Living with incontinence

While urinary incontinence can be embarrassing, it shouldn't stop you from enjoying your life. Susan, a 34-year-old mother of two, who developed stress incontinence as a result of having her two children, has refused to let it interfere with her active life.

Susan has always been physically active. She loves to jog, play tennis, and race sailboats. In fact, sailboat racing is a passion for her and her husband - that's how they met. When she developed incontinence, she didn't want to race boats because going to the toilet in the middle of a race is not easy.

Before having her children, Susan thought incontinence was a condition that only affected the elderly. Susan's grandmother had been diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease several years prior and Susan had watched her go from a healthy, vibrant, and active woman in her mid-70s to someone who didn't recognize her own family members. And Susan's grandmother had suffered from incontinence as the Alzheimer's continued to worsen.

When Susan discovered she had incontinence, she went to see her doctor, horrified that perhaps something far more serious was going on. But her doctor assured her that it was actually very common for women who have had children to develop stress incontinence. Her doctor told her about Kegel exercises to strengthen her pelvic floor muscles, and put her into a biofeedback program to increase her chances of success. Her doctor also recommended that Susan wear absorbent pads or panty liners specifically for urinary incontinence, so she could remain active and continue to race sailboats.

Susan does her Kegel exercises regularly and finds that they have really helped with her incontinence. She also finds that wearing absorbent products gives her the confidence to race boats and go jogging. She's getting back into shape and losing the pregnancy weight, and actively playing with her children. She feels great, and can't believe she ever thought incontinence would slow her down.

*Susan's story is based on people with similar experiences.

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