Thursday, October 25, 2012

All About Adult Incontinence Products

When someone first begins experiencing incontinence they often feel alone, embarrassed, and even ashamed at the lack of control they are experiencing. However, it is important to understand that you are not alone. Studies show that several million people of all ages, health status, and both genders are dealing with incontinence. The good news is that there is a wide range of adult incontinence products that can help anyone continue on with their daily activities while still managing their incontinence.
The key to successfully managing your incontinence is to educate yourself about all of the options that are available and then choose the right incontinence undergarment that work best for your needs. Once you have the right incontinence underwear and other incontinence management strategies in place then you can continue on with the daily activities that you want to be doing. It should be stressed that there are incontinence products for men and for women so that each gender can find the product that works best for their gender, size, type and severity of problem. Keeping all of these factors in mind will help the sufferer to be able to successfully manage his or her incontinence.
  • Incontinence undergarments - There is a wide variety of incontinence undergarments. Each of these incontinence undergarments is designed to provide a certain level of absorbency and protection for the wearer. The wearer will need to determine the correct incontinence undergarment for their needs depending on their gender, size, and type and severity of incontinence. The incontinence sufferer who is choosing a product will also need to take into account their lifestyle and activity level since certain kinds of products lend themselves more effective in managing incontinence for the wearer. Finally, adults who are looking for the right product should also take into consideration that their protection needs may vary from day to night and even from day to day so having a variety of undergarments on hand is recommended.

  • Incontinence pads - Many people (both women and men), have only light incontinence symptoms. If you fall into this category you may find that using an incontinence pad is enough protection. There are pads for both men and women that provide protection where each gender needs it the most. These pads can be used inside normal underwear to help manage light incontinence or they can be worn in conjunction with an incontinence undergarment in order to boost the protection and efficacy. Many types of incontinence underwear come with a special pouch that allows the wearer to change his or her incontinence pad without having to take off their underwear.

  • Incontinence bed pads - Another effective product is the incontinence bed pad. These are pads that are used to protect bedding and furniture from the damage that can be done by incontinence accidents. Incontinence bed pads come in both reusable and disposable forms and are used to cover any surface that may need protecting from incontinence accidents.
Other incontinence products - There is a variety of other adult incontinence products that include but are not limited to: skin products for protecting and cleaning the skin, urine collection devices, and even physical therapy tools for helping in the treatment of incontinence. All of these products can be found on sites that offer incontinence supplies.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

ADHD and a Military Career

Can my son or daughter with ADHD serve in the US military? Many ADHD support groups receive this question from concerned parents or teens who want to know if their ADHD symptoms or treatments disqualify them from a military career. Often, they find that there is no easy answer to this question, especially when different military recruiters tend to provide them with incomplete or inaccurate answers.
A simplistic answer to this question would be maybe, and changes look good if your symptoms are under control and you do not take medications for ADHD. Enlisting to serve in the US military is a multi-step process with different criteria for eligibility, and it's possible for someone with ADHD to meet them despite their symptoms. Generally, the criteria fall into two categories: aptitude and skills required for military service, and physical standards, both of which are evaluated at all Military Entrance and Processing Stations.
In order to make it to the next round, every candidate has to take and pass the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery, a timed test that measures aptitude in word knowledge, mathematics knowledge, mathematics reasoning, general science, mechanical comprehension, auto information, and electronics information. There are no special accommodations allowed for this test.
Physical standards
Aside from testing for aptitude and skills, candidates also have to pass the Physical Standards for Appointment, Enlistment, or Inductions. This would involve taking a complete psychiatric/medical history as well as a comprehensive physical exam. Candidates with ADHD should take note of the Directive 6130.3 from the Department of Defense, which states the following criteria for rejection:
a) Personality, behavioral, or conduct disorders. If the psychological testing and interview reveals that ADHD symptoms and other conduct problems will interfere with the candidate's performance in the military, he or she will be disqualified.
b) Academic skills defects. If the candidate has a long history of academic problems or perceptual defects that interfere with schoolwork after 12 years, or if the candidate takes medication to maintain or improve academic skills, he or she will be disqualified.
The good news is that the Army, Navy, Marines, Air Force, and Coast Guard can grant waivers to certain individuals who do not pass the basic criteria listed above. The reasons for the waiver depend on the circumstances and vary from one case to another. However, it seems that academic aptitude without the use of ADHD medication increases your chances of getting a waiver. Generally speaking, the military disqualifies any candidate who needs to take daily medication to maintain their health or to keep chronic disorders at bay. For examples, candidates with asthma, chronic bronchitis, or coronary heart disease are just some of the many medical conditions that can disqualify an individual from a military career. So try not to feel "singled out" if your use of ADHD medications keeps you from joining the military.
Give it a shot
If you have your heart set on a military career despite your ADHD, try not to be swayed by the possibility of disqualification. The military still encourages individuals with ADHD to give it a shot together with other career options. Talk to a good recruiter and send in your application, and be completely honest about your medical history and educational background. Being disqualified from the military now is much better than getting honorably discharged for giving false information.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Tips for Getting Your Point Across When No One Is Listening

