Men and urinary incontinence
Of the 25 million Americans that are affected by urinary incontinence, 20 – 20% are men. Overall, men are less likely to have incontinence than women. But they are more prone to certain kinds of incontinence, especially if they’ve had problems with their prostate.
Symptoms of urinary incontinence in men
- Urge to use the bathroom, even if your bladder isn’t full
- Need to urinate more frequently than usual
- Waking up during the night frequently to urinate
- Pain when you use the bathroom
- Difficulty producing a urine stream
- Urinating while asleep
Causes of incontinence in men
There are a number of causes of urinary incontinence in men. In general, some common causes of accidental leakage include the following:
- Weakened bladder muscles (caused by another condition such as diabetes)
- Medical conditions such as Parkinson’s, multiple sclerosis
- Prostate problems
- There may not be a definite cause
Please note: You should talk to your doctor if you have any concerns about leakage.
Incontinence products for men
Guards: These can be inserted into your regular underwear for light to moderate leakage absorbency.
Mesh or knit pant: Designed to be used with a pad or liner – these reusable, washable pants hold the pad in place.
Protective underwear: Like regular underwear, these products pull on and off and can absorb moderate to heavy leakage.
Adult briefs: Also called diapers, these briefs have tabs on the sides so they’re easy to put on and remove. Available in a wide range of absorbencies.
Belted undergarments: For added security, belted undergarments offer moderate to heavy incontinence protection.
Underpads: To keep urine from damaging wheelchairs, beds and furniture, underpads can be used to absorb leakage and reduce odor.
Managing urine output
External catheter: Called a condom catheter, this type of catheter fits over the penis like a condom so urine flows into a leg bag or bedside drainage collector.
Intermittent catheters: An individual or caregiver can insert an intermittent catheter at certain times throughout the day (as instructed by a doctor) to drain the bladder of urine; the catheter does not remain in the bladder.
Indwelling (Foley) catheters: Indwelling catheters can remain in the bladder for longer periods of time and empty into a urine collection device. These catheters have a small balloon at the insertion end, which after insertion is inflated with a small amount of water to hold the catheter in place within the bladder. Indwelling catheters may be kept insider the bladder for one month before being changed. A health care professional will insert and remove an indwelling catheter.