By Jessica Powley, PT, DPT
My poor fiancé, Andrew, probably gets frustrated with me when we watch TV at night… I get SO mad. Really mad and sassy. I am passionate about women’s health. I love what I do. I love helping people get back to optimal function. So, I get mad. Really mad. At TV shows like Strange Sex that convey Vaginismus as a rare musculoskeletal disorder that requires thousands of dollars for treatment. At movies that portray women as sexual objects that fulfill a need rather than the perfect beautiful individuals that they are. And at commercials for urinary incontinence pads. Ooooh, those really get to me. You know the ones, the pretty young girl who wears white pants and frolics in a field while they make you feel like leaking urine is super cool and normal and you just need an awesome pad to make you feel fantastic while you LEAK URINE. Like this one. Check it out:
Yes, she’s right. Close to 1 in 3 women leak urine. That’s a huge number. And I agree, we need to talk about it. Women need to know that leaking urine is common. BUT, what irks me, is the last sentence the woman says, “I’m fine with it.” REALLY!? You are fine with it? You don’t mind at all that you leak urine on yourself during the day? You don’t mind that you have to spend $$$$ dollars buying pads to help protect against leakage?? “Fine with it.” I don’t think so.
You should not have to be fine with it. I spend half my day telling women that common does not equal normal. Leaking urine is not normal. It is not fun. It does not make people feel “fine.” Let’s be honest about a problem where there is a problem. Leaking urine is not okay.
Now, I do believe the “stigma” should be removed from bladder leakage. It is true that it is common. I have treated women who are co-workers and they will literally have no idea that someone who works next to them has the same problem. (This has happened twice in the past year!). BUT, removing the stigma needs to come with taking action. Ladies, we need to take control of our lives and do something about it. Talk to your physician about the problems you are having! Come see one of us to help you regain the muscular control you need for your bladder! Become an advocate for your own health! Do not be “fine with it.” Get a helping hand, and get going today!
Need help on knowing how to get started? Check out these recent posts:
We want to hear from you! What TV shows/ads really “irk” you? Let us know in the comments!