When urinary incontinence (UI) affects your life, you’re probably looking for ways to manage it. There are many options, including products to help absorb urine leaks and catheter supplies for men and women.
A UI study found that UI often causes feelings of shame, insecurity, lack of control and blame. These can influence people’s willingness to seek professional help for UI.
Precautionary products are designed to protect you in situations where you might be at risk for a leak. They include disposable pads, liners and underwear designed to act as an absorbent barrier between you and your clothes.
Most of these are made for women, but there are some men’s options as well. Using these can reduce your chances of bladder leaks while you’re at work or on the go.
These products are a dime a dozen, but a little research will help you find the ones that suit your needs.
While the best of these is likely to be the one that your doctor recommends, there are several that you can try out at home. Some medical supply companies and large department stores have them in stock. A few of them are even reusable. The most important part is making sure you use them correctly. If you can’t, it could be a sign of more serious problems down the road.
Pelvic Floor Therapy
If you are experiencing urinary incontinence, physical therapy is an effective way to reduce your symptoms. A pelvic floor therapist can teach you techniques to strengthen your bladder muscles and help you control your urges.
A pelvic floor therapist can also recommend behavioral modification and relaxation techniques for your daily routine. These strategies can reduce your leaks and improve your quality of life.
Depending on your symptoms, pelvic floor therapists may use manual techniques or biofeedback to help you learn to use your pelvic muscles properly. In biofeedback, a probe is placed between your vagina or anus and results are displayed on a computer screen to help you see the contraction of your pelvic floor muscles.
In addition to these treatments, a therapist can suggest exercises designed to strengthen and retrain your pelvic floor muscles. These are called Kegel exercises and are done multiple times a day.
Catheters are used to help the bladder drain when it’s full, and can be helpful for preventing leakage during incontinence. They also help people avoid kidney damage and prevent urinary tract infections.
Foley catheters, an indwelling type of catheter, are most often inserted by a medical professional. They are a sterile device retained in the bladder by a balloon that is inflated with sterile liquid.
Indwelling catheters are most commonly used during certain procedures, like surgery. They can also be used to drain urine when an individual has a urinary tract infection or is in bed for long periods of time.
External catheters are an alternative to indwelling catheters and are a welcome option for patients who prefer a less invasive catheter. They are worn over the penis and drain into a bag, which can be discreetly concealed under clothing and allows a person to go about their daily life without worry.
There are a wide range of absorbent products available to help manage urinary incontinence. These include pads, pull-up pants, and protective underwear.
These types of products are disposable and come in different sizes and absorbency levels to suit various degrees of leakage. They are usually worn inside a pair of specially designed stretch pants or normal underwear.
Some pads also have a liner to help them stay in place and prevent leakage. These may be made from cotton or a blend of cotton and polyester.
When deciding on a pad, it is important to measure the amount of urine you are leaking so you can find the right size for you. This can be done by weighing the pad before and after use.
Absorbent products are often grouped into three categories: shaped pads, two-piece systems, and protectors/pull-up pants. These products are generally used for light to moderate incontinence and can be bought at most pharmacies and supermarkets.