Talking with Others About Incontinence: 7 Important Tips

7 tips for talking with others about incontinence. 
How to start the conversation

Whether you are the person dealing with incontinence or a caregiver for someone who is, having a conversation about this intimate subject can be difficult.
You may be embarrassed or worry about how others will perceive you if you share the struggles you are having. If you are a caregiver for an aging parent who is in denial about their incontinence it can be even more difficult to bring up the subject. However, if you are looking for support or want to start the process of helping a loved one manage their incontinence then having a productive conversation about all aspects of incontinence from treatment to incontinence supplies is crucial.

Some important things to remember

There are certain things that can help to make the conversation easier whether you are asking for help and support or needing to have a loved one acknowledge the issue of incontinence. By taking these factors into consideration you can make sure the conversation about incontinence is as productive as possible.

  • Know your role. It important to understand your role in the conversation. If you are a caregiver offering direct care versus a concerned family member the conversation will be quite different. If you are asking for understanding for your own incontinence versus asking for help, again your role in the conversation will be different. By understanding your role in the conversation you can direct it to be as effective as possible. 
  • Understand who should do the talking. Sometimes relationships do not allow for this type of discussion. If this is true in your case then consider having a doctor or other health care provider guide the discussion. Many times individuals dealing with incontinence are more willing to listen to a trusted healthcare provider then a family member or caring friend. 
  • Have a set goal. No one wants to be embarrassed about their incontinence and caring friends and family members don’t want to make the situation any worse. Simply discussing the challenge of incontinence isn’t enough. Have a set goal in mind. Does the individual need to seek medical treatment? Does the individual need different incontinence products? By having a goal in mind then you can make sure the conversation is directed and productive. 
  • Pick the right time. There is no denying this can be an emotionally charged subject to discuss. Picking the right time to discuss incontinence and needed management strategies is critical to how successful the conversation will end up being. Avoid times of added stress, fatigue or other emotionally charged times in order to have a calm and productive conversation. 
  • Use the right tone. No one wants to be scolded or made to feel bad about incontinence. An understanding and gentle tone can go a long way to gaining understanding with whoever you are talking to. No matter how difficult you find it try to keep a normal, calm, and gentle tone when discussing incontinence with someone you care about or discussing your own issues and the help you need. 
  • Empathize with the person. Empathy shows while you may not completely understand, you do care. Let the other person know this can be a difficult issue to deal with but you will help however you can. This can go a long way toward gaining acceptance. 
  • Normalize the subject of incontinence. Whether you are dealing with your own incontinence or helping someone else try to normalize incontinence management. You can let other people know you are doing everything you can for your own incontinence. If you are a caregiver for someone with incontinence letting them know while this issue will be a part of the daily routine and will not be as disruptive as they fear can go a long ways to making incontinence management a lot easier for everyone involved. 
What’s the best product for me or my loved one?

It can be overwhelming to try and determine exactly what incontinence supplies you or the loved one in your care may need. There are more choices than ever before and they’re changing all the time. This creates even more confusion. There’s pull-on underwear for men, for women, for either; there’s boxers for men, adjustable underwear, briefs (adult diapers), pads for women, liners, guards for men, shields for men, underpads, chair pads, bed pads, undergarments, booster pads, swim pants, washable products, shaped pads, and soon bladder control inserts.

The Caregiver Partnership understands this confusion and have created an easy to use style guide which explains all the style options which can help you determine what incontinence products are right for you or you. You can also speak with one of their knowledgeable ladies and try samples before you buy ($3.49).

Get real help from real people.

Since 2004, The Caregiver Partnership has been helping women just like you. Unlike the big box stores which usually only offer 3 brands of incontinence products, The CareGiver Partnership shops the world over to find the best incontinence products - those used by consumers and professionals alike. They offer over 700 choices -- ten times more brands, styles, sizes and absorbencies than even the big box stores. And, they have knowledgeable Product Specialists you can speak with when you call 1-800-985-1353.

However, even when you have an idea of what incontinence products you are looking for it can still be overwhelming. That’s why the free & easy Incontinence Product Finder was developed. It saves you time, money and frustration by making it easy to sort through hundreds of products - fast. The video below explains how it works.

Learn more about The Incontinence Product Finder

Consumers wasting $130 buying incontinence products

Did you know those buying incontinence products for the first time waste $130 on average in trial and error mode trying to figure out what will work best for them. This is research from the makers of Depend and Poise. The CareGiver Partnership recognizes this and that’s why they provide online tools to help you select the best choice. They also have a team of Product Specialist who are expert on all the products offered and can send you samples ($3.49 each) to try before you buy. Questions? Call them at 1-800-985-1353.

Learn more about Try Before You Buy

Further Reading: 

The CareGiver Partnership offers one of the most comprehensive and largest family caregiver blogs available. With over 1 million readers there is valuable information on every subject applicable to caregiving and seniors. Click here to learn more.

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About The CareGiver Partnership. The CareGiver Partnership helps caregivers and their loved ones with answers to their caregiving questions, including information about home health care products and supplies, from our Wisconsin-based team of Product Specialists who are all current or former caregivers. The company’s Web site provides the largest online library of resources on subjects most important to caregivers — from arthritis to assisted living, and Parkinson’s to prostate cancer — as well as access to more than 3,000 home care products for incontinence, skin care, mobility, home safety and daily living aids. The CareGiver Partnership was founded in 2004 by Lynn Wilson of Neenah, Wisc. Visit to learn more or call 1-800-985-1353.


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