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Strategies to Prevent Incontinence

Posted by Mens Liberty on May 3, 2016 11:11:07 AM

Patient_2.jpgOur active readers and viewers are quite familiar with our regular science updates, keeping you well-informed.  That’s something that we’re proud and honored to do.

The subject of Physical Therapy assisting some men to overcome incontinence AFTER they’ve had prostate surgery is quite familiar.  But what’s not so familiar is this:

The subject of Physical Therapy PRIOR TO prostate surgery.  And what we keep hearing is some really great news - that researchers are reporting “positive influence” with preoperative physical therapy procedures!

Let’s back up for just a moment…  Prostate surgery is much like many surgical procedures – there are possible side effects and complications.  Due to the prostate’s location and anatomical components, the 2 worst side effects are incontinence and erectile dysfunction.  While it’s common for men to experience some leaking for a few weeks post-surgery while tissues heal, some men can experience incontinence-related symptoms for many months – or for a lifetime post-surgery.

Our pelvic floor muscles are a group of muscles located at the base of the pelvis, and those muscles help control sexual, urinary and bowel function.  If the pelvic floor muscles are weak, they can’t squeeze tightly, or contract fast enough around the urethra (such as a sudden sneeze), resulting in leaking.

Some men may experience leaking only with coughing, laughing or lifting weight.  Others may experience constant dribbling throughout the day and/or night, with increased leakage during physical activity.

Most prostate surgery patients are undergoing a different protocol at The Elliott Hospital in Manchester, New Hampshire.  That’s where patients are undergoing preoperative evaluations and instructions by physical therapists.  Clinical Specialist / Physical Therapist Lynne Assad states “The urologists at our facility are aware that we provide this service…  It’s part of the protocol that is followed in the urology center.”

It begins with a preoperative assessment where they analyze and measure each patient’s pelvic floor muscle strength.  Then they begin a program of Kegel strengthening exercises to improve muscle function prior to surgery.

Assad goes on – “I think that Physical Therapists and nurses dealing with incontinence after surgery also have an opportunity to positively influence the patients preoperatively.  In terms of the psychological aspect, particularly, I have found that the value of the surgical evaluation and treatment is significantly helpful.  It reduces the unknown and ultimately minimizes the depression and fear that comes from a patient suddenly having total loss of urinary control without understanding why.”

This makes complete sense!  And on 2 levels – physically and emotionally.  We know from study after study that many men have great success overcoming incontinence by regaining strength in their pelvic floor muscles.  I said many – not all.

Here’s the critical point on the physical level:  Why not get started on those pelvic floor muscles BEFORE surgery?!  Something to seriously consider…

And this makes sense on the emotional level as well.  Think about it…  Did anyone talk to you about incontinence prior to your prostate surgery?  Most men tell us that no one said a thing.  They had NO IDEA that their surgery could cause incontinence!

By having preoperative meetings with a team of Physical Therapists and nurses, the communication begins BEFORE surgery, opening the door for patients to do further research and discovery, and doing a much better job of preparing.

As we’ve said, over and over again – it’s not just the PHYSICAL aspects of incontinence.  It’s the societal and emotional issues as well…  The urological team at The Elliott Hospital is doing it right, and we applaud their attitudes, efforts and protocol!

Topics: prostate cancer, physical therapy, Health Literacy

Reality Check: Cancer Isn’t Just Something that Happens to Other People

Posted by Mens Liberty on Apr 28, 2016 12:58:52 PM

Cancer isn’t just something that happens to somebody else.  1 in 6 men right here in the United States will be diagnosed with prostate cancer during their lifetime. More than 10 percent of new prostate cancer diagnoses occurs in men younger than 55 years old. Wendy LaTorre takes a moment to discuss this increase with you.

Topics: Video Blogs, prostate cancer, Health Literacy

Getting Back in the Game

Posted by Mens Liberty on Apr 26, 2016 11:00:00 AM

I think that for almost every one of us reading this message, we have at least one thing in common:  We’ve experienced some setbacks in life.  It could be financial, losing a beloved family member, friend or co-worker, divorce, a lay-off, our health, and many other things – including incontinence.

 It’s easy to have a good attitude and continuously think positive as long as things are going our way, right?!

What about the difficult times?  One of the hardest things to do when we’re experiencing adversity is to keep our heads held high, and “get back in the game.”  To be positive or to not be depressed…  It’s really easy to lose our passion when we’re hurt.

 Our friend Jason Parker, an Olympic medal winner (speed skating) has a great story about his very first race.  He was around 11 years old, and it was a 4-lap race.  So as he was skating into the very first turn, guess what he did…  Sure enough, he “hit the boards”.  That’s skaters-talk meaning he fell down.

