Being diagnosed with a bladder disease, condition, or disorder is tough. In addition to experiencing often painful and embarrassing symptoms on a daily basis, sufferers have to deal with the social stigma attached to having a bladder problem and often lack the support of friends and family.
Fortunately, people who have bladder conditions don’t need to worry about living their lives uninsured. Whether it’s life insurance, TPD insurance, trauma insurance or income protection insurance that is needed, the Special Risk Managers team can help.
Our specialists have an in-depth knowledge of the insurance industry and can match clients experiencing bladder problems with the insurers that are most likely to be sympathetic to their conditions and offer the best coverage options.
Bladder Conditions in Australia
Millions of Australians of all ages experience bladder problems every day. From children and young adults who are prone to bed wetting, to mothers experiencing prolapses. Even seniors who have developed incontinence problems, bladder conditions are much more common than most people realise. The numbers, in fact, are startling:
– Around 4 million Australians have bladder control problems
– Roughly 10% of people over the age of 75 live with incontinence
– More than 50% of people over 80 years old experience nocturia
– 2% of young adults suffer from bedwetting
With bladder conditions affecting such a large proportion of the population, it doesn’t make sense for insurers to turn potential clients away simply because they have bladder health issues.
Common Bladder Disorders, Diseases & Conditions
While most of the common bladder conditions in Australia aren’t usually life-threatening, they can still have a huge negative impact on the day-to-day lives of sufferers. Common bladder problems faced by everyday Australians include:
Cystitis: This condition occurs when a urinary tract infection (UTI) reaches the bladder’s lining, causing it to become inflamed and uncomfortable. Symptoms include burning sensations while urinating, abnormal urine (cloudy, pungent or bloody), the frequent urge to urinate and pain around the bladder area. Women are more susceptible to bladder cystitis than men, especially if they’re sexually active, have had a hysterectomy, are pregnant or are going through menopause. While cystitis is easily cured in its early stages, if the condition is left untreated for a long time it can result in life-threatening kidney damage.
Urinary incontinence: Approximately 17% of Australians have bladder control problems at some point in their lives, and older people are more likely to suffer from incontinence. The causes of urinary incontinence are many and varied, including dementia, cancers, bladder stones, prostate conditions, childbirth and nocturia. Poor bladder control is also a common side effect of some prescription and over the counter medications. Urinary incontinence is treated in different ways depending on the underlying cause.
Overactive bladder: This condition is hallmarked by a sudden, uncontrollable urge to urinate as well as very frequent urination. Overactive bladders are caused by the bladder muscle contracting at inappropriate times instead of staying at rest until the bladder is full. Treatment may include lifestyle changes, medication and physical therapies.
Interstitial cystitis: Also known as “painful bladder syndrome”, interstitial cystitis occurs when the bladder’s signaling system isn’t working properly, and the sufferer feels painful urges to urinate more often than they should. This condition can cause interrupted sleep, intimacy issues, and reduced bladder capacity. Treatment is different for every individual but usually includes keeping a urination schedule and physical therapy.
Pelvic prolapse: This is one of the most common, yet least talked about bladder conditions. Roughly half of women who have given birth will experience a pelvic prolapse. It occurs when the tissue that joins your pelvic organs to the side of the pelvis is weakened or torn, and those organs (including the bladder) slip into the birth canal. This condition can be treated with physical therapy or surgery.
Bladder cancer: Roughly 2550 cases of bladder cancer are diagnosed in Australia every year. The most common symptom is blood in the urine. Bladder cancer is treated in much the same way as other forms of cancer (surgery, immunotherapy, chemotherapy) and it has a 53% five-year survival rate. Insurance options for people with bladder cancer will depend on the type of cancer diagnosed (urothelial carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma or adenocarcinoma), the stage the disease is at, remission status, and other factors.
Risk Factors for Bladder Conditions
Because there are so many bladder conditions, diseases and disorders, it is not easy to identify one set of specific risk factors that could increase your likelihood of being diagnosed with a bladder problem. Some of the things that your insurer will always take into account when building your personal risk profile (the document that determines how much your premiums will cost) will include your:
– Smoking status
– Height and weight
– Exercise regime
– Drug and alcohol consumption
– Family and personal medical history
– Current treatment plan (surgery, medication, therapy, checkups etc.)
– Number of children (women only)
It’s important to be honest and upfront when you’re asked questions about risks factors, because failing to disclose important information on your application could result in a claim denial later down the track.
Got a Bladder Disease, Disorder or Condition? Get Insured!
Regardless of whether your bladder condition is mild or severe, just experiencing a health scare in the first place can bring getting insurance to the very top of the priority list.
If you want to live with the peace of mind that comes with knowing your loved ones will be financially protected if your health takes a turn for the worse, reach out to Special Risk Managers today.
Our friendly and understanding team are waiting to take your call, or answer your online enquiry. Just dial 1300 665 356 for a confidential discussion about your insurance needs, email firstname.lastname@example.org or fill out our convenient online contact form and we’ll get back to you straight away.