Securing Dignity: Incontinence Solutions for Seniors

Securing Dignity: Incontinence Solutions for Seniors

As we age, it's not uncommon to experience certain health issues that can affect our daily lives. One such issue that many seniors face is incontinence, which can be both embarrassing and inconvenient.

Fortunately, there are a variety of incontinence products available that can help seniors manage this condition and maintain their independence. In this blog post, we will explore the best incontinence products for seniors, so they can live their lives with confidence and comfort.

1. Adult Diapers

Adult diapers, also known as incontinence briefs, are one of the most common and effective incontinence products for seniors. These diapers are designed to be worn discreetly under clothing and provide excellent absorbency. They come in various sizes and styles to suit individual needs and preferences.

2. Incontinence Pads

Incontinence pads, also called liners or shields, are another popular choice for seniors. These pads are designed to be worn inside regular underwear and offer a high level of absorbency. They are particularly useful for individuals with light to moderate incontinence.

3. Protective Underwear

Protective underwear, also known as pull-ups or adult pull-on briefs, are similar to regular underwear but with built-in absorbency. They are easy to put on and take off, making them a convenient option for seniors who want a product that closely resembles regular underwear.

4. Bed Pads

Bed pads, also called underpads or mattress protectors, are designed to protect the bed from leaks and accidents. These pads are placed on top of the mattress and provide a waterproof barrier. They are available in disposable and reusable options, depending on individual needs.

5. Skin Care Products

When dealing with incontinence, it's essential to take care of the skin to prevent irritation and infection. Seniors should use gentle cleansers, moisturizers, and barrier creams specifically designed for incontinence care. These products help maintain skin health and prevent discomfort.

6. Odour Control Products

Incontinence can sometimes be accompanied by unpleasant odors. To address this issue, there are odor control products available, such as sprays, deodorizers, and odor-neutralizing pads. These products help eliminate or minimize odors, keeping the environment fresh and clean.

7. Incontinence Bedding

Incontinence bedding, such as waterproof mattress protectors and pillow protectors, are essential for maintaining a clean and hygienic sleeping environment. These products are designed to be waterproof and protect the bedding from leaks and stains.

8. Incontinence Accessories

There are various accessories available that can enhance the effectiveness and convenience of incontinence products. These include disposable gloves for hygiene purposes, wet wipes for easy cleanup, and disposal bags for discreet and odor-free disposal of used products.

When choosing the best incontinence products for seniors, it's important to consider individual needs, preferences, and the level of incontinence. Consulting with a healthcare professional or an incontinence specialist can provide valuable guidance in selecting the most suitable products. With the right products, seniors can manage their incontinence with confidence and maintain their quality of life.

What are the best incontinence products for seniors?

It can be one of those awful moments in life – acknowledging that you or your partner may be having incontinence troubles. Maybe you catch a whiff on clothes. Maybe you notice stains on clothing or on the furniture.

At first, you hope it’s a one time thing. Then someone else mentions it, too. Suddenly you realize - this one’s on you. You are going to have to have the talk about incontinence, because no one else will. Now what?

The good news is that there are lots of great resources to help – explanations of men's incontinence vs women's incontinence, types of incontinence, and scripts for how to have ‘The conversation’ (even if it's with yourself). What they boil down to is this:

  • Incontinence is an involuntary physiological condition. Translation? The issue is out of your control (right now), so stop thinking someone's ‘letting’ this happen;
  • The person might not even be aware of the extent of the issue, or they have no idea what to do about it;
  • Finding a solution is easier than you think.

Once you wrap your head around the fact that bladders aren't leaking just to make your life difficult, then you can get on with the fix.

Here's a simple to-do list:

  1. Make an appointment with the doctor so any medical issues can be ruled out;
  2. Get up to speed on the products to consider using; and
  3. Get some products ordered and in the bathroom right away.

Get up to speed on product options

Think about how cold weather clothing  – base layers, light, warm fleece jackets, even gloves – have improved radically since you were a kid. Well, medical textiles for incontinence protection have also improved as dramatically.

