3 articles Tag stress incontinence

Bladder Weakness – Seeing The Funny Side!

bladder weaknessBladder weakness. Let’s face it. it’s not the most glamorous subject, but given that its something which affects up to 14 million people here in the UK, it’s still something that we should be talking about in order to break the taboos surrounding it. I’m not ashamed to say that after two pregnancies which resulted in c-sections, I still have issues with bladder weakness when I’ve got a cough, which means that I spend most of winter worrying about peeing my pants.

In the spirit of dealing with bladder weakness head on, I took to Facebook to ask my friends if they had any hilarious stories they could share with us, and they came up with some real gems! Read on for a giggle (just make sure you’re wearing your incontinence pants first!)

“I was shopping one day and had a sneezing fit – with every sneeze i peed at least half a millilitre,  and it was the one day i hadn’t put a pad on as i had run out. I must have sneezed at least 7 times! I also had grey joggers on so it was VERY obvious! Lets just say I abandoned my shopping…!”

“When you’re being sick isn’t fun”

“When we were at collage, me and a friend went to a zumba class. It was pretty hard core and we just didn’t have a clue so ended up fairly amused. As the class went on and it got ramped up we got more and more lost and ended up with uncontrollable giggles we were laughing so much that she wet herself right in the middle of a fully mirrored dance studio with 30-ish other woman all pretty close so she grabbed her water bottle and in a pretty quick thinking manoeuvre she squeezed the contents of the bottle all down her front then started screaming and shouted about how rubbish the new water bottle was and that it looked like she’d wet herself.” (side note – I actually think this one is GENIUS!!)

I think my own favourite stress incontinence story is from when I was heavily pregnant with Sausage. Husband and I had gone for a walk in the woods with Chuck, who was on a long lead. Husband was distracted for a moment and Chuck managed to wind the rope round his legs and somehow drag him backwards into a ditch like a human AT-AT. I laughed SO much that I started to leak and being about two miles away from the car or any toilets made for a VERY uncomfortable walk back for me!

The point I’m making is that we’re ALL human and no-one is perfect. People pee themselves and it’s nothing to be ashamed of, just make sure that you’re prepared for next time!

Stress Incontinence – The Inconvenient Truth

I’ve been quite candid in the past about the fact that my continence is not what it once was since having two babies via c-section. I don’t know if it’s the fact that two major operations cutting through my abdominal muscles has left them weak or just the fact that continence issues happen as women age, but either way, wetting yourself when you’re 31 is not a good look.

bladder leakage

There are a whole new set of things that are a peril to me, now that I have tinkle issues; laughing too hard, getting a cough, jumping on a bouncy castle, but perhaps the most annoying is hayfever season. As if it’s not bad enough to have streaming, itchy eyes and a running nose, I have to worry about other potential incidents whenever I sneeze! Obviously the “standing really still and crossing my legs as tightly as I can” is an options, but it rarely works, which is why having added protection from Hartmann can really help. Hartmann offer a whole range of continence solutions from pregnant women right up to the elderly and everything in between, with the main focus on discretion.

It’s all well and good being super frank about these things, and I’m a firm believer that the stigma of stress incontinence needs to be broken, but at the same time I need things to be invisible, as if they aren’t even there, for me to really feel at ease. There’s a really excellent tool on the Hartmann site which allows you answer a few questions, and it then suggests the product which would be most suitable for your age, gender and lifestyle.

Another thing which is really appealing about Hartmann is that you can order online and they’ll deliver straight to your door. It doesn’t get more discreet than that! There’s nothing that makes you feel quite so self-conscious as standing in the supermarket aisle, choosing your incontinence product and then having to walk around with it in your trolley! This completely removes the embarrassment factor and allows you to browse at leisure from the comfort of your own home.

Here are some useful facts about bladder leakage:

  • Bladder leakage is a very common problem. According to the Bladder and Bowel Foundation around 14 million people in the UK experience regular bladder leakage. That means one in every 4 or 5 people who live in the UK have this problem.
  • Stress urinary incontinence is leakage of urine from the bladder on exertion. Simple activities which result in leakage include picking up shopping or a child; a hearty laugh, cough or sneeze; aerobics, trampolining and running. Stress incontinence is due to weakness of the pelvic floor muscles. Contrary to what the name implies stress incontinence is not caused by emotional stress, although any leakage may cause the sufferer to be ‘stressed’.
  • In women, the pelvic floor muscles may be weakened as a result of childbirth, but women who have never had children can still suffer from stress incontinence. In men, these muscles may be weakened following surgery on the prostate gland.

Head over to the Hartmann Direct site for more information.

“Why Do You Cross Your Legs When You Cough?” – Kegel8 Ultra Review and Prize Draw

The Kegel8 Ultra

The question above was posed to me by my darling Husband a while back and up until that point, I don’t think I’d realised that I did it. I had a caesarean with Sausage and I think I thought that pelvic floor exercises were something for those who’d managed to squeeze a human out of their fanny. But there’s no denying it, since childbirth, be it through the chuff or out of the sunroof, my pelvic floor has definitely weakened.

A couple of months ago, I had a stinking cough (not stinking because I stink of wee, honest) and on more than one occasion, I went into a coughing fit and came out of the other end with more than just a clear throat. There’s…leakage, shall we say? I’m not talking full-on piss-your-pants, just…oh shut up, you know what I mean, right? RIGHT?! Don’t leave me hanging here!

This isn’t easy to talk about for anyone, this post will probably be read by lots of people who know me in real life who I’ll probably now notice sniffing me to see if they can detect L’Eau de Urine next time we meet. But the fact is, it happens. Unless you’re a yoga bunny or have a tuppence that’s more toned than Jody Marsh’s new physique, the chances are you’ll have wee’d when you sneeze (Mammywoo, I’m looking at you love 😉 )

Anyway. The point to all of this public humiliation is that I’ve been sent something to review. It’s called a Kegel8 Ultra (RRP £117.99) and it’s an electronic muscle stimulator to help with stress incontinence. You know those Slendertone things you strap to your belly to give you abs without doing a million sit-ups? Imagine that, but distinctly more…probey. 

I started using it last night, and despite Husband’s insistence that it’s was probably just an elaborate vibrator and that he could probably rig it up to the mains for me if the supplied 9V battery wasn’t doing it for me, there’s noting pleasurable about it. It feels very weird. You can feel the whole area tensing up and for the first five minutes I had to sit and look at the display so that I could tell when it was about to go off, so that it didn’t take me by surprise, but you get used to it after a while and I even increased the intensity of the contractions a couple of times.

Kegel8 Day Toner

It’s easy to set up and use (although there wasn’t any lube in the box, as per the contents) and there are unlimited amounts of programs and options for you to choose from depending on the severity and cause of the problem, so it can be used by just about anybody (apparently there’s also an, erm, well, an anal attachment available separately, although I don’t even want to think about that!).

I’ll update you on my progress as I go along, I’m supposed to use it every day for 20 minutes and I’m not sure how long it’ll be before I see an improvement, but I may give it a month and then go and sit in the doctors surgery so that I can get another horrid cough and really test my new noonie muscles out. Jokes. 

So yeah. I wee when I cough. But I bet you do too, so that’s okay.

I’ve also, very kindly, been given 10 Kegel8 Day Toners (RRP £29.99) to give away to my lovely readers, just do the usual business with the widget below to be in with a chance of winning. Please read the Terms and Conditions of entry on the widget before entering.

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