Incontinence in Men Shouldn't Pose Uncomfortable Questions
I bet if you asked, men across the country would say "No Way!" to the thought of wearing incontinence supplies. They would say no to incontinence pads designed for men called male guards. They would say no to visiting with the doctor about it because urinary incontinence comes with age and is "normal". They would definitely be afraid to have a prostate exam for fear of dreaded news.
But what if your man suddenly couldn't make it to the toilet in time to prevent an accident (called urgency incontinence).
What if he could not go anywhere without visiting the toilet too frequently for his own comfort (called urinary frequency).
What if he suddenly or gradually developed difficulties maintaining an erection or releasing urine (a possible symptom of nerve damage or prostate issues)?
Would you let him continue living as usual? Of course not! You would demand, pester, coach, ask, or a combination of all of the above to get him to a doctor.
Urinary incontinence in men is usually treatable, to a degree, with pelvic floor exercises called Kegels (yes men can do them too). Weakening of these muscles and the sphincter muscles that contract the urethra and bladder are normal with age. Everything gets a little more relaxed as we age. But according to this, urinary incontinence as a symptom of nerve damage is not normal. It is a red flag. And only a doctor can determine the difference between the two.
When the bladder and urethra work properly, the bladder stores urine for a few hours and then, upon a signal from the brain that you are ready, releases it through the urethra and outside of the body. All of these actions require the pelvic floor and urethral muscles to contract and release in time with the nervous signals to the brain. It is a song and dance that many of us take for granted.
In instances of nerve damage like Parkinson's, Stroke, Multiple Sclerosis, among others, the signals between the muscles, organs, and nerves all get crossed.
He may find that gradually or instantaneously, he can not control his bladder and leaks urine when he does not want to. He may urinate in the night in his sleep. He may feel like he has to urinate too frequently and either produces a normal level or urine or does not produce much urine at all. It may burn, hurt, or produce blood when he urinates.
All of these signal the need for a talk with his doctor. The solution could be as simple as a UTI (urinary tract infection) or something else but he will never know without seeing his doctor, and will not get better on his own without some form of therapy, be it physical or by using incontinence products for men.
If you have any questions about what product to use, we have recommendations. Visit with a medical supply expert in the comments below!