomit if they happen to get sick. Visits to the veterinarian are sometimes stressful and an unexpected accident can result.

Grooming at Home

If you groom your pooch at home, underpads can be used to catch all of the hair below your dog, making cleanup quick and easy.

Donate Unused Underpads, Bed Pads, or Chux

If you would like to help others in need, including pets and humans alike, unused underpads can be taken to a variety of places that accept incontinence products and can put them to good use such as the following:

  • U.S. Diaper banks
  • Local animal shelter
  • Humane society
  • Senior citizen’s center
  • Homeless shelter
  • Salvation Army or Goodwill
  • Place of worship
  • Assisted living community

As you can now see, underpads, bed pads, and chux have many more uses than just absorbing leaks from incontinence. These home delivery incontinence products help protect your flooring, clothing, car seats, bedding, and furniture. Just because your canine has graduated from potty training or a family member has overcome their incontinence problem, doesn’t mean those incontinence underpads for dogs need to go to waste. The underpads, bed pads, and chux we carry at Personally Delivered can help with almost any situation.

For questions about any of the underpads, chux, or bed pads we carry at Personally Delivered, give us a call. Our Product Experts are just a phone call away and always happy to help!

dog peeking over a counter
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Tips for Traveling with Incontinence

tips for traveling with incontinence showing woman with a backpack on rolling her luggage through airport
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Traveling with incontinence can be challenging and it is slowly starting to pick up again since the Coronavirus pandemic started. Restaurants, shopping centers, and tourist attractions have started to welcome people in again. Many have been cooped up in their homes for months and have a strong desire to get out and visit friends and family, go on a well-deserved vacation, or appropriately celebrate the holidays. This often involves a certain amount of travel, whether it’s by car or plane. Besides the fear some of us have about the safety of flying with many other people in close proximity or traveling by car and having to use a public restroom, there’s another obstacle that some people have to deal with while traveling: incontinence. The thought of having an accident when in the car or flying can be stressful, but with a little preparation, your travel plans don’t have to be ruined.

Here are some tips to make traveling with incontinence manageable.

Map Out Restrooms

If you are traveling by plane, you can get access to the particular airport’s layout simply by searching on Google. Many layouts are printable to take along with you. When booking your flight, also think about choosing an aisle seat. Once you are on the plane, you’ll have better access to the restroom without disrupting any of the other passengers.

Should you be traveling by car, try to identify where the rest stops are along your route. Think about how you will be sedentary for long periods of time and the length of time you usually have between releasing the contents of your bladder. Starting a Bladder Journal a few weeks prior to your travels can come in handy.

You can use Google to map out your rest stops. Here is a quick video tutorial on how to do that.

Pack Enough Incontinence Supplies

Diapers, Protective Underwear, & Pads

Personally delivered daytime protective underwear, an incontinence pad, and a bed padYou’ll want to pack a sufficient amount of incontinence supplies such as diapers, protective underwear, and pads when traveling with incontinence. Choosing a variety of incontinence products with different absorbencies can be a good idea to cover whatever kind of incontinence episodes you may run into. Underpads, bed pads, or chux, can also be beneficial in the car to protect the seat from an unexpected accident.

Disposable Bags

Packing enough disposable bags is important to keep embarrassing odors away when traveling with incontinence. The soiled incontinence products can easily be disregarded at one of the many rest stops on your car route or in one of the public restrooms at the airport if you are traveling by plane.

Hand Sanitizer

Maintaining cleanliness is an important part of good hygiene, especially during the Coronavirus pandemic. Hand sanitizer kills harmful germs that can cause viruses and is an easy item to get as a travel size. When traveling with incontinence, it is a good idea to keep hand sanitizer accessible at all times. Moisturizing hand sanitizer in a pump bottle

Personal Care Wipes

Personal care wipes are versatile hygiene products to keep the whole family clean. They are an inexpensive way to stay clean and are conveniently packaged to take with you on the go.

Personal care wipes can be used in a variety of ways such as:

  • Wiping your face free of food, sweat, or makeup.
  • Cleaning dirt and grime from your hands.
  • As a substitution for toilet paper. Note: Only flush wipes that are marked as ‘flushable’
  • To disinfect a variety of surfaces such as doorknobs, steering wheels, toilet seats, and more.

