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Thread: Stress incontinence becoming more frequent…

  1. #1

    Smile Stress incontinence becoming more frequent…

    Hi, this is my first post I've read the forums in the past, but just recently joined the site.

    A little background: I wet the bed several times a week during high school, but this mostly stopped when I started college, although it sometimes still occurs when I drink beer/alcohol at night. I've always had to urinate frequently (every hour or two), and started experiencing slight stress incontinence a few years ago, about a year after I stopped wetting the bed. It only happened in small amounts when sneezing or stretching, until early last year when I began having to manage it with male guards… basically maxi-pads.

    I'm not sure if it's because I started to feel more secure knowing that I was padded, but in the past few months it's become increasingly frequent, to the point where I often leak when climbing stairs, bending over, standing up, sitting down… etc. It's still in small enough amounts to manage with pads, although I am having to change them more frequently. While I do have a small diaper fetish (I sometimes look forward to putting on a diaper when I drink a lot, and sometimes wear around my apartment when I'm relaxing by myself) I have no real desire to wear diapers any more often than I currently do.

    So, my question: Is it possible that my stress incontinence is becoming more frequent because I started using pads? I do feel that, before, I would actively focus during the day on holding my bladder when doing activities that might cause me to leak. I tried going without pads this past week to see if any control would come back and ended up having an accident a few hours into the first day that required changing clothes -- I definitely need some form of protection. My follow up question: There are situations (going out with friends, hiking, road trips) where changing pads every hour becomes impractical. I've considered pull-ups for these situations, but should I be concerned that I'll begin relying on them too much? I still have to make frequent trips to the restroom, even with the pads I'm currently using, so I don't want to slowly lose more control to the point of needing pull-ups in another year or two. I've also been apprehensive about wearing diapers to relax ever since I started needing pads to manage my stress incontinence… should I be doing everything I can to keep from worsening my incontinence, or should I try using pull-ups occasionally for the sake of convenience? I've already stopped drinking soda and coffee (which I miss) and it feels like I'm constantly concentrating on holding my bladder during the day, to the point where it's almost a distraction.

    TLDR: I think pull-ups make more sense than what I'm currently doing, but I'm nervous about acknowledging that I might need them, and even more nervous about the future possibility of actually needing them.

    Any thoughts / recommendations are very much appreciated, and thanks for reading my long post!

  2. #2


    Whereas my urologist did say that you mentally become comfortably with the protection and "don't try as hard", it definitely sounds like you have no choice regardless. I guess this is why urologists are frequently against diaper usage, as it represents "giving up" to them, but in my case (and many others) it's a choice that adds freedom and avoids drugs with bad side effects.

  3. #3


    My urologist never discussed how I was going to manage my incontinence. He just refered me to the continence service for practical help. The nurse was and still is great. She wasn't keen for me to go 24/7 as she said I would soon loose any control I had left. She agreed in the end it was me that had to live with IC and of course she was right I did fairly quickly become dependant on nappies. I now have very little feeling and am usually wetting before I realise the need to go.

  4. #4


    Quote Originally Posted by ST50 View Post
    and of course she was right I did fairly quickly become dependant on nappies
    That's what I'm afraid of :/ But did you begin to consciously use the nappies once you began wearing them? My issue is that small leaks have become too frequent to continue using pads in some situations. I've never had a daytime accident where my entire bladder emptied, even though my stress incontinence has slowly become more frequent (but not severe). So I guess I'm looking for reassurance that using pull-ups instead of pads in some or even most situations won't somehow increase my reliance on protection if I still try to use the toilet as often as possible, before going for longer walks or climbing stairs, etc.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by PlotTwist View Post
    Whereas my urologist did say that you mentally become comfortably with the protection and "don't try as hard", it definitely sounds like you have no choice regardless. I guess this is why urologists are frequently against diaper usage, as it represents "giving up" to them, but in my case (and many others) it's a choice that adds freedom and avoids drugs with bad side effects.
    I haven't discussed the increased frequency with a urologist, but my general practitioner knows about my past bedwetting. When my stress incontinence became more frequent last year we agreed that I could wear absorbent guards and see a urologist if it persisted. I'll see if he can recommend someone, but I don't have another appointment until December. So I'm open to any advice from other incontinent people in the forums that might be helpful until then. :-) I'll probably try some sort of pull-up over the next few months and monitor how much I notice myself using them, I can always switch back to pads if I feel like I'm beginning to rely on the pull-ups too much.

