According to the Cleveland Clinic, urinary incontinence plagues 10% of American women under the age of 65 and 35% of American women over 65. The percentage of women facing incontinence in nursing homes and skilled care facilities is as great as 30 to 50% of those residents. Meanwhile, the rate of incontinence for men is 1.5% for those under 65 and around 22% of those over 65. For young or active women, living a life restricted by urinary incontinence can be a challenge. Making sure to always be in close proximity to a restroom can prevent engaging in many of the normal activities of an active daily life.
9. Anatomy of the Pelvic Floor
The pelvic floor is made up of a group of muscles and tissues that form a hammock to support the bladder, uterus, and colon. Furthermore, the urethra, the vagina, and the rectum all have passageways through the muscles of the pelvic floor. Therefore, any damage to or weakening of the pelvic muscles can cause issues with urination, bowel movements, and sexual functioning.
8. Stigma Attached to Incontinence
While more than 10% of the female population suffers from some variety of urinary incontinence, this issue is not widely talked about. The fear of accidents and embarrassment keeps many women from sharing their struggles. In fact, a 2004 study in the Journal of Women’s Health found that less than half of the women suffering from urinary incontinence were able to comfortably broach the subject with their physicians. As new treatments and better products become available, it is critical for women to feel comfortable enough to seek the help they need to deal with this health issue.