Incontinence: No Laughing Matter

Photo: Jenny Roberts - Continence Nurse Advisor
Friday, 23 June 2017
Portland District Health is hoping World Continence Week will prompt more people to overcome unnecessary embarrassment and seek help with their continence problems.

PDH's Continence Nurse Advisor Service deals with all bladder and bowel problems in adults and children.

However, Continence Nurse Advisor Jenny Roberts said many people remain reluctant to seek help.

It's an area nobody wants to talk about, Ms Roberts said. Even when children wet the bed parents don't want to talk about it. They think it's not accepted by society so it stays a hidden issue.

Naturally this is something Ms Roberts wants to turn around.

It's a bigger problem than people admit to. Absolutely people need to get over any embarrassment and talk about the issues, she said.

Most times we can solve the problem and if not we encourage the client to seek further help.

No specialist referrals are needed and all consultations are confidential.

This year's World Continence Week is June 19-25. The theme, Incontinence: No laughing matter, tackles a common response by people to laugh off incontinence, accepting it as an inevitable part of childbirth or ageing, not a health issue requiring specialist treatment.

The Continence Foundation has developed a poster promoting the no laughing matter message, urging people to treat incontinence seriously and to seek help. The poster is 9on display around PDH.

One in three women who have had a baby will have a continence issue but Ms Roberts said most problems can be fixed. It could be something as simple as doing pelvic floor exercises, she said. Seventy per cent of women who did these exercises would notice improvements.

Ms Roberts is a qualified continence advisor and has been working in the field for seven years.

The Portland District Health Continence Nurse Advisor Service offers support for people of all ages to address continence issues.

The confidential continence service can be contacted at the PDH consulting suites on PH: 5521 0653.

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