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Tackling Ageing Continence through Theory, Tools & Technology (TACT3)

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Stuart Parker


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After dementia, nothing is more feared by older people than the loss of continence. It is often the reason many people enter care facilities and can contribute to the breakdown of caring relationships. This paper reports on a three-year research project funded by the UK New Dynamics of Aging programme, which has explored three key issues in the predicament of maintaining continence from the “user’s” perspective. Firstly, understanding how continence services operated by the UK National Health Service can be improved to offer cost effective benefits that encourage people to report this sometimes embarrassing condition with confidence. Secondly, working directly with the US Simon Foundation, the project has developed user-requested, assistive devices that target the most embarrassing aspects of the condition, namely issues of personal odor control and urine leakage from continence pads. Lastly, understanding the challenges of managing continence in daily living outside of the home, with particular reference to accessing publicly accessible toilet facilities. The paper will highlight the research that has provided the basis for innovative design solutions.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Bichard J-A, van den Heuvel E, Jowitt F, Gilhooly M, Parker SG, Long A, Ratcliffe NM, McKee KJ, Gaydecki P

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: International Journal of Aging and Society

Year: 2012

Volume: 1

Issue: 2

Pages: 83-96

ISSN (print): 2160-1909

ISSN (electronic): 2160-1917

Publisher: Common Ground Publishing