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Continence Awareness 4 ~ 10 September

Life Without Limits Week -Continence Awareness

4 ~ 10 September

Over 280,000 New Zealanders have poor bladder or bowel control.

One in three women who ever had a baby wet themselves.

About a third of the people waiting for a GP have an incontinence problem, but 70% of them won't tell their GP about it.

Poor bladder or bowel control is too often hidden or denied which is a pity, because this very common health condition can be treated and often cured. Embarrassment stands in the way of many New Zealanders seeking professional advice.

Affecting all age groups, across all walks of life, about 1 in 3 women and 1 in 10 men have an incontinence problem (around 280,000 New Zealanders). 15% of five year old children will wet the bed tonight.

For many adults, a problem of "weak bladder" can gradually worsen over time, impacting quality of life by causing people to cut back on paid and volunteer work, interactions with family, relationship with partners, social outings, sport and healthy exercise.

Incontinence doesn't just include "leakage". Toilet frequency and urgency, constipation and haemorrhoids can also be associated with an incontinence problem.
These days, there's a wide range of treatment options available, including simple things to try at home. These "conservative treatments" include adjustments to diet, the types and amount of daily fluid intake, and pelvic floor muscle exercises.

But incontinence is typically a complex condition, with many interacting factors. A continence assessment by a GP or a trained continence advisor is the best way to go. The most effective treatment program - one tailored to the individual - can then be devised.

The New Zealand Continence Association encourages people to talk to their doctor, a continence clinic, or phone the National Bladder Helpline (0800 650 659).

Poor bladder or bowel control won't get better on its own. "Just a small problem"? Small problems have a habit of getting bigger! The NZ Continence Association says that no problem is "too small" to seek professional help.

For further help …
for information about bladder and bowel control phone for our free leaflets on the many aspects of incontinence, plus contact details of local continence services


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