Through aggressive science and solid research, products are upgrading all the time. There are options—and excellence—that just haven’t been available in the past.

Adult diapers aren't the only solution

Today’s product range is impressive, including disposable underwear and underwear liners, adult briefs (adult diapers)bed or chair pads, swimwear and even washcloths and skin care solutions.

Good news - we've done the research for you. We’ve already picked product brands with outstanding construction, unbeatable absorbency, first-rate odour control, overall capacity to contain leaks and the capability to be good to skin (don’t underestimate this one).

All you have to think through is the kind of product needed – and what your budget is.

*TIP: You don't need as many adult diapers, underwear or pads when you buy products with higher absorbency.

Higher absorbency = higher capacity = fewer changes needed per day or night

Start with daytime vs overnight - which is the bigger concern?

Think about your wardrobe – just like you’ve got clothes for at-home, social activities or bedtime – different bladder and bowel incontinence products exist for different uses too.

Incontinence products are developed for either daytime - lighter protection that catches leaks between bathroom breaks - or overnight (ideally, when asleep for 6-8 hours). Which situation are facing? Or do you need both?

If overnight, more protection, or more capacity, is needed so that the product absorbs more volume over a longer time period. More absorption means a better, uninterrupted sleep - better for health and safety (no falls).

Remember – more sleep means a better mood. And who doesn't prefer that?

Is mobility a factor in choosing incontinence products?

Can you change clothes easily, or do you need help getting out of bed and dressed? If you are independent, underwear liners and disposable underwear are the way to go.

If you need help getting around - such as using a walker - disposable briefs (adult diapers) have tabs on the side to change without needing to take pants off.

Finally, for 'around the house' (or car) protection, there are washable or  disposable bed or chair pads that can easily protect prized furniture and mattresses.

Believe it or not, the washable furniture pads come in a range of colours to better blend in with blankets, throws and furniture.

Why is hip and waist size important?

If you think underwear, adult briefs (adult diapers) or swimwear might be in order, you'll need to know hip and waist size. Wearing the right size prevents leaks.

*TIP: If you wear size "medium" does not mean that your new disposable underwear is the same size. It probably is not! 

Incontinence products aren't inexpensive - don't waste your money by guessing at the right size.

Fortunately, we have this handy graphic to show you exactly what you'll need to know, and how to measure to get the correct information:

How to measure waist / hip sizes

Any easy view of how much fluid we are talking about...

Glass of beer and a glass of wine

Start with the numbers – one beer equals 12 ounces (341 ml). Thus 2/3 of a beer is 8 ounces (237 ml). And one 'typical' adult pee? Yep. Also 8 oz.

Alternatively, a glass of wine is generally contains 5 fluid ounces (148 ml), or a little less than one adult pee. Or 'void' if you're feeling queasy...

And that cup of tea? 8 oz.! Even with milk.

You need to figure out if you are dealing with less than a glass of beer or cup of tea or glass of wine at a time – maybe over several hours - or, far more, and how quickly.

When choosing an incontinence product, you want to know:

  • How quickly does the product absorb?
  • How much does it hold - a few drips, some leaks?
  • How dry does it stay?

"Protection" is about capacity

What do we mean by ‘lighter’ vs ‘more’ protection? It’s about capacity. As incontinence product manufacturers don't use the same language to describe the capacity of their products, it can be difficult to figure out the difference between them.

To help you sort it out, we developed a Total Capacity Rating system we use to standardize capacity across all the brands and products we sell.

Watch for the Total Capacity Rating when browsing My Liberty's underwear and underwear liners or adult briefs (adult diapers)bed or chair padsswimwear and washcloths.

That way, you can make sure the products you choose are right for your needs right now (vs later, when more protection might be needed).

In the meantime, consider these product options, each in increasing order of capacity.

Light bladder leak protection options

Men's guards, women's panty liners or pads, or unisex liners are available as disposable products. They are quiet, discreet and comfortable. They protect against the drips or dribbles of slight to light wetness. Ultra-thin and absorbent, these are worn inside regular underwear.

