Link October 2018 Volume 27 Issue 5 - Page 46

Continence and Personal Care Dr Irmina Nahon, works as a pelvic floor physiotherapist in private practice. Continence: more than a ‘wee’ problem Continence is something that can be taken for granted, but when control over the bladder or the bowel is not good, life can be majorly changed. Dr Irmina Nahon, Assistant Professor at the University of Canberra, has been helping people manage bladder and bowel function for more than 15 years. She shares her expertise with Link. O ne young man who done to improve or manage the damaged his spinal cord situation. Continence or pelvic floor bladder and bowel care, look for once told me: “I can physiotherapists and continence therapists who have done special manage my wheelchair and get nurse specialists are specially trained training in this field. Not every around, and everyone understands to assess and treat bladder and physiotherapist is comfortable talking that I can’t stand up. However, when bowel function. about this. the carer doesn’t come in to help me The Australian Physiotherapy with my bowel routine in the morning, pelvic floor exercises, but treatment Association ‘find a physio’ website I can’t use my wheelchair to go out. If can be much wider. I advise on ( I soil myself the clean up is enormous, developing good bladder and bowel can point you in the direction and the smell seems to stay in the habits, toilet training for children (and of someone with post graduate fabric of the chair. And no one really sometimes adults) with special needs, qualifications who will do a careful understands that!” and developing routines that allow assessment and talk to you about increased independence away from your options. Incontinence is a hidden disability that affects many. One in three women and one in eight men the toilet. Continence nurse specialists The Continence Foundation of Australia can help you to locate your have a problem with urine leaking can help with bowel management nearest continence advisor as well as or bowels causing soiling. These where due to neurological damage providing many resources. You can numbers are much higher in people the bowel does not empty normally. call them on the National Continence with disability. They also have advice on continence Helpline on 1800 330 066. Help is aids and skin care, and also work with available! People do not like talking about 46 Most women have heard about When looking for help to manage it. But once they do, they find occupational therapists, dieticians out that there is a lot that can be and sometimes social workers. continence and personal care