Most people know that loss of bladder control leads to urinary incontinence or light to heavy leakage throughout the day and night. And, although it is very common in older men and women, urinary incontinence is not inevitable for seniors as they age. But what most people don’t know is that urinary incontinence can emerge as a symptom of certain diseases that affect our nerve endings, such as diabetes and multiple sclerosis. Here’s why each of these diseases can affect bladder control, resulting in leakage:
Diabetes and Incontinence
Type 1 diabetes occurs when the human body does not make enough insulin, caused by the immune system attacking and destroying pancreatic cells that produce insulin. Urinary complications from Type 1 diabetes can arise because of the damage the disease causes to blood vessels and nerve-endings in our bodies. In most people, this nerve damage slows the communication between bladder muscles and the brain, which causes the bladder muscles to release before the brain knows it’s time to visit the restroom.
Alternatively, nerve damage from Type 1 diabetes can also weaken bladder muscles so that the bladder cannot completely empty during urination. In this case, the bladder muscles do usually have time to communicate with the brain but, after urination, those affected will notice light to heavy leakage after they feel as though they’ve completely emptied their bladders.
Like Type 1 diabetes, Type 2 diabetes can also lead to urinary incontinence symptoms. However, symptoms of urinary incontinence in individuals with Type 2 diabetes usually results from body weight pressing against the pelvic muscles, causing the bladder muscles to release. In general, both Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes can cause frequent urination due to increased fluid intake, as diabetes can cause increased thirst as a result of excess glucose in the bloodstream. As you can imagine, drinking more liquids means increased, frequent stress on bladder muscles that are already weakened, often exacerbating the issue.
Multiple Sclerosis and Incontinence
Similar to diabetes, multiple sclerosis (MS) can also cause bladder control problems due to the delayed transmission of nerve signals between the bladder and the brain. Multiple sclerosis is a disease that causes the immune system to eat away at protective coverings on nerves, resulting in – among other symptoms – issues with nerve signals that usually tell the brain that the body needs to release urine. Like diabetes, damaged nerve-endings from MS can result in an overactive bladder that cannot hold the usual amount of urine, or it can also cause urinary retention, which is when the bladder muscles are too weak to properly empty, causing leakage after the body thinks it has fully emptied the bladder. Both of these conditions can cause a myriad of symptoms including urgent urination, delayed start of urination and nighttime urination.
Urinary incontinence can create major challenges in managing one’s work, home, and social life. Because of the constant fear of light to heavy leakage, people with urinary incontinence can feel a loss of self-esteem, self-confidence and general independence. However, if you have urinary incontinence, it’s important to remember that you are not alone and that there are resources and products out there that can dramatically improve your daily lifestyle and help you return to a sense of normalcy.
Among these resources are Wearever incontinence products for men and women. Wearever incontinence underwear, incontinence panties, and incontinence briefs are 100 percent washable for 200 – 250 loads, which saves individuals substantial time and money. In fact, washable undergarments typically save over $400 a year compared to buying disposable panties and briefs.
Among our most popular styles for women are our Midrise Maximum Panty and the Maximum Absorbency Bikini Cut Panty, depending on which style you prefer. Both are stylish, heavily absorbing solutions to leakage caused by urinary incontinence. Each style actually offers even more protection than our regular Women’s Super Incontinence Panty, while continuing our tradition of soft cotton and polyester fabric. Even better, the fabric is lined with antimicrobial protection that reduces odor-causing bacteria!
Complete with the perfect combination of high-absorbency materials and style, our Maximum Absorbency Bikini Cut Panties are lab-tested and proven to absorb up to 20 fluid ounces of liquid, making them the most absorbent of our Wearever incontinence panties. These panties provide all-day double protection against light to heavy leakage.
For men, one of our most popular styles is our Maximum Absorbency H-Fly Boxer Brief. Holding up to 20 ounces of liquid, it is our highest absorbency boxer brief and is ideal for men dealing with moderate to heavy incontinence. The sewn-in Unique-Dri pad traps both excess liquids and unwanted odors, while the horizontal fly design makes accessibility and breathability easier than ever before. Toss out those pads and disposable undergarments and replace them with this stylish, effective and reusable Wearever option, good for up to 250 washes!
In addition to these styles, we have over a dozen more styles to choose from in Women’s and Men’s!