They offer daytime protection from occasional bladder leaks and are shaped differently for women (hour glass) vs men (cup shaped).

Men's Underwear Shields or Guards

Men's underwear guards

Women's Underwear Panty Liners or Pads

Women's incontinence pads for light bladder leaks

Guards, shields, panty liners, pads and underwear liners stay in place with a strong adhesive grip. Slim and inconspicuous, guards or pads are suitable for light bladder loss.

Moderate bladder leak protection options

Disposable Incontinence Underwear

Disposable underwear are lightweight, discreet and good for light-to-moderate leakages.

They can look and feel similar to regular underwear, and the higher end brands use materials that don't 'rustle'. They are easy to pull on, take off and throw out, and will give you the comfort and confidence to get through a worry-free day.

Men's Disposable UnderwearIncontinence Underwear for Men

Women's Disposable Underwear Incontinence Underwear for Women

With impermeable backsides and a cloth-like outer layers, disposable underwear options offer soft comfort, discretion and superior leakage protection over guards or underwear liners. Disposable underwear are perfect if you are mobile or semi-mobile.

It's also easy to keep a few extra pairs of disposable underwear stashed strategically around - maybe a few in the car or at the cottage. If there is an accident, no worries. Grab a new pair and get on with the day - no muss, no fuss.

Significant bladder or fecal incontinence protection options

Disposable briefs (with tabs on the side that make them easy to open / close), also called adult diapers—are another option if you are away from home and need to change.

Men's Disposable Briefs (Adult Diapers)

Men's briefs for incontinence

Women's Disposable Briefs (Adult Diapers)

Women's disposable briefs or adult diapers

With disposable briefs, the side tabs make changing quick and easy, and you get superior protection for leakage over incontinence underwear. In fact, some of these products can hold as much as the equivalent of 44 oz.

It’s important to point out that these briefs do not look like regular underwear so they may not be your first choice, but with the right fit (back to that hip size issue) they will offer a snug fit and be discreet under clothes.

In fact, disposable briefs (or adult diapers) can be a bit of a life saver on long trips where access to bathrooms - or even finding accessible bathrooms (or any bathroom at all!) - might be a challenge.

Additional bladder leak protection options: bed and chair covers

Washable, reusable, absorbent furniture protection

Today's waterproof mats or covers are machine washable. Available in different sizes and colours, these can products will save your favourite chair or the mattress.

Bed pads, chair pads and bedding to help manage incontinence

 Protective mats for chairs and beds

These range in size from a 'standard' chair cover (1.5'x1.5' or 19"x19") to pads that go across the bed, or even cover the full length of a twin mattress.

These waterproof mats are designed to protect furniture from all sorts of fluids. They lie flat, on top of your furniture and stay in place with either a grippy material on the back or with mattress tucks-ins.

Disposable absorbent furniture protection

Disposable underpads help keep linens, mattresses, chairs, sofas and other surfaces (think car or wheelchair) dry and clean. Soft, absorbent and durable even when wet — and are even strong enough for overnight.

Disposable absorbent bed and chair pads

Underpads offer rapid absorption with strong, cloth-like backsheets that  resist tearing as your parents moves around. The outer layer is soft and rustle-free to minimize sleep interruption.

How to get the right products today

We're at the 3rd and final to-do; getting the right products for your needs.

My Liberty carries all the products we've explained here - you'll find them in our Men's Collection or our Women's Collection.

You can order any of them online anytime. Or contact us by email or call toll free at 1 (888) 800-4356 and we'll help you make a choice and place the order.

We deliver across Canada, and we can ship the products directly to your address. Once you figure out the right products, we can schedule deliveries at whatever frequency makes the most sense for you. The products will show up magically, just like any other online order.

Trust us when we say we've been there and we know how to help. Every day, we work with customers to solve what feels like an overwhelming problem. It isn't. Get in touch anytime - we've got you covered.

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  • Cindy Clegg
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