Jay__Chimo001_REZ.jpg

He picked himself up and began skating again, and by the end of the race, Jason had fallen 4 times.  But you know what he had to do to finish the race?  He had to PICK HIMSELF UP and begin skating again.

Here’s a guy who went from falling 4 times in his first race and because he had a “Pick-Myself-Up Attitude”, he became an Olympic champion!

 Now here’s the rest of Jason’s story…  Sitting in the audience of his very first race were his family, his friends, and a cute young girl (Kristin) he had his eye on.  And with all his falls, he was embarrassed beyond belief!  And after the race, he knew that cute little Kristin would never give him the time of day, and perhaps not even look at him.

Honeymoon-Jason-Kristen.jpgFast forward 15 years, and cute little Kristen is now Mrs. Parker, and Kristen and Jason have 2 beautiful children!

Of course, many people choose to sit on the sidelines of life and not move forward because they’ve been “injured.”  As we all know, that’s their prerogative.

But at Men’s Liberty, we feel like it’s our responsibility to ask questions that just may perhaps motivate you to change your life and to change your lifestyle!

So here’s the question:    “What if…?”

What if we picked ourselves up from the “boards” and “started skating again?”

We’re reminded of Cameron J., survivor of prostate cancer.  Like many, his treatments left him incontinent.  He was devastated because (in his words) he ‘was TRAPPED at home, afraid to go anywhere because he feared that his adult diapers might leak, or that someone could smell his urine.’

Lucky for Cameron, his daughter was an expert researcher, and that’s how he discovered Men’s Liberty!  And because of Men’s Liberty, Cameron picked himself up off the boards and became active again.

In fact Cameron is so active and busy, dedicating and volunteering his time and energies to the local hospital, church, and community enhancement committee!  Cameron’s wife teases saying ‘she sees him less now than when he was working.’

And that’s what it’s all about – raising our heads up high, finding solutions and getting ourselves back into the game!

I think that if we just stop and think about the many times we’ve witnessed people picking themselves up, we’ll start saying to ourselves something like this –

  •  “If John can do it, why can’t I?”
  • “I saw that football player finish the game with a broken arm AND broken ribs! Why can’t I?”

And think about it…  When they interview champions about their injuries, almost always they say the same thing:  “I’d rather be IN THE GAME than sitting on the sidelines watching it go by.”

 And there’s the difference between champions and everyone else.

Now this is important:

 At Men’s Liberty, we believe that

ALL PEOPLE HAVE A CHAMPION INSIDE THEMSELVES!!

So what can we do to help you find your inner-Champion?  What can we do to help you pick yourself up from the “boards”?

And – do you have a “Champion Story”?  We want to hear it!!  We want your inspiration and we want to celebrate your big wins.  So please – share your story with us now!!

NOTE:     If you’re new or just discovering Men’s Liberty, please know that we have a very experienced team of experts – including nurses and medical specialists, readily available to help answer all your questions to regaining your life and your inner champion.

Don’t hesitate to call our client assistance team today – 800-814-3174.  We’ll make every step of this journey as easy as possible!  800-814-3174

Topics: family, Health Literacy, Patient Stories, compassion

Get A Job

Posted by Caleb Bartlett on Apr 21, 2016 11:08:00 AM

Unsplash-Alejandro-Escamilla.jpg

Today’s job market is highly competitive. No longer having a college degree guarantees success in the workplace. With more and more jobs going overseas or becoming specialized finding employment can be difficult for able-bodied people, never mind the thousands of folks with physical limitations. Furthering your education can be time-consuming and cost-prohibitive as well. How do those of us already battling labels and physical impediments rise above and meet our needs?

In my experience of living in a chair for 22 years the greatest hindrance I have found to financial success is self-consciousness and self-doubt. Many people who are different let the media or the status quo or even doctors determine what they are worth or capable of, but the real truth is that the only person who can decide that for you is you. These kinds of deep, personal changes don’t come overnight and require a great deal of effort, but while you are working on success from the inside I have  a handful of practical steps you can take towards personal financial stability.

