When you’re at work, the last thing you want to have to worry about is urinary incontinence. If you’re constantly nervous about potential leaks or afraid to even sneeze or laugh, that can affect your job performance as well as your overall stress levels.
Thankfully, you have options. For example, numerous incontinence products are now available to help you get through your workday without worrying. Plus, we offer some helpful techniques and tips that can help you with coping with incontinence while you’re at work.
1. Get the right incontinence supplies to keep you protected during the day.
First and foremost, you want to be armed with the right incontinence products for your unique needs. Just like catheters, incontinence supplies are not “one-size-fits-all.”
If you have light or infrequent leaks, incontinence pads or male guards may be a good option. Pads and guards both fit easily inside regular underwear to collect small urine leaks throughout the day. In addition, they’re incredibly discreet. No one should be able to tell when you’re wearing incontinence pads.
Another option that may work well for you, especially if you have more frequent or moderate to severe urine leakage, is protective pull-on underwear. As you probably already know, wearing regular underwear to work with no protection may result in visible leakage. Disposable adult underwear may help with this, and you have a lot of options among many of the top incontinence product brands. For instance, protective underwear will vary based on a brand’s unique features and design as well as size.
Curious about trying some incontinence product options out before getting a full order? 180 Medical understands how important it is to make sure you’re getting the right product to fit your unique needs. That’s why we offer free samples, including adult diapers, baby diapers, underwear, incontinence pads, bed pads, and more. Contact our Incontinence Specialists to get the ball rolling.
2. Bring back-up clothing to work.
If you’ve got the right incontinence supplies for your needs and change it out at the appropriate intervals, you may never have to worry about changing clothes due to an unfortunate accident or leakage. However, it may bring you peace of mind to keep an extra change of pants and underwear close at hand.
Consider storing your back-up clothing in your work locker, briefcase, bag, desk, or even in your car. This way, in the event of a visible leak, you can easily make a quick change into new pants, and your coworkers will likely never know the difference.
3. Stay hydrated.
We know this one seems counterintuitive because it probably seems like a good idea to cut back on your fluid intake if you have urinary incontinence. However, dehydrating yourself to stave off potential urine leaks may end up being hard on your body, including your kidneys. You need water to be able to function well physically as well as mentally.
Plus, did you know that if you’re dehydrated, your urine actually smells stronger? That could mean leakage could end up being more apparent to your colleagues.
According to the National Association for Continence (NAFC), you may want to drink between 6 to 8 8 oz. glasses of water daily. However, this amount will vary from person to person. Talk to your doctor to find out their recommendation for you.
4. Make time for bathroom breaks.
Taking consistent trips to the bathroom can help you avoid potential leaks before they happen. Drinking plenty of water to stay hydrated can help you get up to go to the bathroom more frequently. You might consider setting alarms on your phone for bathroom breaks, or you may want to follow a specific schedule according to when you can have a few minutes away from your desk or workstation.
Keep in mind that you may want to consider privately disclosing your medical condition to a trusted Human Resources member or a trusted colleague like your manager. If your urinary incontinence requires very frequent trips to the bathroom, they may want to know in advance and could even help you with providing additional breaks.
5. Keep up with your prescribed treatment plan.
It’s a good idea to follow your doctor’s prescribed orders. For example, if your doctor recommends a specific medication to treat your incontinence, be sure to take it as prescribed to avoid leaks. If they’ve recommended specific exercises such as Kegel exercises, you may find it helpful to do them at work throughout the day. This may help strengthen your pelvic floor. On top of that, Kegel exercises are totally invisible, so no one but you will know you’re getting in your daily exercise to treat your incontinence.
We understand it’s not fun to have to worry about incontinence issues anywhere, much less at work where your mind needs to stay focused on career-related tasks. However, with these tips along with adequate preparation, you may be able to regain more confidence and go about your day at work without fear of urine leaks.