Medical Alerts for Seniors with Poor Bladder Control

Medical Alerts for Seniors with Poor Bladder Control

time icon 5 min read update icon Sept. 28, 2019


Poor bladder control causes the sufferer to leak urine or suffer complete incontinence. Bladder problems can occur in both males and females due to a variety of conditions.

Poor Bladder Control Overview

The bladder holds and stores urine. When full, the muscles relax and allow the urine to flow out of the body. People with poor bladder control lack the ability to hold the urine. It is estimated that 13 million Americans suffer from bladder control problems. As many as one in five people over the age of 40 have varying degrees of incontinence. Women tend to suffer more from the disorder.

Childbirth, menopause, weak muscles, excessive weight gain, infections, substance abuse, nerve damage, prostate problems and certain diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease and multiple sclerosis may all cause poor bladder control in seniors. Some medications can also cause bladder control problems.

Poor Bladder Control Impairment

Poor bladder control can occur at any time, and can be an embarrassing experience if the sufferer is not prepared. Commercial pads and adult diapers may all help hide a leaking bladder. Many people who suffer from the condition avoid going out in public or getting too far from a bathroom.

  • Sudden urge to go to the bathroom
  • Inability to stop or control urine
Medical Alert Benefits

Although lack of bladder control is normally not a medical emergency, many sufferers experience underlying health conditions that can require immediate emergency assistance. Bladder control problems typically strike seniors who suffer from varying degrees of arthritis and mobility issues. The disorder can also occur as a result of Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer’s disease and multiple sclerosis.

When a senior starts to feel that they need to empty their bladder, they may rush to get to the bathroom. Arthritis and other diseases often make the senior unsteady and prone to falling. Frequently visiting the bathroom can also weaken a senior and make it difficult to safely sit or rise from the toilet. If a fall should occur, a senior can quickly summon for help using a medical alert system.

Bladder control symptoms:

  • Leaking urine
  • Sudden urge to go
  • Urine loss when laughing, coughing or sneezing
Safety Without Medical Alerts

A senior who experiences frequent bladder control problems can opt to live their life without medical alerts, but they should take a few steps to ensure their safety. There are several steps that they can take to avoid an accident.

  • Sudden urge to go: The sudden urge to go may make you jump up and hurry to the bathroom. Having a walker or a cane handy will provide you with stability and help prevent a possible fall.
  • Frequent bathroom visits: Seniors with bladder control problems often spend an excessive amount of time sitting on the toilet. Having a safety toilet frame installed helps you stand and sit without falling. You may also want to have handrails installed for additional assistance.
  • Middle-of-the-night bathroom trips: In the middle of the night, it may difficult to get up and go to the bathroom. Having a safety stand/assist placed beside the bed will help you rise from the bed. You may also want to have voice or motion activated lights installed so you are not walking to the bathroom in the dark.
Bladder Control Precautions
  • Leaking urine: There are numerous commercial brands of pads and adult diapers that can absorb leaks and keep them from wetting your clothing.
  • Avoid inactivity: Activity often causes bladder leaks in susceptible individuals, but living an inactive lifestyle is not wise. Pelvic floor muscles play a key role in bladder control, so exercising may actually reduce the incidences of bladder leaks.
  • Medication: Many physicians provide prescription medication to control the sudden urge to empty your bladder. You should always take all medication according to your physician's directions.
Bladder Control Medical Alerts Conclusion

Living with bladder control problems is never easy. These issues are usually a sign of a more serious underlying health condition. In some cases, they go hand in hand with arthritis or other diseases that threaten your safety. Having a medical alert system in place to summon help will provide you with peace of mind.

Kimberly Sharpe - Senior Advisor

Kimberly is senior researcher with Grandfolk® providing in-depth product and service reviews to empower senior buying decisions.