“I laughed so hard, I wet myself”; and other real problems 15



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Despite being someone most people see as confident and sometimes even “loud”, it takes quite a bit of fortification for me to write this blog because the problem I am having is located “down there”. If I had a running nose, I could tell you, but because I have bladder leakage, I am suddenly silent. Funny how that happens to so many of us.

Have you ever said, “I laughed so hard, I wet myself”, speaking figuratively of course. For some of us this is not funny! It can mean a quick trip to the nearest bathroom, and you don’t always make it in time.

Heaven help me when I catch a cold. Coughing, can lead to total embarrassment. “Oops what did I sit in?” is an excuse easily overused.

There are just about as many causes of bladder weakness as there are people suffering from it and it is not limited to men or women, young or not so young. Only you and your healthcare professional can decide what is best for you.

Yes I did speak to my doctor and as a result, spent time with a physiotherapist learning pelvic floor exercises. They were very helpful. According to him, if I keep up my exercises, further intervention is not yet warranted, although it may be a possibility at a later date.

My doctor’s advice, in addition to the exercises, was to reduce my coffee intake because coffee is a diuretic, meaning more frequent trips to the bathroom. Slowly, but surely, I accomplished this and now drink no more than 3 cups a day.

As much as I kid myself I’m not getting any younger, which is in itself a frequent cause of bladder leakage. But thankfully, new products are making it easier to manage in public and in private.

My problem is not severe enough for me to spend every waking moment fearing the distance between comfort stops; my problem is not that chronic. But it can be for some people. But I am so much more relaxed and confident if I know “any accidents” won’t send me home early with my handbag held behind my back. Consequently I wear protection. Here, too, there are different styles of protection, from full panties to pads that offer full protection. You’ll learn what is best and most comfortable for you.

Yes intimate issues can be difficult to discuss, even for a “big-mouth” like me, but if you are one of the over four million men or women with incontinence, there are solutions, please take the time to find the best one for you.

Depend® has a great online tool to help you find the right product and protection for your needs.

Does this sound familiar to you?  Do you find that your weak bladder is getting in the way of planned activities? And have you taken steps to work your life around it?

This is a real story, supported by Depend® to make the discussion about incontinence and bladder issues less taboo among over 60s. Depend® Real-Fit Underwear for men and women with bladder leakage was developed in response to research that identified a distinct consumer need. Real-Fit Underwear are specifically designed to fit and feel like real underwear and protect against moderate to heavy loss of bladder control.


Karen O'Brien-Hall

I've had many careers in my life and loved each one! My new career blossomed when I retired and become an OAP. I am passionate about childhood literacy, books in general and my garden. I love Ballet, Opera, Concerts, Theatre, (both professional and community) and Movies. I tend to have opinions on most things and enjoy a good debate about the topic, not the person. In my thirties, I married my GOM (Gorgeous or Grumpy Old Man) the love of my life.

  1. Yip good old panty liners .If needs must.

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    • Stick-on sanitary towels can be used too. My French physio-therapist told me to do as follows: when going to the toilet, sit, relax, then count to three, then clench and count to ten, let go and let it flow to the end. Then, if you think you haven’t completely emptied your bladder, repeat the exercise. I very rarely have a mishap these days since starting to do that a year ago.

  2. Many of us can empathise as men, Karen, post-prostate. Similarly, like you with your coffee, I drink too many cups of tea and must accept its diuretic effects. Not the end of life as we know it though, is it, so we get on with all we want… sometimes treading a bit more carefully. Often not! 🙂

  3. Constantly checking where the nearest loo is. Now I know what they mean by ‘second childhood’. Pads OK, but take body spray too, or buy perfumed ones….

  4. I had this problem until I went to aerobics classes for older women. They taught us an exercise they called Elvises. You bend your knees slightly and draw your pelvic muscles up towards your belly button. It works. I no longer have a problem. Great sense of freedom. I still do these exercises everyday.

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  5. So what if you wet yourself !!! At least you are having a good laugh which is benificial to your well being

  6. I have had this problem since i was a child and have had quite a few embarrasing incidents.Now i am older i just make a joke of it and reach for the spare underwear in my handbag.Pelvic floor exercises did not help me.I do use panty liners so unless their is a deluge i am reasonably safe.

  7. III al….I also had this problem but found a fix for it after consulting my doctor she offered laser treatment called incontilase, it hasn’t been a week since I had it and already I can notice the effects. no more standing in Bunnings thinking oh no not now please and having to go straight home to change.

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