What to do: Elderly Bed Wetting
Elderly Bed Wetting
Elderly urinary incontinence can be caused by various reasons, including health conditions such as Parkinson’s, Dementia and prostate cancer, overactive bladder, and medication side effects.
Urinary incontinence is frustrating for both the elderly and the caregiver. It affects the confidence of the elderly when they realise that they are unable to control their excretion. The odour emitted and stained surface would affect the family members and caregiver.
Hence, it is critical to understand how to handle elderly bed wetting with the correct tools and equipment.
Reason for Bed Wetting
1) Wrong diaper size
Selecting a diaper size for the user will cause leakage at the groin area. Leakage usually occurs on the second or third pee. This not because the diaper has low absorption rate but because the weight on the diaper after the first absorption will cause the diaper to sag, resulting in gaps between the diaper and the groin.
2) Not changing the diaper in a timely manner
Each diaper brand has a stated absorbent rate. It is advisable to follow the instructions provided by the company on the packaging. Each pee cycle for a adult is 400-500ml. For reference, the table below shows the absorption rate of different types of diaper.
|Type||Absorption rate (ml)|
|Tape diaper||up to 1200ml|
|Pull up/ pants diaper||up to 800ml|
As it is difficult to assess how many cycles of urination occurred, the caregiver can tap on the diaper at every 2 hr interval to check on how much urination is in the diaper. After the first few cycles, the caregiver will be able to determine the interval to change the diaper.
Suggested tools for Elderly urinary incontinence
Tape diaper is a more suitable choice for overnight wear because of its higher absorption rate. As there will be less movement and will be worn for a longer period of time, a tape diaper is a great choice. For day time where a change if diaper is required, a pull up diaper will be a great choice as it will be easier for the caregiver or the user to change.
Cleaning a stained mattress is a tough chore. Frequent occurrence of uncontrolled bed wetting will eventually cause a toll on the caregiver. It will also affect the hygiene level of the environment the user is in, increasing the risk of diseases.
To prevent the bed from staining, caregivers can consider using disposable underpads to prevent the bed from staining. Disposable underpads are waterproof layer with absorption capabilities which can be placed under the user to prevent fluid from seeping into the mattress.
How to use disposable underpads?
Use a larger size that can cover the pelvis area underpad on the bed. Underpad should be use direct under the user pelvis before the bedsheet.
At Medical Assistance4u
Our team of medically trained staff at Medical Assistance4u can provide you with consultation services to assist you in providing good bedbound care for your loved ones.
We have a range of assistive equipment to support caregivers and ensure they are working in safe and comfortable conditions. Services like home visits from our nurses and delivery services for daily needs products are also available to support you.