Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Aging Health Issues- Avoid Making Incontinence Worse

No one likes to talk about incontinence. It's on the list of hush-hush topics that people just don't discuss. Don't worry. I won't tell your friends that you're reading this blog. However, I do want you to keep reading and learn about ways that you're really making your bladder control issues worse than they have to be. It's obvious that drinking too much will agitate the situation, but there are other issues that you might not know about when it comes to controlling your incontinence.

Caffeine: This means coffee, tea, soda, and even chocolate are your enemy. Caffeine is a bladder irritant and a diuretic, which means it is only going to make your incontinence worse. Reduce your intake or eliminate it completely from your diet if you can.

Spicy Cuisine: Spicy food might be your favorite, but it probably isn't a favorite of your bladder. Certain spices, such as curry, chili pepper, and cayenne can agitate the bladder and make incontinence worse. If you eat something and notice it aggravates your condition, don't eat it anymore.

Citrus: Everyone tells you to get more fruit and vegetables in your diet, but when you suffer from incontinence, that might be a bad idea. Acidic foods and juices are irritating to the bladder, and since the fruits are mostly water, they can increase fluid intake without you noticing.

Medications: You can't stop taking your medications just because they make it harder to control your bladder. However, you should keep an eye on medications that might be contributing to the condition so that you can let your doctor know.

Dealing with incontinence is about knowing what is making the issue worse. You don't have to discuss it with your friends or compare symptoms and irritants, but you should be educating yourself and talking to your doctor so that you can get the relief that you deserve. You can do a lot more to alleviate this embarrassing issue than you might realize. Take the time to learn about ways to prevent and reduce your incontinence so that you can enjoy life more and spend less time worrying. You can read more about your health at my senior safety and health blog.

Mary Albert is a health advocate and blogger at Lifestyle Health Guide. She blogs regularly on senior health issues and medical alert devices.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Antidepressants for Hot Flashes?- Looking for Alternatives to HRT?

Menopause and post-menopause is a rough time. Most doctors recommend hormone replacement therapy (HRT) to help alleviate the symptoms of menopause. While it is effective, there are many different side effects and issues that come up with hormone replacement therapies that make them undesirable for so many people. Hot flashes and other symptoms are difficult to deal with and finding the best treatment is difficult for some women. At our age, we deserve to enjoy life. I've tried HRT and quite frankly, I didn't like the effects that it gave me. I chose to stop taking the treatments and found natural solutions to deal with my issues.

According to a new study, the antidepressant desvenlafaxine was shown to help control hot flashes in the women involved in the study. A lot of women can't take estrogen and other hormone treatments. Some simply don't like the way that the HRT works. In either situation, having a better alternative is going to help a lot of people. Within 12 weeks, many women saw a 62% reduction in their hot flashes and other symptoms after taking the anti-depressant. While it is effective to take hormone therapies, some women prefer the use of this medication because it offers better solutions with fewer adverse effects.

HRT is also not an option for women who have or have a risk of breast cancer, which is what sparked the search for better alternatives for menopause relief. As it turns out, many different forms of antidepressants can actually help alleviate the hot flashes for women who need an alternative to traditional treatments. These medications are often used for health issues outside of depression, so this news isn't exactly surprising to many people. However, the use of antidepressants to treat menopausal symptoms is definitely going to help many women who are looking for something different.

Studies are still ongoing and in time things will likely get better in time, but for now this health science advance is enough for some people.

Mary Albert is a health advocate and blogger for Lifestyle Health Guide, where she contributes regularly on topics like senior aging, health news, and medical alerts.