Aside from the obvious day to day disruption, discomfort & embarrassment that bladder weakness causes, there are a whole host of other implications that can affect the confidence & well-being of the 1 in 3 women, and 1 in 10 men who experience this condition, every single day. But despite how common bladder weakness is, the majority of sufferers will leave this condition completely untreated, opting for ‘management’ methods such as pads, rather than seeking out solutions.
INNOVO partnered with Sex & Relationships Expert Annabelle Knight to discover the various challenges & embarrassment that UK women are facing with their sex lives as a result of bladder weakness to highlight some alarming facts and share how we can do something about it.
A survey we conducted found that women over 40 experiencing bladder weakness are looking for ways to avoid intimacy in the bedroom with:
- 30% making up ‘sex-cases’ to avoid sex altogether
- 23% saying that Bladder Weakness has led them to have less sex1
- 27% admitting they never have sex at all1
- 1 in 10 saying that Bladder Weakness has ruined their sex life completely1
Bladder weakness can impact on women’s sex lives in a whole host of ways, but generally, women will experience a loss of sensation as well as embarrassing & unpredictable leaks during sex, which can have a big impact on their confidence and sexual appetite.
The research we conducted also highlighted the serious struggles that menopausal women in particular face, in the bedroom with 30% saying that menopause had impacted their sex life due to accompanying incontinence, and 50% saying that it’s impacted their confidence when it comes to being intimate with a partner1.
"As well as dealing with hot flushes, night sweats and vaginal dryness, menopausal women may also have to deal with the decrease or loss of their sex drive due to depleted oestrogen and testosterone levels within their bodies. This can leave many couples struggling to readjust to their new sexual dynamic."
While sex is an important part of a healthy relationship, it also has many positive physicals, intellectual, emotional and social benefits including helping you to lead a healthy life, strengthening the immune system, alleviating stress, burning calories and lowering blood pressure – among other benefits! So, whether you are in a long-term relationship or one that’s just starting out, sex is an important factor to consider for your overall health, so don’t let bladder weakness get in your way.
Here are a few ways to refuel that spark
Bring back date nights
Ok, we’ve been there. You’ve had a long day; the kids are cooperating and the last thing on your mind is an energetic roll in the hay. But a big part of improving any relationship, and indeed your sex life, is being able to connect with each other mentally as well as physically just like at the beginning of a new relationship. Get to know each other all over again – there’s always something new to find out about your partner. And you may find out a thing or two about yourself while you’re at it…
Love your body
For a lot of us, one of the things that can get in the way of us wanting to get intimate with our partners is those little body insecurities. How you feel about yourself not only reflects in your mood & attitude but could also have an effect on your relationship. Try and shift your mind away from the things you love the least about yourself and focus on the things you love most! Remind yourself of all your amazing qualities can help you get in a more positive headspace. Make time with your partner to do things together that make you both feel good. Why not make your partner your new workout buddy? You can work up a sweat on your journey to health and wellness, whilst getting to spend more time together. So, what are you waiting for? Get that blood pumping.
Be adventurous! Step out of your comfort zone.
Intimacy is often one of the first things to fall off the priority list when you have a busy life and family. Why not surprise your partner with something new and spontaneous to switch things up a little bit?
“It's great to feel relaxed and comfortable in bed, but you don't want to get too comfortable. In a relationship, especially if you've been in one for a while, it's easy to get so used to each other and so relaxed that you end up living in your comfort zone. That can be great for a while, but you don't want your relationship to stagnate…Stepping out of your comfort zone together as a couple can really be like a breath of fresh air and breathe new life into your relationship” - Bustle
Stop the ‘sex-cuses’
We conducted a study to determine the impact of Urinary Incontinence on intimate relationships, and 1 in 5 women in the study said they make ‘sex-cuses’ to avoid intimacy with their partners. Urinary Incontinence can reduce your appetite for sex because of the anxiety and stress associated with the fear of leaking during sex. A weak pelvic floor, the root cause of Urinary Incontinence, mean that these muscles become a little bit lose, reducing your sensitivity during sex and making sex uncomfortable or even painful.
With INNOVO, you can stop making ‘sex-cuses’ and re-spark that flame that your leaks have been putting out for so long.
INNOVO is a clinically proven, truly non-invasive and long-lasting solution to urinary incontinence. Easy to use and comfortable to wear, INNOVO helps you safely and effortlessly strengthen and re-educate the entire network of pelvic floor muscles through gentle muscle stimulation.
Using INNOVO for just 30 minutes a day/five days a week over 12 weeks has been proven to treat bladder weakness – delivering results in as little as four weeks1.
INNOVO treats Stress, Urge & Mixed Incontinence in both women and men of all ages, and is the only non-invasive pelvic floor exerciser that targets the root cause of the problem. Use INNOVO's Stress Incontinence programme which will focus on delivering muscle strengthening stimulations to the entire network of pelvic floor muscles.
A clinical study found that:
- 80% of users saw a significant reduction in leaks after just 4 weeks2
- 87% of users were defined as either dry or almost dry after 12 weeks3
- 90% of users would recommend the therapy to others4
- 3Gem, 2,000 respondents, British Women [August 2017]
- Soeder S, et al, A randomised, controlled, double-blind, clinical study to compare two neuromuscular stimulator devices in female stress urinary incontinence: Effects on symptoms and quality of life. IUGA Conference 2018
- R. Dmochowski – Novel external electrical muscle stimulation device for the treatment of female stress urinary incontinence: randomized controlled noninferiority trial versus intravaginal electrical stimulation. ICS Conference 2018
- Observational study on the treatment of stress urinary incontinence with Innovotherapy, April 2014