Incontinence is more common than people might assume. It has been reported that a quarter of men over the age of 40 experience some form of urine leakage. Although washrooms have come a long way in terms of accessibility in recent years, do they always offer a dignified experience for male incontinence sufferers?
There are various causes of incontinence, ranging from health conditions such as increased pressure on the bladder from obesity, neurological conditions and connective tissue disorders, to environmental factors such as inaccessible or unsafe toilet facilities.
When looking at male and female washrooms, male washrooms will typically have less separate cubicles within them, and therefore less private space to dispose of sanitary waste. Female washrooms will typically have a sanitary bin in each cubicle where waste can be disposed of, whereas the lack of cubicles in male washrooms means a reduced number of bins – and any that are present may be in the wider washroom area, where discrete disposal is not possible.
It’s time to break the stigma
Incontinence is an issue that appears to lack awareness and is one that can negatively impact both physical and mental health, and overall quality of life. Male Incontinence can even lead to making a person fearful of leaving their house all together, forfeiting social invitations, and maybe even causing them to miss work.
Not providing waste disposal units for incontinence sufferers to use can leave them with no choice but to either flush used items down the toilet, which can cause blockages and other environmental issues, or leave them forced to take used items home to dispose of them.
While adult incontinence products are the fastest-growing retail disposable hygiene category, a lack of awareness of the issue is causing significant challenges. Measures are beginning to be put in place in order to tackle the issue across the globe. For example in Germany, regulations have been introduced to ensure that at least one hygiene bin is available per male washroom, but it is clear that more needs to be done.