WDHS Continence Nurses, Sara Derksen and Jess McLeod hope to increase awareness of the support services available during World Continence Week
Incontinence is ‘no laughing matter’ and to highlight ‘World Continence Week’ 19-25 June, Western District Health Service (WDHS) is raising awareness about where to seek help and how to manage and treat symptoms.
WDHS Continence Nurse, Sue Langley says incontinence can stop people doing the things they love, like playing with children or grandchildren, socialising with friends or exercising.
“Bladder and bowel problems are much more common than people may think, and can really affect a person’s quality of life.
Incontinence or the loss of bladder or bowel control affects one in four Australians, comprising more than a quarter of the Australian population aged 15 years and over,” Ms Langley said.
Continence or incontinence issues can include having to go to the toilet more than eight times over 24 hours, the inability to postpone the urge to pass urine, going to the toilet more than two times overnight, bed wetting, ongoing constipation, ongoing loose bowel motions, inability to control gas or frequently straining to evacuate the bowel.
Ms Langley says those who experience incontinence are often reluctant to discuss their issues.
“Many people do not discuss their continence problems, or they believe it is a normal part of ageing and think that nothing can be done.
However, continence or incontinence issues can be managed more effectively, improved and even resolved,” Ms Langley said.
The Continence Service at WDHS offers confidential, individual assessments and management advice for continence problems, along with advice and support to families and carers of those who are experiencing continence problems.
Information is provided on continence products and devices such as bedwetting alarms. The continence service also provides education on healthy bladder and bowel habits to individuals and to community groups.
For further information or to make a self-referral to the Continence Service please phone 5551 8261.