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Support for dealing with incontinence
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PostPosted: Fri May 03, 2019 5:24 pm 
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Joined: Tue Apr 12, 2016 4:30 pm
Posts: 112
Location: FI/PL
Well, I'd like to talk, as the headline suggests, about the difficulties persons with bladder and/or bowel issues deal with an office environment. I landed a job recently in a big company, and even though I am not planning to stay after my temporary contract expires (I have other projects in my home country) I have been mostly happy with the opportunity to experience a new job, a new cultre and to and learn new skills from a field that is new to me.

However, the open office environment and the three-week rotation of shifts does not make me happy as I have those bladder (and occasionally bowel) problems. I know that coffee is one reason to my plight, so I've tried reducing that , but I've also noticed I tend to drink too little water during the days and as a result my bladder gets irritated. However, if I drink water normally and as much as I should due to me being prone to kidney stones, I will go to the toilet even more often and our work and break time is closely monitored. Also, if I am having a call with a customer (and sometimes those can be very long calls [today I talked for nearly two hours straight]), I cannot go to the toilet. I usually go to the toilet at work every 1 hour or so and at the end of the day my diaper tends to be damp as I often leak after going to the toilet.

I've also noticed that sedentary work combined with too short lunch breaks tend to cause stomach cramps and explosive diarrhoea. Even though I exercise regularly (long walks, gym 3-4 times a week and hikes at the local hills + everyday excercise like numerous flights of stairs and walking a few kilometres everyday), my stomach is often quite upset. I've had two bowel accidents lately (at home door, luckily not at home or bus), although there have been close calls at work, especialyl during morning hours. My bowel activates only after I've been up for about two hours so at the time my work starts, I often have painful churning and roiling in my bowels and the situation is critical. Having to get up as early as 4 am to catch a bus does not help either. My bladder and stomach get stirred up when I need to "turn my clock".

What makes this so difficult at times at an office setting is the lack of privacy in the toilets (open-roofed stalls, no individual or special needs toilets available), the difficulty of scheduling toilet trips if the day is busy, the monitoring and the hassle of changing during the day or before leaving for home: my buses sometimes get stuck in the adternoon rush and I don't want to risk it with an already damp diaper. I am also worried at times that my diaper smells or gets more noticeable during the course of the day. I also work with people that are roughly my own age and I wouldn't be too happy about them finding out.

What can I do? Do you others have similar experiences from the office environment and how have you coped? Tips on changing when no truly private toilets are available? Do you think it would be wise to try some other form of protection instead of the all-in-ones I currently wear to work for discretion?

Thank you for your support!

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PostPosted: Fri May 03, 2019 7:52 pm 
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Joined: Tue Mar 12, 2019 1:15 pm
Posts: 68
Location: Germany
That sounds indeed some how complicated. For me it was maybe a litte bit easier because I was all-ready working a pretty long time in the company when my trouble had started. Short before I was coming back from the hospital I had a talk with our representative for people with disabilities. He help me for instance in that way that we got bins in the stalls. Luckily I have my own office and also no problems with "close monitoring" - at last not in the way that people sitting in my back and looking what I do. It's more that I have to deliver in time and budget. Most of my nearer collegues know meanwhile about my problem and things had become are pretty relaxed.

If I would go for a new job I would be open about my problem in the job interview. I don't think that this is a bigger problem because this "disability" don't hinder me to do my job as anybody else would do it without this problem - and if the company have a problem with it then it's not the right company for me... This give both parties a better understanding and you have the backing from HR if one of the bosses think you spent to much time on the toilet. If it comes to new colleagues I would't be that open. If someone ask me privat I would tell him about it, but it but this is nothing for a round of introduction.

For me it's more or less the same as for you, I go round about 8 times to the toilet over the working day but in this 3 years where I have this problem now no one had asked me why. I think most people don't care about it. There was only that pure guy who had started joking about the new bins in the stalls but after the show he never said word about it again and is very obliging to me ... :-)

More over I'd never tried to were pads or diapers over the whole day. In the first time I had to change the pad every two or three hours. Meanwhile it's mostly just for security. I still have to change sometimes in the morning when I arrive and the drive was to long, or sometimes I forget my timing while I'm in a meeting and have an accident because I mention it late but in this case I change and thats it. So I don't have to worry about leaks or smelling.

I'd learned not to worry that much about all this. In the end it's my live - and I have to cope with this dammed UIC. So I think I have all the right to to make it manageable for me. I do my best to hide my problem, but there are limits that are not made by me. I'm not sure - but in a situation where only half open stalls are available I think I would't care ether. If really a stupid idiot have nothing better to do as to stare over it I would exactly know what I have to do with him.

So my suggestion would be: Relax.

My experiance is: If you are good in what you are doing it matters litte if you have some special needs because in a working context the people will (normaly) respect you mostly for work. If not, then often not the special needs are the problem.


