Fecal and urinary incontinence are unpleasant conditions that can have a marked impact on the sufferer’s daily life. They are conditions that can hit people of all ages though it is more likely to hit older people, and more women than men are affected.
It is natural that anyone who does not feel in control will be reluctant to try to lead a normal life, enjoying leisure time in public places for example, if they have still to solve the problem.
Loss of control
In both forms of incontinence the sufferer loses control of bowel movement and discharge and hence that can happen at any time and anywhere. Anyone who suffers is likely to want to avoid social gatherings. The problem needs to be addressed both in terms of clothing and treatment.
Both forms of incontinence have several different causes and the first thing is to diagnose the problem and its cause.
Treatment for faecal incontinence will be dependent on what is actually causing the problem and how serious it is. In some cases surgery will be an option but likewise a change of diet or drugs can be recommended to alleviate the problem.
A healthy diet is advisable for everyone and certainly is important for anyone suffering such a problem. Dietary fibre, fruit and vegetables are seen as essential parts of a healthy diet but fresh fruit and vegetables contain natural laxatives so ironically it might be advisable to reduce their consumption.
In terms of the urinary equivalent, once again the treatment will vary with the diagnosis. Drugs may be a solution but surgery and bladder retraining are also options. Exercise to strengthen the pelvic muscles may be one of the recommendations to treat a urinary problem.
Limit the embarrassment
Whatever the reason behind the problem there are products available to help those currently suffering. They range from pads to plugs which are fairly good for mild cases to diapers and nappies for those with more serious problems.
In the home there are ways to limit the impact of incontinence. These include products that absorb any discharges whilst the sufferer is asleep. A young child may suffer from incontinence; bed wetting tends to be cured as a child grows but if the condition persists too long it may be that there is a problem that needs medical attention and diagnosis. It is not a condition exclusively in the elderly.
Incontinence is not a subject that anyone can easily discuss; it can imply that the sufferer is no more than an infant. No one likes to be thought of as immature yet this is a valid medical condition much the same as heart conditions or cancers and should be thought of as such. Fortunately the medical profession has a thorough understanding and will have the sympathy and patience that will certainly lessen the embarrassment of treatment.
It is essential to get help with treatment and certainly it is important to look at companies that specialise in products that can be of practical assistance on a daily basis.
Steve Smith is a freelance writer who lives on the South West Coast of Turkey; the small town of Dalyan, famous as a nesting site for the endangered loggerhead turtle. He writes on a series of topics ranging from current affairs and economics to consumer affairs and incontinence products