FROM THE EDITOR'S PEN
/ Seeking Out The Clues
The September-October edition of
Today’s Caregiver magazine contains our annual
incontinence special focus. We started running this
focus many years ago (as well as our upcoming
Best practices: Incontinence Care webinar)
because of how life altering incontinence can be for
a family caregiver.
Incontinence affects 13 million people in the
United States alone and is one of the primary
reasons for long-term care placement. Yet, just as
with the first signs of memory challenges which so
often are the result of medications, stress or
reasons other than the onset of Alzheimer’s disease,
incontinence may actually be treatable if a proper
diagnosis is made in time.
In some instances, incontinence may be due to
weakening of the pelvic walls which might be
alleviated with proper exercise; the culprit may be
medications that our loved ones are taking, the food
they eat, what they drink, and any combination of
those things. The first rule for any Fearless
Caregiver is not to take the easy answer. Make sure
that an assessment is made by a specialist with a
lot of experience dealing with incontinence. If you
are told that it is just a side effect of aging,
find a new doctor and get a second opinion.
Once incontinence is a suspect, you need to don
your Sherlock Holmes Burberry cloak, call Watson,
grab your magnifying glass and follow your own
instincts to discover the truth about your options.