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Continence Awareness Week - Media Release

Don’t hold on any longer – starting the continence conversation

Despite the fact one in four New Zealanders are impacted by incontinence, it’s something we’re simply not talking about.

Continence NZ wants to turn that around and for its 2018 Continence Awareness Week, which starts on 18 June, it’s encouraging Kiwis to start having important conversations about their bladder and bowel health.

Jenny-May Clarkson and her buddy Kaz have helped kick things off, sitting down with Continence NZ’s Educator Janet Thackray for a relaxed chat, to share their experiences and find out what’s normal, and when you should be asking for help.

Watch the video of Janet’s chat with Jenny-May and Kaz here

In Kaz’s case, if you tell her a joke and she can’t stop laughing, “it can be curtains”.

Jenny-May never had any issues prior to having her twin boys, but now when she has to go, she has to go.

Both women were surprised to hear that any amount of leakage, no matter how small, is not normal.

Our Continence Educator Janet Thackray says it’s common for women, especially those who have had babies, who think it’s just a part of life they have to suffer through.

“But leakage from the bladder or bowel is not normal, it is a symptom that something is wrong,” she says. “Wearing a pad is not going to fix your problem.”

Thackray says people don’t have to suffer in silence, as they can get help. “See your GP in the first instance and get a referral to the Continence Nursing Services, which are available country-wide.”

During Continence Awareness Week, Continence NZ is offering a continence checklist, and healthy bladder and bowel charts, so people can see whether they need to be concerned.

We are also launching an ‘Ask Janet Anything’ section on our website and or new Facebook page, giving people the chance to get answers on any issue they are concerned about from our expert Continence Educator.

Jenny-May Clarkson has taken up our challenge of working with a pelvic floor physio, and we will share her video diary in the coming months.

“We are delighted to have Jenny-May and Kaz starting the conversation on continence, and hope that they inspire people around New Zealand to start their own conversations,” says Continence NZ CEO Louise Judd.

“Historically continence issues have often been hidden, and people have suffered in silence. It's time for that to change. We are here to provide support – and want to encourage Kiwis to use our online resources to see if they may need help. People can call/email/Facebook message us, or speak to their GP. Many issues can be easily resolved, with the right support,” she adds.

“We don't want people to hold on any longer if continence is a struggle. Help is at hand, and we know that it can be life changing if people start the conversation and reach out for support.”

Continence Educator Janet Thackray is available for interviews on 021 343 266

You can find her bio here

Media inquiries:
021 295 4031

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