Spare Clothes

Packing spare clothes that are easily accessible is a good idea just in case there is an incontinence accident or the airline loses your luggage. You’ll want to be able to either reach for these spare clothes in the car or have them in your carry-on bag on the plane. Having an unexpected incontinence episode and not being prepared can cause embarrassment. You never know what kind of an incontinence episode you might have, so preparing for an entire change of clothes from head-to-toe can be wise.

You’ll want to make sure you pack these extras:

  • Longsleeve or shortsleeeve shirt
  • Shorts or long pants
  • Socks
  • Underwear, boxers, or boxer briefs
  • Shoes

A Backpack or Duffle Bag

To stay organized and carry all of these essentials, you’ll want a large enough bag to accommodate everything. Keep in mind the size limitations if you are traveling by plane. If you are traveling by car, try to keep it somewhere easily accessible and not in the trunk. You may not be near one the rest stops on your route when you have an emergency.

Consider Catheterization

Before your travels, you might consider speaking to your doctor about the different types of catheters that are offered as an additional tool to help manage incontinence while traveling. Some catheters are inserted to empty the bladder and then immediately removed, while others can be left in for a few days or even weeks. Men are given another option that is convenient and non-invasive called a condom catheter. This type of catheter is worn externally to treat incontinence in men and can be worn for several hours between emptying the collection bag.

Talking with your doctor about considering catheterization as an option while traveling with incontinence should be done well in advance of your travels. It may take some time to learn how to properly use the recommended catheter in order to become familiar with the new routine.

Bonus Tip for Packing

Packing healthy snacks will help you avoid the sugary convenience store foods on the road or expensive airport snacking options. Not only are healthy snacks better for you, but they can also help prevent your bladder from getting aggravated.

mixed nuts

Some of the healthy snacks you might pack are:

  • Baby carrots
  • Fruits like apples, bananas, oranges, and grapes
  • Protein bars (look for natural ingredients and low sugar)
  • String cheese
  • Mixed nuts (watch the salt!)
  • Dark chocolate
  • Tuna and crackers

Don't Let Traveling With Incontinence Ruin Your Plans

If travel with incontinence makes you unsettled, especially during the Coronavirus pandemic, planning ahead can make all the difference. With a little preparation and the proper incontinence products, you’ll be able to rest easy and enjoy your travels. Getting away and spending genuine time with family and friends will far outweigh the stress involved with managing incontinence.

For questions related to any of the home delivery incontinence supplies we offer, contact us or give us a call and one of our Personally Delivered Product Experts will be happy to speak to you. Incontinence can be manageable whether you are at home, work, or traveling and we can help!

How to Best Help Children Dealing with Incontinence Due to Autism

multi-colored puzzle pieces representing the challenges of autism as the blog cover for children with autism dealing with incontinence

April is National Autism Awareness Month. One of the common challenges for children who are on the autism spectrum is that they deal with issues with incontinence. Apart from offering the best incontinence products on the market today, we wanted to provide some different tips and tricks for parents looking to help their child who is struggling with incontinence due to autism.

two boys holding controllers playing a video gameAutism can delay the speed at which a child is able to be properly toilet train. It’s also possible that a child with autism may struggle to properly communicate when they need to visit the restroom, which can lead to accidents. Kids have a lot of distractions. And whether it be a video game or a television program, children with autism will often be distracted by stimulating activities, which causes them to not notice the urge to visit the restroom. The good news for parents is that children who simply don’t take the necessary steps when they have the urge to urinate or defecate have what is called functional incontinence. Involuntary incontinence is much more difficult to overcome.

The best thing a parent can do for their autistic child struggling with incontinence is to be supportive. It’s no one’s fault and it’s certainly not something that a child should be punished for. Parents need to stay patient and offer reassurance while teaching their children. One of the best teaching tools for children with autism is often a reward system of sorts. Resistance to changing patterns is typical for autistic children. Every parent should look to personalize the rewards to their child’s interests. The more rewards are offered, the fewer home delivery for incontinence supplies orders should be needed down the road.

outdoor sign that points with an arrow to where the men's and women's restrooms are located in a parkEvery parent should help their child by staying prepared. This means having a game plan for every event. Whether it’s traveling on a vacation or just heading to a playground, a parent should have plenty of incontinence products with them. Another way to stay prepared is to take note of normal bathroom routines. Routines can help reduce the number of accidents as a parent can ask their child to try the bathroom during defined time periods. Sometimes, all it takes is reminding a child that their activity will be there when they get back to remove them from the activity and have them visit the bathroom.

