Don’t Let Incontinence Rule Your Life

01 June 2017

The purpose and tone of today’s article is going to be a little different to the topics we normally write about. Everyone thinks of incontinence as a physical problem and obviously the visible symptoms and issues are clearly physical in nature. However, incontinence can also have a huge impact on your mental and emotional state which can be just as debilitating or upsetting as the physical aspects.

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Everyone suffers from major setbacks in their life, but the important thing is not the severity of the setback but rather how you cope with the problem and power your way through it.

The good news is, that in the vast majority of cases, incontinence can be treated and the results tend to be successful so perhaps the biggest challenge is how to get through that period of treatment when things are not going well.

Having spoken to many people who are either dealing with incontinence, or who have successfully overcome the problem, the initial reaction seems to be to hide themselves away: to change their habits and lifestyle.

People stop going out, they break contact with their friends, which in turn makes them feel depressed and isolated. If anything this strategy exacerbates the whole situation rather than improving things.

Take The Opportunity To Develop Good Habits

Whenever you want to achieve anything the key is to develop good habits. The theory goes that if you complete a task every day without fail for thirty consecutive days it becomes normal and you no longer have to actively think or force yourself to do it.

For anyone who has ever given up smoking you will remember the day when you suddenly realised you hadn't even thought of a cigarette for over 24 hours. That is when you know the battle has been won and that your brain now no longer is ruled by habit.

When it comes to dealing with incontinence you will no doubt have been given pelvic floor exercises to repeat on a daily basis. The key here is to develop a habit when you are constantly and repeatedly performing these exercises.

Think of these exercises as you fighting back against incontinence, as you taking control. This positive attitude will make you feel more motivated and determined and it will give you back a feeling of power and control that many people say they lost when incontinence occurred.

Every time you perform your exercises you are punching incontinence in the face and, eventually, you will score a knockout.

The Little Things Are Important

Image titleWhen we look back on our lives everyone tends to focus on the big things in their life. The weddings, the births of children, or maybe a job promotion but the reality is that these things are few and far between.

What makes your life special are the little things in life. Spending time with your partner, or going to the beach with the kids, even something as simple as going out for a meal at the end of a busy week.

These are the foundations upon which our lives are built, and yet, when perceived disasters happen, such as being diagnosed with incontinence, it is those very foundations that we kick away.

We don’t go out for a walk or meet a friend for a coffee or a pint. We stop visiting friends and family because we are embarrassed and then we wonder why we feel even more miserable.

It’s the adult equivalent of removing all the toys from a child, and yet in this situation, it is self-inflicted.

Do the Opposite Of What Your Brain Tells You

The brain is an amazing piece of equipment but in this situation I believe we should do the opposite of what it tells us.

Let me explain further. We all know for instance that fast food is not healthy and yet the smell of freshly made pizza drives most of us wild. The thought of devouring a few slices is often the factor that makes us ‘just this once’ go inside and purchase.

Or in the morning when the alarm goes off and it’s time to get up for work our brains are screaming at us to hit the snooze button and go back to sleep. We know that’s not what needs to be done but that’s what our brain tells us to do.

Senior Couple in Woods

When dealing with incontinence a lot of people are told by their brains to stay indoors; it’s safer, much less risk of accidents, etc. But by listening to your brain, by cutting yourself off, you are losing the very things that make your life special.

The very worst thing that can happen if you do go out is a leak and, in all likelihood, you will notice before anyone else. Take some extra pads, take some extra clothes, but most importantly retake control of your life.

Keep doing the things in your life that make it worthwhile; don’t let incontinence rule your life. Take positive and decisive action and you can, and will, overcome this issue. It may cause you a few minor problems but never ever let it become a controlling force in your life.

Incontinence might seem like a major problem at the time but, looking back afterwards, you will realise it was nothing more than an inconvenience.