Bedwetting isn’t a trial reserved for children. Millions of adults too suffer not only the embarrassment of a wet bed, but wetting their clothes, as they wage a daily battle against urinary incontinence.
Urinary incontinence means the loss of bladder control, with symptoms that range from minor to severe.
For some, urinary incontinence happens only occasionally, when they sneeze or cough or lift something heavy. For others, the urge to go to the loo can be so sudden and urgent that they won’t make it in time, wetting either their clothes or their beds. Yet others suffer from frequency, while for some, urinary incontinence means a constant dribbling of urine.
And while the shame people feel may make them feel isolated, this is certainly not an isolated condition. Across the globe, 424-million adults experience urinary incontinence. This was the number quoted in 2018 at the Global Forum for Incontinence, in a presentation made by Dr Ian Milsom from the University of Gothenburg, Sweden.
To put this number into perspective, Dr Milsom says if urinary incontinence “were a country, it would be the third largest in the world”, even larger than the United States of America.
According to Dr Milsom, just over 12% of all women – 303-million – suffer from incontinence. Of all women over 40, 30-60% of them have some degree of incontinence. When it comes to men, the incidence is lower – only 5% – but that still means 121-million men are dealing with this condition.
Half of these people, however, won’t ever seek medical help, likely because of the feelings of shame, helplessness and loss of control that sufferers often experience.
Yet in most cases, urinary incontinence is not something sufferers just have to accept and learn to live with.
WHAT CAN YOU DO ABOUT URINARY INCONTINENCE?
The short answer is “a great deal”. In the majority of cases, incontinence can be treated, and in many cases, it can be cured altogether.
From behavioural adaptations, exercises and dietary changes, to medication, medical devices and surgery, there is a lot that can be done to improve quality of life.
Treatment depends on the underlying cause of the incontinence, of which there are many. This is why the most important step to take when tackling incontinence is to seek professional medical help and get a proper diagnosis. Once the cause has been pinpointed, appropriate steps can be taken to treat it.
While working on a treatment plan with your medical practitioner, give yourself or your loved one peace of mind during the day with waterproof adult incontinence pads, and during the night with a waterproof mattress protector.
All Protect-A-Bed®’s mattress protector ranges utilise 100% waterproof Miracle Membrane, which keeps all bodily fluids from reaching the mattress. Cleaning up after night-time accidents becomes a breeze, since all Protect-A-Bed® protectors are fully machine washable and suitable for tumble-drying.
Protect-A-Bed®’s Miracle Membrane is also 100% porous to air and whisper-quiet, so the sleeper doesn’t have to compromise on a cool, comfortable sleep to get peace-of-mind protection.
SOURCES FOR FURTHER READING:
- The National Association for Continence at nafc.org, for an extensive source of incontinence education and support.
- “Urinary Incontinence”, for an overview of the condition by the Mayo Clinic, at mayoclinic.org
- “Elderly Urinary Incontinence”, which, despite its headline, covers incontinence in general, with advice on what to expect at the medical consultation.