Every bathroom trip can come with sensory triggers for children with autism. Parents should take the time to notice things like how loud the toilet flushes and how that could impact their child’s behavior. Something as simple as adjusting the brightness of the lights in the room may make the bathroom a more comfortable place for a child with autism.

little girl in yellow dress eating dessert with her motherFinally, there are dietary steps that can be taken, which will help children with their incontinence. Diet will go a long way towards keeping a child’s movements on a routine. The more a child can stick with a routine, the more likely they are to avoid accidents and utilize fewer incontinence supplies over time.

For questions about any of the incontinence products we offer at Personally Delivered, please contact us and one of our friendly Personally Delivered Product Experts will be happy to help.

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Behavioral Changes for a Better Bladder

We take great pride in offering the very best incontinence supplies on the market today. Our incontinence supplies are offered to help our customers live happier, healthier lives. A lot of happiness comes from a sense of comfort. Unfortunately, lack of bladder control can often cause a lack of confidence. Fortunately, there are behavioral changes that can be made that can provide some relief and help with better bladder health.

What Causes an Overactive Bladder?

When the muscles of the bladder begin to involuntarily contract, a sudden urge to urinate comes about, whether or not your bladder is full. Feeling the need to use the toilet more often than normal during the day or noticing that you need to urinate several times throughout the night suggests that you might be suffering from an overactive bladder.

So how does a person end up with an overactive bladder? There are some neurological conditions that affect the transmitted signals between the bladder muscle and the nerves such as Parkinson’s disease, a stroke, or Multiple Sclerosis. However, suffering from diabetes, a spinal cord injury, or a birth defect can also be conditions that can lead to an overactive bladder because of nerve damage.

How Diet Affects an Overactive Bladder

The first behavioral change a person can make to improve their overactive bladder is to make some minor dietary changes. Many people who suffer from an overactive bladder don’t realize that they are doing more harm than good by drinking their morning cup of coffee or enjoying a sugary treat for dessert. Different people have different bladder triggers, so it’s important for each person to listen to their body and discuss their symptoms with their doctor. A great habit to start is keeping a Bladder Journal. Track food and drink intake and notate how your body reacts to different foods.

The most common trigger foods and drinks include:

  • Alcohol
  • Coffee
  • Chocolate
  • Sodas
  • Citrus Juices
  • Spicy and Acidic Foods
  • Tomatoes

nutritional items that can aggravate and overactive bladder

collage of coffee mug, brownies, tomatoes, and alcoholic beverages

Pelvic Floor Exercise May Prevent Leaks

After diet, it’s important that a person with an overactive bladder regularly exercises. Exercise not only helps tone muscles and manage weight; it also contributes to better bladder health. The more overweight a person is, the more likely they are to be impacted by leaks. While all exercise is helpful, the most important exercises for those who suffer from incontinence are those that strengthen the pelvic floor. Talking with a physical therapist can show a person what it takes to strengthen their pelvic floor so that they can retain urine in their bladder for longer periods of time.

Coughing, sneezing, and laughing can all cause leakage. Coughing fits caused by smoking are common, so while it’s important to quit smoking for a number of reasons, it’s certainly important to stop smoking for anyone who battles urinary incontinence.

Keeping a Bladder Journal Can Help

In reference to the bladder diary mentioned earlier, it can be used to help a person that is attempting to retrain their bladder. The first step of retraining the bladder is creating benchmarks.  If you urinate every hour, you have your benchmark. The first goal can be every hour and 10 minutes and it can continue to progress in increments. When the urge to go hits, a person can try different breathing techniques to relax until the urge passes and they can reach a restroom.  When a goal is achieved for more than one week, the timing goal can be extended. The more a person practices, the better their overactive bladder systems will be.

We’ve provided a sample Bladder Diary that you can download and save or print for your convenience to help you on your journey to better bladder health.

bladder diary to help with overactive bladder page 1 bladder diary to help with overactive bladder page 2

collage of various incontinence productsMaking a few changes and talking to your doctor can really help if you suffer from an overactive bladder.  If you have any questions about the incontinence supplies we offer, please give us a call and one of our Product Experts would be happy to guide you through our selections. We carry everything from liners and pads to briefs and underpads that range from light to heavy leakage protection. Whatever your needs are to manage your overactive bladder or help you along the way to better bladder health, we are sure to have the incontinence supplies you need!

