Male urinary incontinence may be a temporary condition that lasts for a time or something that you will live with the rest of your life. Fortunately, there are lifestyle changes that will help you manage your condition and minimize the frequency of leakage. Be mindful of these five things, since they have the potential to make your incontinence worse.
An Enlarged Prostate
It’s not unusual for the prostate to enlarge slightly as you age. It’s when the prostate seems to enlarge more than normal that you should be concerned. Along with being checked to determine what has caused the change, know that your urinary system will be affected. Specifically, you will be more likely to leak when you sneeze, cough, laugh, or do anything that places additional stress on the system.
Depending on the cause, your doctor may recommend medication that helps to regulate the bladder neck muscles and provide you with more control. You may also need to undergo surgery that helps to shrink the prostate and alleviate the stress on your urinary system.
Radiation Therapy and Chemotherapy
Undergoing radiation therapy or chemotherapy can cause temporary urinary incontinence. As your body heals from the effects of either approach, you will find that leakage events become less frequent. In the meantime, the best move you can make is to invest in disposable incontinence underwear designed specifically for men. Many of the designs on the market today look and fit much like a standard pair of briefs. They prevent leakage from soaking through to your outer clothing and provide more time to get to a restroom and change.
When you are suffering from urinary incontinence, some of the food and drink you’ve enjoyed in the past will have to go. Specifically, it’s a good idea to avoid anything that contains caffeine. Coffee, tea, and chocolate are a few examples. By choosing to find substitutes for these and anything else containing caffeine, leakage is likely to be less frequent.
Over the Counter Medications
A number of over the counter medications can increase the odds of leakage in men who are already living with urinary incontinence. That includes cold medications, some anti-inflammatory products, and diet products. If you find that something you’ve used in the past seems to bring on more episodes, ask your doctor or pharmacist to recommend an alternative.
While you love an occasional beer or glass of wine, it may have to go. There’s strong evidence that alcohol consumption in any form will make urinary incontinence worse. Your best bet is to find other things you can consume that are less likely to trigger an accident.
Living with urinary incontinence does mean making some changes. Talk with your doctor and learn more about what to avoid and how you can enjoy as much control over your condition as possible. The right combination of strategies will allow you to go about your day with confidence and feel less self-conscious about your condition.