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When you suffer from urinary incontinence, concerns over accidents can take over your entire day. You may find yourself worried about where the nearest restrooms are wherever you go or you may even feel anxious about leaving the house for fear of the sudden urge to go or bladder leakage. Protective pads and liners can help you live a fuller life and worry less about your incontinence symptoms.
Stress incontinence is a form of incontinence that is common in women and occurs when the muscles that support the bladder become weakened due to age, childbirth, obesity and certain medical problems. People with stress incontinence typically do not experience a complete release of the bladder. Instead, they often suffer from urine leakage when they cough, laugh or sneeze. For this type of incontinence, lightweight protection like a pantiliner is often ideal. Pantiliners are thin absorbent pads that adhere to the underwear. Although they are not absorbent enough to protect against a complete release of the bladder, a pantiliner can capture urine leakage and keep it locked away until you can reach the bathroom and change the liner.
Women who suffer from other forms of incontinence that result in more severe accidents can opt for self-adhesive pads that are thicker and more absorbent than pantiliners. There are many types of incontinence pads on the market. Some feature wings or tabs that fold under the underwear to keep them in place. There are also extra long pads that fully cover the seat and crotch of underwear and pads that are flexible and capable of twisting with your movements, helping to prevent leaks and bunching. Heavy absorbency pads are also available.
When men suffer from urinary incontinence, accidents are most likely to wet the front of the pants rather than the middle of the crotch as in women. To combat this problem, protective guards for men are often shaped like cups and are tucked into the front of the underwear. These types of guards are helpful for men who have bladder control problems or leakage due to prostate enlargement and other men's health concerns. Longer self-adhesive pads like those available for women are also offered by various brands for men but are custom designed to be more absorbent in the front where men need the most protection.
If urinary incontinence is a problem at night, taking steps to protect mattresses from urine is of the utmost importance to maintaining sanitary conditions in the bedroom. Disposable pads can be placed under bedding above the mattress to absorb messes. These thin pads can be left in place for a few nights if no accident occurs, but they often become wrinkled and bunched eventually and must be replaced. Reusable pads for bedding are also available. These cloth pads are machine washable and can be left in place until an accident occurs, even if months pass.
Be sure to talk to your doctor if you are experiencing incontinence symptoms for the first time to find out what the cause of your problems may be.