Quit those bad habits
Everyone knows that Christmas is the busiest time of year, so what a great time to knock that bad habit! With plenty to buy, wrap, cook and plan, you’ll be kept busy and distracted, making it the perfect opportunity to stop smoking. And with the likelihood of snowfall sometime soon, the icy weather is creeping in, so we’re sure that everybody would rather be warm and cosy inside, than stood out in the cold unnecessarily.
Smoking often plays a big factor in incontinence, so by cutting down or even quitting full stop, you are more likely to reduce your inability to control your bladder. I know what a lot of you might be thinking… “I don’t suffer from incontinence, I’m fine”. Well, unfortunately we can’t think like this. The NHS estimates that between 3 and 6 million people suffer from incontinence in the UK alone, and your chances of facing this problem only get higher as you age. Therefore, you should never assume you won’t face it at some point in your life. If you quit those bad habits it not only reduces incontinence if you already suffer from it, but it is a great way to prevent it in the future.
Caffeine is another thing that we seem to over indulge in over Christmas, and although it is nice to have a hot drink to warm you up, you should probably try and cut down for many reasons. Similar to nicotine, caffeine irritates the bowels, which won’t benefit you if you are trying to prevent incontinence. We aren’t saying that you can’t have the odd can of coke or festive gingerbread latte from Starbuck’s now and then, but really the less you have the better. We recommend buying caffeine free products if you can, and trying to replace your bad habits with water. It may not have the same taste but you should really notice a difference. Smoking also tends to cause coughing, and long-term chronic coughing has been considered a risk factor for developing stress urinary incontinence and/or pelvic organ prolapse. This is yet another reason why you need to quit those bad habits!
Recently there have been efforts to make people more aware of the health issues that smoking and caffeine cause, and although incontinence is one of the least mentioned problems, it doesn’t mean that it isn’t as important to consider. Personally we don’t feel there is any better reason to add nicotine patches to your Christmas list!