Urinary Incontinence (UI) can be a difficult subject to talk about. Many men associate it with embarrassment, being emasculated and losing their dignity. But why does it have to be that way?
Statistics vary, but it is estimated that about 200 million people worldwide are affected by this issue and one-third of men and woman ages 30-70 have experienced loss of bladder control at some point in their adult lives. In the US alone, 25 million adults experience transient or chronic UI. In many cases these figures may even be an under estimate because two-thirds of men and women age 30-70 have never even discussed bladder health with their doctor.
So why is it, given the scope of this issue, that incontinence is still considered taboo? Other subjects have come out of the closet – why not UI?
Take erectile dysfunction as an example. It’s estimated that more than 18 million men in the United States over age 20 are affected by erectile dysfunction. Not so long ago this topic was considered hush-hush and embarrassing. However, erectile dysfunction is now considered less taboo and many men openly talk to their doctors and family members out this issue. The change in mindset could be attributed to the increase in marketing dollars spent on raising awareness about erectile dysfunction. Just think about all the TV commercials and magazine articles you see for products such as Viagra, Cialis and others. It seems that the world has accepted the idea that erectile dysfunction is a big problem that many men experience and are now comfortable openly talking about it.
Urinary incontinence products are not far behind, advertisements for home delivery adult pads and external catheters are on the rise; as well as magazine advertisements. Online support groups and networking sites dedicated to helping men find a solution that works best for them are also growing on a daily basis.
So I think the time has come for a change in the way we think about men with urinary incontinence. Let me just say this, urinary incontinence should not be viewed as embarrassing. It’s just another medical condition. No different than erectile dysfunction. Some men will experience it during their lifetime, others won’t. But there is no reason you should feel embarrassed to seek help or talk about it. The stigma associated with UI will never go away if no one talks about it.
That’s all I have for today. If you have any comments, suggestions or feedback please leave them in comments section below. I would love to hear your take on why you think incontinence is still such a hush-hush topic. As always thanks for reading and have a great day!