Those of us of a certain age are familiar with the challenges that urinary incontinence can bring. Generally, it is something that affects those of us who have had children and there is a definite link between pregnancy and incontinence.
Incontinence can be a great source of social embarrassment and it’s good to know there are plenty of products out there that can help us to manage this condition. It is, of course, always better to try to prevent these things in the first place but in all honesty, not all of us can. Our overall health, weight and our experiences during pregnancy all play a role.
This infographic from Hartmann Direct explains that incontinence can begin in pregnancy and suggests ways in which it can be managed both during pregnancy and afterwards.
The number one piece of advice I remember being given by my midwife and, later, by my health visitor was “do your pelvic floor exercises“! Years later, and much wiser on the subject of pelvic floor health, I would advise you (if budget allows) to visit a Women’s Health Physio for more tailored advice both before and after the birth. Some of us carry tension in our pelvic floors which can actually be made worse by Kegels. I’m not a doctor so I urge you to do your research and ask as many questions as you can.
And, as with all health conditions, watching what you eat and drink can pay huge dividends. Did you know, for example, that cola can be a bladder irritant? Things improved greatly when I managed to kick my two can a day diet coke habit!
Remember you are not alone and there are things you can do so please don’t suffer in silence.
For advice on a related problem, the irritation that is haemorrhoids or piles, there’s some great advice on dealing with them here.
Do you have any strategies for avoiding or coping with incontinence? How has it affected your life?