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Staying Active Over the Holidays

woman's calves with pink gym shoes walking on a pathThe holidays are about celebrating with our families and that usually involves a lot of food, sugary beverages, desserts, and often sitting around inside our homes. The weather is colder and the thought of outdoor activities might not be the first thing on our minds. For some, that may be difficult due to age or the need to use an assistive device such as a wheelchair or cane.

A lot of us give up our regular routines around the holidays and end up feeling guilty about not maintaining a healthy and active lifestyle. We may tell ourselves that we are allowed this cheat time and will get back to that schedule once the celebrations are over. Sometimes this leads to untimately not picking that routine back up and ending up in an inactive and unhealthy lifestyle.

Holiday Excercise Tips

Plan Short Workouts

Roasting a turkey? Baking a pie? Use this time to create a quick workout that you could do right in your home. If you have stairs you could take a few trips up and down to get your heart rate up. Those that have a home gym or treadmill might incorporate a simple workout when you have an opportune time while food prepping. There are also short fitness videos or apps on your phone that you might try while you wait for company to arrive.

BONUS: Think outside the box. If you have canned goods and water bottles, do a few reps lifting those overhead or doing some lateral raises.

Get the Family Engaged

group of disabled men and a woman drinking beer and playing outdoor gamesAfter everyone has eaten and their stomachs are full, instead of heading to the couch to either pass out or watch football, round everyone up and head outside. Everyone could go to the backyard, a park, or even sledding if weather permits. There are plenty of outdoor games such as cornhole, badminton, tag, or even hide and seek. If there is a basketball court nearby, that is another option. When everyone is involved, it can be an afternoon of family bonding while burning some of those calories from the feast!

Take a Walk

Put on some comfortable shoes and go for a walk. Walking is a low-impact exercise that has many benefits. Not only does it get the heart pumping, but is a less strainful physical activity. Go for a stroll around the neighborhood and take in the fresh air. Walking can also be one of those short workouts while you wait for a casserole to bake.

BONUS: If you have a family dog, this would be a great time to have them accompany you.

Park the Car Further Out

When you are out shopping for food or gifts this time of year, consider parking in a spot that is farther away from the store entrance. This will ensure that you will have a decent distance to walk and you can rack up those steps on your fitness tracker.

Don't Let Incontinence Stop You

If you suffer from incontinence, you may be worried about being active and are also concerned about involuntary episodes while you’re around family and friends this time of year. There are plenty of things that you can do during the holidays to allow you to stay involved and enjoy every moment.

Watch Your Fluids

Although drinking water before a meal may help you to avoid overeating during the season, if you have urinary incontinence, you might want to slightly hold back from consuming too much and too often. Try to stay properly hydrated, but limit the amount of alcohol and caffeine you’re consuming, especially when you are going to workout. You are more likely to have an accident if your bladder is irritated from the caffeine.

Empty Your Bladder Often

Prior to heading out for a walk, beginning an activity with family, or doing a short exercise while your turkey is in the oven, be mindful of emptying your bladder instead of trying to hold it. This will help to avoid any strain on the bladder and may help to lessen any leakage while trying to enjoy your day.

Use Protective Products

assortment of incontinence productsAs with any type of incontinence, using the right protective hygiene products is key. For light to moderate urine loss, pantie liners, pads, and male guards should be used. Moderate to heavy urine loss calls for either a belted undergarment, pull-on, or tab brief. You’ll feel more confident and secure when you are being active if you are properly protected.

BONUS: Wear loose-fitting black pants! In the event that you have a leak, black can help hide the evidence and the loose-fit of the clothing can also help hide the extra protection you are wearing.

The most important thing that you can do around the holidays is focus on enjoying all the moments with the ones you love. Take it easy on yourself and know that you are not able to control everything that happens. With a few of these tips, we hope that you can try not to veer too far away from your normal routine and remain active all through the holidays.

For more information on any of the products we offer if you suffer from incontinence, please give us a call or contact us now and one of our Product Experts would be happy to help.

BONUS: Save $5 now on your first order of $30 or more by cicking HERE. Keep checking back for even more savings throughout the coming year.

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