Caregivers' Frequently Asked Questions
Caring for a loved one with incontinence is bound to bring out lots of issues for discussion. Here you'll find the most caregiver facts requested by people in this situation.
Is there help with the financial side of caring for a loved one with incontinence?
Yes there is. Each situation is unique, depending on whether your loved one experiences any other health issues, but the most common sources of support are the following:
- Health insurance
- Private insurance
- Government programs
- Community-based programs
Where can I find the best source of information and help on caring for loved ones with incontinence?
First, take a good look around the TENA website: we've gathered together lots of information from healthcare professionals and home caregivers looking after a relative or friend at home.
How does the bladder work?
Every time you eat or drink, your body absorbs liquids. Your kidneys' job is to filter waste products from these fluids and make urine. A continuous trickle passes from the kidneys to the bladder, which slowly expands. When the bladder is full a signal goes to the brain indicating the need to go to the bathroom. Once the bathroom is reached, the brain tells the large bladder muscle to squeeze and contract. At the same time it tells the support muscles (or pelvic floor muscles) that surround the urethra (the outlet from the bladder) to relax and let the urine pass.
How often do most people empty their bladder?
It really depends on things like your build, age, diet and level of activity, but the rough average is 4 to 8 times during the day, and the occasional need to go during the night.
If the person I care for drinks less fluid will things improve?
No. Taking in less fluid will make their urine more concentrated, which will in turn irritate their bladder, causing them to urinate more often. You should encourage them to try and drink their usual amount or whenever they feel thirsty. However, it's not recommended that they drink excessive amounts either, as this could lead to distension of the bladder.
What TENA® product should I use?
This will depend on the physical and mental condition of the person you are caring for. The right products can considerably increase user comfort and reduce the number of changes required. We have a comprehensive range of products designed for different care needs.
How do I dispose of TENA® products?
TENA® products should be disposed of in a trash can; they are not designed to be flushed away. Keeping a lidded trash can in the bathroom or bedroom will make changing and disposal more convenient.
Where can I go for more advice?
If you want further advice, answers to frequently asked incontinence questions or caregiver facts, please call the TENA advice line at 1-866-ASK-TENA or you can call The Canadian Continence Foundation at (705) 750-4600. It is always a good idea to let your doctor know you are experiencing bladder problems.