Incontinence happens to men and women. You're at risk of incontinence as you age. The condition is caused by a weak sphincter, bladder muscles that are too strong, prostate issues, urinary tract infections, kidney or bladder stones, and numerous other conditions.
If you want to stop incontinence, you can take use these four tips for help:
1. Maintain a Healthy Weight
If you're overweight, this can lead to incontinence. This is more of a concern for women than it is men. The general consensus among doctors is that the pelvic floor muscles are under more stress when a woman is heavy, causing the pelvic floor to weaken.
Anyone who is overweight may be able to find relief by simply losing weight.
There are a lot of great resources to help you along on your journey, including:
You'll find apps, local gyms and even meetup groups that you can join to help you lose weight. If you start today, you may be able to improve or eliminate your incontinence completely.
2. Stop Smoking
Smoking is a big no-no, and it can also double a woman's risk of getting what's called stress incontinence. This is a form of incontinence that is caused by a person having a high stress level.
Nicotine may be to blame, too.
If you stop smoking, you'll:
•Lower your risk of stress incontinence
•Lower your risk of heart and/or lung disease
Smoking is a difficult habit to stop, but it is possible with the right amount of effort and dedication.
3. Eliminate Stimulants from Your Diet
Stimulants are often bladder irritants. The drinks, most often, that you love will be the key irritant in your diet. There are times when one drink can cause you to leak or spend far too much time in the bathroom.
You may even feel the urge to urinate when you don't have to go.
A few irritants that you may be consuming are:
If you plan to drink or eat any of these items, it is wise to prepare with incontinence supplies. Liners, guards, bed pads, special underwear and even adult diapers are an option for anyone with incontinence.
4. Stop Straining in the Bathroom
No one wants to make their bowel movement the key topic of discussion at the dinner table. But what you might not know is that all that straining in the bathroom may lead to weak pelvic floor muscles.
If you have any of these problems, you're likely straining too much:
The rule of thumb is that if your stool is too hard to pass, you need to talk to your doctor. There may be a medical issue at play, or you may need to eat more fiber. A high-fiber diet will soften the stool and put an end to the stress you're putting on your pelvic floor.
Drinking more fluids, especially water, will also help loosen your stool.
Incontinence doesn't need to be a lifelong problem. With the right measures and medication, you can live a comfortable life without fear of leaks along the way.
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