Understanding Incontinence

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What is Incontinence?

Incontinence refers to the involuntary loss of bladder or bowel control. This condition can vary in severity, from occasional urine leakage when coughing or sneezing to complete loss of bladder or bowel control. While it becomes more prevalent with age, incontinence can also affect disabled individuals, children and women both childbirth.

Types of Incontinence

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Urinary Incontinence

This condition encompasses various symptoms ranging from occasional leakage to a complete lack of bladder control. Multiple types exist, and some individuals may experience more than one concurrently.

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Stress Incontinence

Caused by external pressures such as laughing, coughing, or exercising, this type results from weakened pelvic floor muscles. Pelvic exercises can alleviate the symptoms for both genders.

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Functional Incontinence

This type arises not from bladder issues, but from physical barriers preventing toilet use. It might stem from unrecognised bladder or bowel signals or reduced mobility.

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Overflow or Chronic Retention

Overflow incontinence involves frequent minor leakages due to difficulty in passing urine. Chronic retention, meanwhile, involves ineffective bladder emptying, leading to Urinary Tract Infections.

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Urge or Overactive Bladder (OAB)

Characterised by sudden urges to urinate, leading to involuntary leakage, often due to the bladder contracting prematurely.

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The need to urinate multiple times during the night can stem from various conditions but can often be treated with the right approach.

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Bowel or Faecal Incontinence

The involuntary loss of stool. Various conditions and medications can lead to this form of incontinence, necessitating medical intervention.

Incontinence Treatment Options

Treatment begins with an accurate diagnosis by a medical professional, followed by personalised strategies ranging from lifestyle adjustments to medical procedures. Some individuals, depending on the severity of their incontinence, may benefit from simple lifestyle choices.

Positive Lifestyle Adjustments for Incontinence Management

  • Modulating beverage intake, especially caffeinated or alcoholic drinks.
  • Consuming 5-6 cups of water daily.
  • Maintaining a balanced diet and weight.
  • Prioritising fibre-rich foods for regular bowel movements.
  • Engaging in pelvic floor exercises.
  • Pre-emptively using the toilet, especially before physical activity.
  • Quitting smoking.
  • Using appropriate incontinence aids.
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Expert Continence Care Assistance

Our sister business, Conquip Continence Services, is a family-run clinic with over 30 years of experience. Conquip prides itself on being a go-to incontinence resource for the community, providing a spectrum of services. As a registered NDIS provider, Conquip extends its continence assessment and support services to NDIS participants of all ages who have bladder or bowel issues linked to their disability. 

Conquip's committed team is passionate about enhancing the independence and life quality of individuals facing bladder and bowel challenges.

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