The Best Incontinence Management Tips for Those with Dementia

  1. Select your words very carefully. Rather than describing incontinence products as “diapers,” for instance, call them “briefs” or “pull-up underwear.” Nevertheless, take the cue from your loved one; if he or she chooses to make use of the word “diapers” and appears to be comfortable with that, then follow along.
  2. Remove regular underwear from the older adult’s dresser. In order to avoid frustration or resistance to wearing incontinence products, make certain that those are the only choice in his or her wardrobe.
  3. Test a variety of products. With different brands, sizes, and absorbency levels on the market, it might take some time and experience to find the one that is most comfortable and effective.
  4. Use backup products overnight. To help stop the senior loved one from waking up during the night from incontinence-related issues, try inserting booster pads within the absorbent underwear, and use products marked for heaviest coverage. Waterproof mattress protectors and disposable bed pads are usually also extremely helpful.
  5. Ensure easy access into the bathroom. Complete a walk-through of the areas the senior loved one spends time in to determine how straightforward it really is for him or her to make it to the bathroom. Specifically, eliminate any clutter, cords, or throw rugs in the senior’s walking path to protect against falls.
  6. If an accident does happen… Maintain a calm demeanor so as not to offend (or further upset) the senior loved one, and say something like, “It would appear that something might have spilled on your pants; let’s get you some clean clothes,” or “It appears as if your pants are wet; that happens occasionally.”
  7. Address unwillingness to keep products on. For older adults who routinely attempt to remove incontinence products, first see if you’re able to ascertain why. If discomfort is a factor, try different types of products for one that may be more comfortable. Or the senior may be attempting to change if feeling a sense of wetness.

In all instances, keep an eye on the senior’s skin for signs and symptoms of rash or irritation, and contact his or her medical doctor if noted.

For even more incontinence management tips, or to find out about Seniorcorp’s reliable, professional nursing care Suffolk and surrounding area residents trust, reach out to us at 757-640-0557 or via our online form. We serve throughout Norfolk, Chesapeake, Portsmouth, Virginia Beach and Suffolk.