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PostPosted: Sat May 04, 2019 11:42 am 
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Joined: Thu Nov 02, 2017 11:59 am
Posts: 259
Location: Florida
wearing absorbent products and changing at work is stressful occurrence for everyone going through it! you are not alone there!, We all tend to find a way to manage eventually, things that can make it easier with the things you mentioned using a clothlike backed product may help with the changes in the daytime they are usually much quieter on removal and placement than plastic backed all-in-ones. I would suggest you invest in good PUL diaper covers as they can help on many items odor, noise, and leaks... when you go to change in the bathroom bring a plastic bag so you can disguise and cover any odor of the soiled product when you go to place it in the trash. Drink water as this helps keep odor reduced and is overall good for your system.
trying to go all day in the same product is not always the best course as odors can get strong over time, even if the product is capable of absorbing more fluid many products do not do a great job of containing and reducing odors effectively try changing the pad or brief at lunch and see how that works for you.

when it comes to bowel issues this becomes MUCh more tricky the best thing is to try to avoid accidents and that comes from bowel management I know you get up at 4 am to get to a bus and that makes things really hard but there are ways to train and manage the bowels that can help reduce accidents. I have IBS and to avoid issues I always get up an hour earlier than I need, drink some coffee and that usually triggers a movement, I also adjusted my diet to remove foods that trigger the accidents, you should try to find foods and things may make your gut uneasy. there are other helpful Bowel management techniques that work well but they are best taught by doctors and or Continence nurses so it would be best for you to seek out that information from experts.

it does get easier and you will find the tricks that work for you! it just takes a bit of time and some experiments and a bit of bravery to get over the worst part! most people will never know you use pads or breifs.

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PostPosted: Sat May 04, 2019 12:41 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 22, 2017 8:01 pm
Posts: 358
Location: Florida
My favorite trick is to use a premium pull-up (Abena Abri-Flex, Molicare Mobile, etc.) and a Male Guard pad. Once the pad is full it only takes a few seconds in the bathroom to remove it and add a new pad, plus there are virtually no "diaper sounds" to attract attention. Since the pads are fairly small it's easy to have one in your pocket on your way to the bathroom without attracting any attention. It's also easy to keep a small supply in a plastic bag in your desk. If you do run out of pads you can always just use the pull-up since a premium one will give protection for a void or two. As realworldic said be sure to take a folded up plastic bag with you to contain and disguise the removed pad.


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PostPosted: Sun May 05, 2019 8:35 am 
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Joined: Tue Apr 12, 2016 4:30 pm
Posts: 112
Location: FI/PL
Thanks for the tips!
It really helps to hear from more experienced people. I'm not new to incontinence problems, but a different environment really has given me challenges. I think I'll try that pull-up + pad combo this week as I don't have to get up as early as the two weeks before and have greater confidence in my bowels. It really could work, I think. I currently wear Molicare Mobiles to gym anyways, so perhaps I could "tune them up" a little for work. Would also make it easier to go to gym right after work, no "change trips" to home in between. I just have to buy guards/shields first.


BR

Ü.

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Linja-autojen ja rakkauden perässä voi juosta tai odottaa seuraavaa.


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PostPosted: Sun May 05, 2019 10:07 am 
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Joined: Wed Mar 22, 2017 8:01 pm
Posts: 358
Location: Florida
I use the Molicare Mobile pull-up for this combo and it works very well. One thing I forgot to say was to NOT remove the cover from the pads sticky tape (if it even has one) as this will make it much more difficult to remove without damaging the pull-ups inner layer. If you find the pad you are using moves around too much you can remove just a small portion of the tape covering and that may be all you need to keep it in place. This hasn't been a problem for me with Male Guards but as always you need to experiment to see what works for you. Please let us all know how it works out for you.


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PostPosted: Wed May 08, 2019 3:39 pm 
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Joined: Tue Apr 12, 2016 4:30 pm
Posts: 112
Location: FI/PL
Will be trying that guard trick tomorrow.
Got some Tena Level 3 Shields, my local medical supply shop was closed and the nearby pharmacy had onlt Tena's, but I think tehy will do fine. They are a bit big, but Molicare is roomy.

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PostPosted: Wed May 08, 2019 4:18 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 22, 2017 8:01 pm
Posts: 358
Location: Florida
Yes the Molicare Mobiles (and other premium pull-ups like Abena) are quite roomy and that is the key to this combination as they are big enough to completely contain the guard pad and catch any overflow. I'm in the US and I use the Assurance (WalMart) brand Male Guards but have also used Tena Guards and they seem pretty good too. The "Guards" have a lot of SAP and are really absorbent so I don't have to change the pads out too often, maybe two in eight hours, but of course your results may vary. Here what they call "Shields" are very thin and have little capacity but the terminology is so inconsistent, especially internationally, that the terms have very little meaning. Nonetheless I would use the highest capacity guard/pad/shield that's available. I hope this combo works well for you and please let us know how it's working for you.


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PostPosted: Tue May 14, 2019 1:29 pm 
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Joined: Tue Apr 12, 2016 4:30 pm
Posts: 112
Location: FI/PL
I bought the heaviest absorbency Tena Men shields and they worked very well with a pull-up (tried it yesterday). A it bulky in the front, perhaps, but less so than a diaper, even though Tena Slip Plus (my most used brand) is not super bulky in itself. Toilet visits were more pleasant as there was much less sounds with pull-ups and shields than an all-in-one with those tabs crackling. Today I went with a brief, though. My bladder was unpleasantly unpredictable and my stomach was upset due to bad sleep and a budding migraine. It might be necessary for me to stick mostly to all-in-ones with the problems I have but for easier days pull-up+shield is a very good combo!

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PostPosted: Tue May 14, 2019 2:15 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 22, 2017 8:01 pm
Posts: 358
Location: Florida
Uberaktive:
I'm glad to hear that my suggestion worked well for you. However, you are correct that there are many factors to take into account when choosing UIC protection and often a tape-up style diaper is the only thing that will give you confidence to not have a leak. With that in mind I always keep a good supply of pull-ups, pads, and tape-up diapers (all in several absorbencies) on hand to be able to cover any situation that may arise.


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