older woman in hallway

Incontinence – that is loss of bladder or bowel control – can affect men and women but bladder problems tend to be more common in women. Not only can it cause skin irritation and hygiene problems, it can significantly affect your day-to-day life and confidence when away from home.



Although it can be a difficult problem to talk about, there is a better chance of it being cured or managed successfully, when it is diagnosed early. More than 2.5 million people over 60 in the UK have urinary incontinence, and 6.5 million people of all ages have bowel problems.

Our Bladder and bowel problems guide looks at different types of incontinence and what you can do to help yourself. In many cases, it can be improved or even cured. There are many ways of managing the problem so it doesn't interfere with your daily life. Download the guide now to find out more.

Our factsheet Help with continence briefly describes commonly experienced bladder problems and conditions that may lead to problems with bowel control. In addition to NHS support and treatment it identified other organisations that offer support and practical solutions.

There is information on:

  • GP support and how to access your local NHS continence advisory service
  • advice and treatment available from the NHS whether you live at home or in a care home
  • local eligibility criteria for continence products
  • VAT exemption if you buy certain continence products
  • service offered by Disabled Living Centres 
  • useful organisations offering support and practical solutions

opens link in new window Download our information guide: Bladder and bowel problems (PDF 1MB)

opens link in new window Download our factsheet: Help with continence (PDF 157 KB)

We are grateful for the generous support of Dr Naim Dangoor CBE
and the Exilarch Foundation

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Useful information to download

  • An information guide with advice on all commonly-experienced problems and how to deal with them
  • A factsheet on help with continence
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