  5. #5


    We can get so much advice and it is always worrying until you get to the point where you have a firm diagnosis - or sometimes have to accept that there is no clear causation to be identified.

    The key for me has been managing the incontinence as effectively as possible and this includes following advice, exercising as much control as possible,but not beating myself up if I am not aware of the pee leakage or have a uncontrollable bowel movement.

    Lots of us find that inco is variable,not a constant state and although it is tempting to feel bucked by what seems to be improvement the flip side is that it then feels devastating if things get worse. Better to accept what you cannot control and treat good days as a bonus.

  6. #6


    Thanks for reminding me that it's variable, it definitely helps to remember at times when it's worse that there will still be good days to look forward to. How much control do you have at this point? I'm still trying to exercise as much control as possible, but I decided to stop stressing so much about what might happen and take steps to manage what is happening. So I went ahead and bought pull-ups yesterday… today's been my first day wearing them. It's not as big of a deal as I thought it would be; I was out with friends all afternoon, and not having to change pads every hour was a really nice change of pace. I kept worrying that I was going to have a leak, but the pull-ups are more than enough protection for my current level of incontinence. Even though I'll probably still try to use pads most of the time, I think I might start drinking coffee and soda again, since I know now that I can just wear a pull-up if I end up wetting too frequently for pads.

  7. #7


    I have to dai if you're combatant changing pads by the hour, your incontinence sounds more severe than what you've lead on to. I think that male guards typically hold about a cup I believe? You may want to try heavier pullups. Especially if you intend to start consuming caffeine, it'll make it worse.

  8. #8


    Quote Originally Posted by MeTaLMaNN1983 View Post
    if you're combatant changing pads by the hour, your incontinence sounds more severe than what you've lead on to
    I've only had maybe half a dozen small leaks with the guards/pads since I started using them, but I'm still really self-conscious about having to wear them, so I probably change pads more often than I need to. I had coffee for the first time in six months this morning and wore a pull-up to the grocery store, it was definitely more saturated than pads would have been in the same amount of time, but I was wearing it for four or five hours. I'm going to keep wearing pads for now whenever I'm home, but so far I'm definitely liking the pull-ups for when I'm out during the day. The ones I bought were just from CVS, but I'll order some better ones online once I start to run low (I bought forty of them at CVS). I know the Tranquility pull-ups are pretty popular, but do you have any other recommendations? The more discrete the better, but I'd also like something that will last 6-8 hours with my level of incontinence… I'd guess that I'm wetting about half a cup every hour, maybe 3/4 cup if I drink caffeine. :/ Four or five cups seems like a lot for a single pull-up, but I know the diapers I had to wear for bedwetting would hold nearly two liters. I'll probably spend some time looking through the forums when I get ready to order, but any advice to point me in the right direction would be helpful

  9. #9


    you really might want to see a urologist to determine if there is anything you can do, I mean if its getting worse... it can get much worse... to the point that "the thiner the better" is going to be more "The thiner the more leaks I have"
    Last edited by rennecfox; 07-Aug-2016 at 20:25.

  10. #10


    It may be your wearing pads and feeling more secure and releasing more, or it could be a health problem,
    I'd see a urologist anyway. They don't care if your wearing a oversize adult diaper or a maxi, their there to offer medical advice, so you can be honest.
    I'm 24/7 IC, I love wearing my diapers but I'd also like to have some control. anytime I go to do anything like the mall, movies, dinning out and of corse with girlfriends I have to stop and go change.... it can get old.
    Get and appointment with a urologist and since you have to stay padded, try to enjoy it, it makes all the difference.

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