Incontinence in Men


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Many people perceive incontinence as something which affects women, although it is estimated that 1 in 33 men of working age suffer from incontinence. Many men feel embarrassed to admit to what is seen as a women’s problem and are hesitant to discuss it or visit their doctor for treatment. There are a number of myths about incontinence which make people more hesitant to discuss it: men fear that incontinence only happens to older people, that it will affect your sex life or that it is an indication of poor hygiene.

Incontinence & Prostate Problems

Incontinence in men is often connected to prostate problems or other medical issues. Many men find their prostate gland becomes enlarged as they age, and in most cases, an enlarged prostate gland does not signify cancer. This is known as Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH), and can put extra pressure on the urethra, which can cause urinary incontinence. More than half of men in their 60s, and as many as 90% of men over 70 will experience problems with urination, including a hesitant flow of urine, urine leaking, and urge incontinence. In most cases, an enlarged prostate gland does not signify cancer.

Men who have had their prostate removed, or who have undergone external beam radiation as a treatment for prostate cancer may find they suffer from incontinence. You will usually wear a catheter to collect urine for a period after having surgery on the prostate, but after this is removed some men still suffer from urine leaking. Depending upon the form of incontinence, this can be treated through dietary changes or pelvic floor exercises.

Incontinence Protection for Men

Although the image associated with incontinence protection is a sanitary pad, there is also incontinence protection available that is specially designed for men, including cups, pads and penile sheathes.  A penile sheath is made of plastic and is similar in design to a condom – it slips over the penis and should be close-fitting, but loose enough to enable to penis to move naturally. They come in a variety of sizes, and are attached by an adhesive to prevent leaking. They also come with a drainage bag to collect any urine which does leak out.