Think Incontinence is just for Grandma? Think again!

“I am too young to have these problems,” says a 70-year-old woman seeing me for pelvic floor physical therapy, when speaking of her personal struggle with urinary and bowel incontinence.  She went on to say it’s something that seems more appropriate to affect the “very elderly, like those in nursing homes.” This is ironic and sad in so many ways, but first goes to the frank ageism associated with pelvic floor disorders affecting continence.  EVERYONE thinks it is always an old lady’s problem, even when the person saying it is considered to be “older” by many peoples’ standards.

The truth is that incontinence affects children, adolescents, teens and women throughout the entire lifespan – not just those that have had babies or those that are “old.”  The further truth is that it is never “normal” – an unavoidable consequence of aging – and improvement or full resolution of symptoms is common with treatment.  My youngest patient for incontinence was 13, an athlete who couldn’t control her bladder during competitive running.  Sadly, she wasn’t alone.  She said that at least half of the girls on her team experienced similar problems.  Incontinence and other pelvic floor disorders do not discriminate based on age – they show up whenever there is a failing(s) in the complex machinery and control  systems in the body.  Many ages, many factors, many solutions, and never, never normal.

Visit the women’s bladder and bowel health section on for more information.

One thought on “Think Incontinence is just for Grandma? Think again!

  1. Hi there! I’ve suffered with incontinence for at least six years. The past 6 months has been the worst. Paid big bucks for a urologist to do testing and was told the same thing that my gyn told me…your options are physical therapy or surgery. I have stress incontinence. I decided to try a natural remedy. Magnesium was the remedy I decided to try mostly because it was the easiest to do/take. In three days my incontinence was gone! I’ve been able to walk my hour long steep hill walks without a pad/pads and I went on my first hike in 4 years without leakage (actually, had just a little bit but it didn’t even fill up a panty shield. I look forward to skiing with my husband and children this winter too! Blessings and check out magnesium! It’s the most important mineral for our body!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s