  1. Know your strengths. Are you a good communicator? Are you comfortable on the phone? Maybe you are good with numbers, or you’re more of a “big idea” person? Do you love animals or children? What are you passionate about? Knowing your strong points will build confidence and give you grounding when going through interviews and promoting yourself. Don’t be afraid to make a list!
  2. Think outside the box. Everybody needs something and you just might be their answer. There is great liberty in being your own boss. With tools like the internet and social media running your own business in a professional and powerful way has never been more easy than it is today. Find your niche and exploit it!
  3. Know your stuff. We have access to more information than any other generation in history. Books online, college courses, even YouTube! Don’t stop reading and studying. It is said that 1 hour of reading a day will make one an expert in their given field in 7 years. Companies spend millions of dollars each year on consultants to improve their chances of success. Imagine getting paid just to talk! Knowledge is a precious commodity, stock up on it.
  4. The Government is not your source. Use those special programs and disability benefits as a means to an end. Use the money wisely and work on a strategy over 5-10 years to reduce your dependence on Federal help. You’re not a ward of the state, you’re a valuable, contributing member of society. Start cultivating that view today.
  5. Clean out your financial closet. Get your money and banking organized. No matter how broke you may be! Keep accurate records and set a budget. If you have bad debt or credit card debt consider consolidation or a doable repayment strategy. Reduce unnecessary expenditures like unhealthy snack foods, cigarettes, alcohol, video games, and other non-productive pastimes. Set aside 5% of your monthly income for savings.
  6. Volunteer. This is your chance to get out make connections. Strut your stuff. Find something you’re passionate about and donate your time. You never know the connections you will make and the opportunities that will open up to you. If they see what you do for free, they will know what you can do with money.
  7. Don’t be afraid of “No”. Pick yourself up and move on. If they don’t see your value you don’t want to work there anyway. Plain and simple. 

Go forth and prosper and don’t be afraid. You can determine your future, and let nothing stand in your way.

That’s the main advantage of Men’s Liberty:  No worry!

Topics: tips from Men's Liberty users, Guest Blogs, incontinence

Overactive Bladder and Your Quality of Life (VIDEO)

Posted by Mens Liberty on Apr 18, 2016 10:47:00 AM

In Men's Liberty's never-ending search to find information to help you, we recently discovered a great study that was completed in Spain.  The study focused on urge urinary incontinence and an overactive bladder.  The researchers and scientists did a survey among a group of patients to identify the impact of their incontinence on their quality of life. Wendy LaTorre takes a moment to share this study with you.

Topics: Video Blogs, Health Literacy, incontinence

From Scotch to Craft Beer and Incontinence

Posted by Sam Turner on Apr 13, 2016 10:03:08 AM

Craft-Beer-Incontinence.jpgWelcome back friends!

I’m not a drinker -  However, back when I was thirty, I found some magazine that listed the twenty best scotches. (If it had been the twenty best bourbons, I would have tried them.)   I went to my doctor friend and said, “I’d like to become a social drinker, but I don’t want to get drunk or have hangovers. What should I do?”

“Sam, don’t take mixed drinks.  Drink it straight with water back.  Also have a bowl of oatmeal or buttermilk, before you go.  Then order one scotch and nurse it all night.”

I took my list and a 3x5 card and wrote down the brands that I liked.  I settled on Johnny Walker Black. I would have taken Glenlivet but it was too hard to find.  I didn’t go for the oatmeal prep, but I did start out with buttermilk. pouring_milk_c.jpgI drank scotch for about five years. I didn’t get drunk or pass out.  (There was one time when we had friends over and I broke my rule: I decided to drink Margaritas from a beer stein.  My doctor was correct: By the second stein, I passed out.)  Other than that one time I didn’t have hangovers.  Then one day, I stopped.  Just stopped running in that kind of social circle.  The scotch bottles stayed in the cupboard for three or four years.  Never touched it and sold the whole box of five or six bottles at a yard sale for five dollars. I gave up scotch, but I acquired a liking for buttermilk!    

Fast forward fifty years.  In my eighth decade, I have decided to step outside the box again. A Tucson newspaper mentioned several craft breweries within our area.  Did you know there is something called a “flight”?  This is a way to taste different beers.  (I wonder if one can move up to a “Squadron”?)  Anyway, after I have decided the type of craft beer I like, I am expected to drink at the least, one glass. And no, I haven’t made up my mind. There, my friends, is the problem:  Beer causes one to pee. Unless you want to become a multi-absorbent-wearing di-dee doll, beer will go right through you. The solution is the Men’s Liberty External Catheter. In the winter, with long pants, a Men’s Liberty leg bag is perfect. But in the summer with temperatures in the 100ºs, shorts are called for.   The “regular” size will be fine. It means more trips to the rest room, but the exercise is good.

For those who may wonder: She-Who-Must-Be-Obeyed will be the driver!

To be continued…

That’s the main advantage of Men’s Liberty:  No worry!

