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For caregivers helping an elderly loved one, incontinence is often a difficult challenge. Here are five tips for getting ahead of it.

1. Open up communication

Although it may be a tough or embarrassing topic, it’s important to know that incontinence is normal. According to the National Association for Continence, “one-third of men and women ages 30-70 have experienced loss of bladder control at some point in their adult lives.”With honest, open communication you and your loved one can improve daily routines, for both of you.

2. Seek treatment early

Be your loved one’s advocate. Incontinence is not necessarily a symptom of aging, but is often a symptom of another medical condition. By working with a doctor to diagnose underlying conditions, your loved one can receive the most effective treatment to reduce symptoms. Discuss any concerns with your loved one before the appointment so that together, you can prepare a list of questions for the doctor. The doctor may ask for additional information on your loved one’s medical and lifestyle history in order to make the correct diagnosis. If your loved one’s doctor does not explore the possibility of other causes, help your loved one see another doctor.

3. Be patient

Once you’ve found and met with a doctor to explore treatment for incontinence, it may take a period of time for that treatment to be effective. In the meantime, you may need to help your loved one find the right incontinence product, such as adult underwear.

4. Find the right incontinence product

Incontinence products will vary depending on absorbency levels and form. For light bladder leakage, the Poise® brand offers expert protection in pads for women to help keep them dry and comfortable; and the Depend® brand offers guards and shields for men. For those who suffer from heavy bladder leakage, incontinence underwear such as Depend® FIT-FLEX® or Depend® Silhouette® is a great option.

5. Save time and money by buying in bulk

Supporting a loved one with incontinence can become time consuming and expensive. Once you’ve found the product that works best, look to buy it in bulk to avoid frequent trips to the store. Costco and Costco.com carry bulk packs of both Depend® and Poise® incontinence products at an exceptional value.

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