Incontinence can be confusing and upsetting, so much so that your elderly family member may not even want to talk about what’s going on for a while. Having open and loving conversations about what’s happening and what might be causing it is vital. It’s also important to be able to talk with your elderly family member’s doctor about what she’s experiencing
A Weak or Damaged Bladder
Physical problems with your senior’s bladder or urinary tract can lead directly to urinary incontinence problems. The muscles in the bladder and urethra help to contain the urine until your senior is ready to void her bladder. When those muscles aren’t working as well as they should, leaks can occur when your senior is least expecting them to happen. Infections or bladder stones can also cause incontinence and damage the bladder.
Other Health Conditions
So many other health issues, like having had children, or health issues requiring surgery can weaken areas around your senior’s bladder. That can cause her to have some problems with incontinence. Medications that your senior takes to manage those other health issues have to be processed through her liver, kidneys, and bladder. That can mean side effects that affect her bladder, even if the medication is for something else entirely.
You’ve probably heard a million times that what your senior eats affects everything about her health. It really is true, especially if your elderly family member tends to eat a lot of spicy foods or drinks carbonated beverages. Both can be irritating to the bladder. Caffeine, sugar, and other foods and drinks can also be an irritant. Your senior’s particular dietary triggers might be different than the norm. Keeping a food diary can help you to start to notice specific triggers.
Too Much Stress
Stress is always a problem for the entire body. It can definitely make incontinence worse, though. And if your senior is worried or stressed about incontinence, that becomes a vicious cycle that keeps making itself worse over time. It helps if your elderly family member learns to remain calm about the things that are beyond her control.
Your senior’s medical team can help you to narrow down what’s causing her incontinence. There may be solutions ranging from medical options to products that help her. It’s also a good idea to consider bringing in elder care providers. They’ve got experience helping seniors with complicated and embarrassing situations.
If you or an aging loved-one are considering hiring Elderly Care in Hartford, AL, please contact the caring staff at Wiregrass HomeCare today. Call us at 334-539-5900.