STEP 2: ASSESS YOUR CONDITION
Incontinence can happen for many reasons, and may take on different forms. You may have bladder incontinence, or fecal incontinence. It may stem from an injury or trauma, or a medical condition. It may be severe, or mild. Regardless of why you have incontinence, knowing where you stand is the first step to making improvements in your condition. Take some time (1 week) to really pay attention to the type of incontinence you have, and learn the things that trigger it.
If you have bladder incontinence: Download the NAFC Bladder Diary.
If you have fecal incontinence: Download the NAFC Bowel Diary.
WEEK 1: TRACK YOUR HABITS WITH A BLADDER OR BOWEL DIARY
Be sure to use the bladder/bowel diary faithfully for 1 week. The diary helps you keep track of the types of foods and fluids you are consuming, the amount, the number of times you visited the restroom, if you had any leakage, etc. It also tracks your activities to see what types of things might be triggering your incontinence (ie., running after you have just consumed a bottle of water.) Consistency is key here and it’s important to fill out the diary every day for 1 week so you can start to see an accurate picture of your condition.
WEEK 2: WATCH FOR YOUR BLADDER OR BOWEL TRIGGERS
Once you learn the types of things that trigger your incontinence, you’ll be able to make modifications to your diet/activities, which may help tremendously. Continue to keep track of your bladder/bowel health for another week as you make modifications so you can see what changes are having an effect.