People who experience urinary incontinence often rely on disposable briefs or washable underwear for protection. However, Jean Rintoul, CEO of startup Lir Scientific, is offering another method: Brightly, a wearable device that senses bladder expansion and alerts when it’s time to use the bathroom.
Equipped with non-invasive biosensors, Brightly resembles a belt and is worn around the user’s abdomen. When the bladder fills up, the device uses Bluetooth to send a reminder – a choice of sound or vibration – to the wearer’s smartphone to use the bathroom. The device has a swappable battery for long-time use.
One in five women will undergo pelvic floor surgery in her lifetime, according to a new study from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. This nearly doubles the risk of the surgery in the 1990s.
Pelvic floor surgery is common for women who experience urinary incontinence (involuntary bladder leakage) or pelvic organ prolapse (when the pelvic organs protrude or fall out of place). Many women who experience these problems are hesitant to go to the doctor’s because they feel embarrassed or think that it’s normal. In turn, they suffer in silence for years, causing the problem to get even worse.
“I am several weeks post-partum and I’m having trouble controlling my bladder. I’ve heard about exercises I can do but I’m not sure what they are. Can you please help me?”
Many women who experience pregnancy and childbirth will also experience some type of urinary incontinence. This is caused by several factors, including excessive weight gain, pressure from the developing baby and strain from pushing during birth. Some women may leak without any warning, while others will unexpectedly wet themselves when they sneeze, laugh or do some sort of physical activity (stress incontinence). In most cases, the loss of bladder control is temporary, lasting several weeks to several months.
If you’re experiencing bladder control problems, you may have been told to “do your kegels” without getting any explanation on how to do them or exactly what they are.
Kegels are exercises that help strengthen the pelvic floor, which supports the bladder and bowel. If the pelvic floor is damaged or weakened, you might start experiencing fecal or urinary incontinence. Men might dribble after urination, while women may leak a little when sneezing or coughing. Common reasons why people may experience such urinary control problems include childbirth, menopause, heavy lifting, medication, constipation or prostate surgery.
What are vaginal weights?
Vaginal weights, or cones, are training aids that help locate and strengthen pelvic floor muscles that may have been weakened due to pregnancy, childbirth, medication or age. Vaginal weights come in 5-6 different weights starting at less than one ounce.
Who should use vaginal weights?
Women, who are suffering from urinary incontinence, or have an uncontrollable bladder, are advised to use vaginal weights. Pelvic floor weights should not be used during menstruation, intercourse, pregnancy, or if you have pelvic pain or an infection.