Disclaimer. You're probably reading this because you want to be heard, and I'm going to talk about how to listen. Because that's how to be heard. Become a good listener.
The three primary ingredients of conversation are: Inquiry, Acknowledgment, and Advocacy.
  • Inquiry is about learning, curiosity, and doing your best to understand how something looks to someone else.
  • Acknowledgement is letting that someone know you've heard them.
  • Advocacy is inviting them to hear you.
If advocating is all you do, you will have few listeners. They'll get tired or bored. If, on the other hand, you are a skilled listener, people will flock to you. And they will listen back.
5 Skills for Becoming a Good Listener
These are mine. I'd love to hear yours.
#1) Presence
Be there. Be tranquil. There is no need to be anywhere else. As Brenda Ueland writes in her magical 1992 article from the San Jose Mercury News: Say to yourself: "Now. What is happening now? This friend is talking. I am quiet. There is endless time. I hear it, every word."
Make eye contact. Listen for what is not being said. When thoughts stray (I wonder what's for dinner?), bring them back to the speaker.
#2) Posture
Stand or sit next to the speaker without tables or barriers between you. Aim for side by side. If a table is necessary, make it a round one. Or sit caddy-corner to the speaker.
#3) Be Curious
When I asked a coaching client what it would take to pose a question in a tone that sounded like he really wanted to explore rather than judge, he said: "I'd actually have to BE curious. "We had a good laugh realizing the obvious. And... Yes. That's it. You actually have to BE curious. It's a powerful state of mind.
#4) Ask Questions Like This
  • Can you tell me your thinking on this issue?
  • If you could have your way in this, what would that look like?
  • What else can you tell me about the problem?
  • What's the ideal solution as you see it?
  • Can you give me three or four ideas that would work for you?
  • How do you think we should proceed?
What's important is that:
  • You ask sincere questions that you don't know the answer to.
  • You help the speaker reflect on his/her thinking.
  • You proceed as if you're attempting to solve a puzzle.
#5) Acknowledge and Clarify Like This
  • What I hear you saying is (.....).
  • That sounds important. Can you say more about why you think that?
  • What specifically would you like me to do differently?
  • Can you describe what I do or say that makes me appear aggressive (passive, not interested, angry, etc.)?
  • Which part of the project are you concerned about?
  • From what you say about (.....), you are hoping for (.....).
  • Thank you for this information.
  • I appreciate your thinking on this.
  • Is there anything else?
Acknowledging is simply repeating back to the speaker what you just heard and asking clarifying questions. It's only hard because we subconsciously equate acknowledgment with agreement. They are different. Listening and acknowledging what you hear are not the same as agreeing with what you hear.
That's right: Listening and acknowledgement ≠ agreement.
Advocacy and The Art of Persuasion: 3 Tips for Being Heard
#1) State your view of the situation with something like:
  • I feel differently (if you do).
  • From my point of view, here's what I think would be useful....
  • I agree with (.....). I also think it's important to consider (.....), if we're going to have a lasting solution.
  • When you said (.....), it made me think of (.....). I think it would be useful to explore this area more thoroughly because....
#2) Both/And
Help clarify your position without minimizing your partner's. Include your partner's words wherever possible. Example: I hear you strongly advocating for extra sick-leave in your contract, and I would love to be able to accommodate. I can't at this point because of monetary limits. However, can we revisit this topic in 12 months. Would that work for you?
You can find more examples of Advocacy language in my "Step-By-Step Checklist" article for difficult conversations and in "Being Heard: 6 Strategies for Getting Your Point Across."
#3) Avoid Selling or Telling
The most useful strategy for being heard is to educate. Help your partner see what you're seeing. And since you have listened so well, your advocacy will be different. You'll address areas of agreement as well as places where you differ. You will go back to Inquiry occasionally as you test solutions (What do you think? Could my theory work?). And you'll be more solution-oriented.
Opening the Door
You can't make someone hear you. The funny thing is, when you push for your way, you virtually guarantee failure. When you open the door for someone else, however, they almost always hold it open for you.