Approximately 13 million Americans are incontinent and 25% of them are men. Just because women are three times more likely to have this condition doesn’t mean men should ignore it. Especially men over the age of 50.
Nobody wants to discuss occasional or frequent bladder leaks so urinary incontinence is not exactly a hot topic when hanging out with the fellas. Studies have shown that men are less likely to see a doctor for regular check-ups--let alone for an embarrassing problem--so they’ll just “tough it out.” But ignoring a problem doesn’t make it go away, it can lead to bigger more severe health problems.
If you think you may have urinary incontinence, here are some things you need to know:
Types of Male Incontinence
Incontinence is when your bladder isn’t holding or releasing urine properly. There are three kinds of incontinence experienced most by men.
- Stress Incontinence – you leak a little urine when you laugh, cough, sneeze, or try to lift something heavy.
- Overflow Incontinence – when the bladder doesn’t empty completely after urinating, you may experience leaks.
- Overactive Bladder (OAB) - a sudden or strong urge to urinate and you may not make it to the bathroom before you leak a little urine.
It can seem like these types of incontinence are no big deal or just a sign of getting older, but it could be more serious.
Causes of Male Incontinence
There can be many reasons for male incontinence. The most common are:
- Enlarged prostate
- Narrow urethra
- Bladder muscles unable to contract or contracting too much
- Urinary system blockage
- Urinary tract infection
Medical conditions such as multiple sclerosis, diabetes, and Alzheimer’s
Managing Male Incontinence
You can live a normal, active life with incontinence. It is a treatable condition and, in some men, depending on the severity, can be eliminated.
The first thing you must do is see your primary care doctor or a urologist. While it may be uncomfortable, if you are experiencing leaks, it is a necessary conversation. A doctor can make a proper diagnosis and recommend a treatment plan.
Next, you may need to make some lifestyle changes like...
- Quit smoking
- Decrease caffeinated, carbonated, and alcoholic beverages and cut out spicy foods
- Get more exercise and maintain a healthy weight
- Drink plenty of water to avoid dehydration. Six to eight glasses will do.
- Try not to drink too close to bedtime or when you know you won’t have a bathroom nearby.
Finally, you may need quality incontinence products such as male guards or protective underwear to help manage your condition. In some cases, these supplies may be covered by Medicaid or other insurance plans.
If you find you need quality incontinence products and supplies to help you manage nighttime incontinence, the Product Experts at Rely Medical Supply can help! Please call, toll-free, at 1-888-529-2308. Our friendly and helpful representatives answer calls from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm Central Standard Time. Each representative is trained to help you select the right products for your personal needs, to help you stay dry and comfortable.
The information on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your health care provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking it because of something you have read on this blog.