Topics: tips from Men's Liberty users, Guest Blogs, incontinence

How Sound Can Make You Pee

Posted by Mens Liberty on Apr 5, 2016 12:10:43 PM

This week at Men's Liberty we're discussing "psychoacoustics," the study of the psychological and physiological responses associated with sound. Wendy Latorre shares some information that our blogger Sam Turner turned us on to and we find amusing.

Topics: Video Blogs, Interesting Articles, incontinence

Your Genes Are Not Your Fate

Posted by Mens Liberty on Mar 29, 2016 11:20:00 AM

In March of 2008, Dr. Dean Ornish, a renowned physician gave a TED Talk in Monterey, California entitled “Your Genes Are Not Your Fate.”  The talk was powerful and impactful, and during his talk, Dr. Ornish shared some incredible research!

We thought you’d enjoy a summary of his talk, beginning with a couple of fascinating facts about changing our genes.  Yes – we can change our genes – first by creating new ones, and second, by changing our lifestyles!

 

The best news is that when you make lifestyle changes, you don’t have to wait a long time to see the results!  Dr. Ornish says that “when you eat healthier, manage stress, exercise, and love more, your brain actually gets more blood flow and more oxygen.”

He goes on to say that after making these changes, our brains become measurably bigger.  “Walking for 3 hours per week for only 3 months caused so many new neurons to grow that it actually increased the size of people’s brains.”

Dr. Ornish says there’s some things that we can eat, drink and manage to increase our brain cells – things like:

  • Chocolate
  • Tea
  • Blueberries
  • Alcohol (in moderation)
  • Stress management

And of course, he lists some foods and substances that decrease our brain cells, such as:

  • Saturated fat
  • Sugar
  • Nicotine
  • Opiates
  • Cocaine
  • Alcohol (excessive)
  • Chronic stress

Here’s a really interesting fact.  Dr. Ornish says that “your skin gets more blood flow when you change your lifestyle, so you age less quickly and your skin doesn’t wrinkle as much, and your heart gets more blood flow.”

He says that we can actually reverse heart disease, and that after only a year, “clogged arteries become measurably less clogged!” 

He continues “We’ve shown that you may be able to stop or reverse the progression of early prostate cancer and by extension, breast cancer - simply by making these lifestyle changes.  Tumor growth was inhibited 70% in the study group who had made these lifestyle changes.”

Now isn’t just this news alone enough for all of us to immediately consider making some immediate lifestyle changes?!  This change in lifestyle has the power to substantially increases our quality of life, and who doesn’t want a better quality of life?!

Now here’s some news that may interest all of our followers…  “Even your sexual organs get more blood flow, so you increase sexual potency.”

And here’s some news that isn’t so great, and definitely a reason to quit smoking if you are a smoker…  “Nicotine, which constricts your arteries can cause a heart attack or a stroke, but it also causes impotency.  HALF of guys who smoke are impotent!”

Dr. Ornish then addresses a subject that is close to our awareness – prostate cancer.  During his talk, he shows a “heat map” and then talks about a study they’re getting ready to publish that says “we found that over 500 genes were favorably changed, and in effect turning on the good genes – the disease-preventing genes, and turning off the disease promoting genes.

So much of what Dr. Ornish is reporting is really terrific news!  And as Dr. Ornish pronounces, “these findings are very powerful, and they’re giving many people new hope and choices!”

This is a very strong argument for all of us to make lifestyle changes that are now PROVEN to substantially improve our lives.  Don’t we owe this to our loved ones?  Of course we do!

So here’s our question:  After hearing Dr. Ornish’s report, what are you going to do IMMEDIATELY to implement a healthier lifestyle?

We want to hear your answers!  Please participate and let us know!

Topics: medical research, Health Literacy, compassion

March is National Kidney Month - How Well Do You Know Your Kidneys? (VIDEO)

Posted by Mens Liberty on Mar 24, 2016 10:15:39 AM

This week Wendy LaTorre of Men's Liberty is focusing on a completely different body part – our kidneys.  And that’s in honor of National Kidney Month.  Discover some amazing facts about kidneys and how important they are and what is happening this month.

Topics: Video Blogs, prostate cancer, incontinence

Your Prostate Cancer Reading List – Before, During and After Treatment (VIDEO)

Posted by Mens Liberty on Mar 16, 2016 1:03:00 PM

This week Wendy LaTorre of Men's Liberty shares some great resources from UsToo.org, an incredible online prostate cancer support, education and advocacy group. There are two wonderful eBooks you should check out if you or someone you care for is affected by prostate cancer.

Topics: Video Blogs, prostate cancer, incontinence

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