What is incontinence?
Types of incontinence
Stress incontinence is related to physical stress and manifests as involuntary urination, when pressure on the bladder is decreased. The pressure can be caused by sneezes, cough, and other physical movements. People who suffers from COPD (Cronic obstructive pulmonary disease) can be extra affected by stress incontinence, because they often cough many times a day and they hereby experience a frequent pressure on the bladder.
Urge incontinence occours as a sudden urge to urinate. The bladder contracts with no notice in advance and therefore the citizen is often not able to reach the toilet in time. This condition is also known as overactive bladder.
With this type of incontinence, frequent or constant leakage of urine is experienced, because the bladder cannot be emptied sufficiently during toilet visits. In this way, incontinence can interfere with night sleep because the citizen has to urinate several times during the night.
For some citizens, incontinence is due to not being able to reach the toilet in time – often because of immobility such as poor gait function, arthritis or other mobility losses. It can also be a consequence of impaired vision, which prevents the incontinent citizen from finding the toilet in time, or a stroke which can make especially the elderly unable to respond to the urge to urinate or to find the toilet.
Mixed incontinence is defined by a combination of several of the types of incontinence mentioned above. It is frequent among incontinent citizens to live with not only one but more types of incontinence at the same time.
Dementia and incontinence
Incontinence can be considered social taboo
Many people with incontinence suffer in silence, as they may consider it taboo not to be able to control their urination. In worst case incontinence can lead to social isolation because it may be safer to say no to social events and stay home, where the location of the toilet is well known and it is possible to put on clean clothes if necessary. Only one in four citizens with urinary incontinence turns to the health service and receives help. This is partly because many people think that it is an inevitable part of getting older and partly because many people find it shameful to talk about. Many do not even tell their relatives about their challenges with incontinence.
In recent years, municipalities in Denmark have had an increased focus on preventing incontinence. Many municipalities track down the relevant risk group and offer, for example, pelvic floor training. This is decreasing in the number of elderly people who wear incontinence pads. In addition, targeted interventions in nursing homes, where citizens are helped to the toilet and receive help with pelvic floor exercises, can cure or reduce incontinence. However, this is not helping everyone and incontinence care is therefore still an important form of treatment in order to obtain dignity in a life with incontinence.
As it can be seen from the article above, incontinence has many forms – and so should incontinence care. It is important to keep this in mind whenworking with incontinence care. Wear&Care Technologies offers a unique technology for individually adapted incontinence care.
Contact us today, to get to know more about how we can help you with future incontinence care at your nursing home.
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