Managing Bariatric Incontinence

The scourge of incontinence knows no bounds. Men and women alike can suffer from this embarrassing disorder. Things become even worse when you are a bariatric patient. The points out that being overweight increases pressure on the bladder and surrounding muscles which makes them weaker and can allow urine to leak out when you simply sneeze or cough. Skincare for bariatric patients can be more difficult and therefore leave them more susceptible to rashes, sores, and skin infections from skin that is constantly wet.

Desperately Seeking Help?

Treating incontinence is an exercise in diligence and being overweight just adds to the equation. Major complications can be avoided by developing and adhering to a maintenance plan designed to minimize exposure to dangerous moisture. Bariatric patients that opt for surgery to help with weight reduction can also see an increase in fecal incontinence as a result of the surgery. Many sufferers may not even realize what’s available to them to help maintain a healthy lifestyle. They can try:

  • Bariatric Briefs: These are designed to be worn like every day underwear, but offer the wearer the peace of mind of incontinence protection. The Tranquility Bariatric Disposable Brief provides comfortable protection, while offering providing greater mobility and self-esteem by protecting skin and controlling odor. Many manufacturers of adult briefs offer bariatric versions. For instance, the First Quality Prevail Specialty Briefs are not only available in youth and adult sizes, but are available up to a 94” waist.
  • Underpads: Another way to keep moisture from delicate skin is through the use of underpads. For bariatric patients that need to be repositioned in bed, the MTS SafetySure MovEase Reusable Underpads with Handles is 100% waterproof to protect linens and mattresses, while wicking moisture away and minimizing skin irritation. One economic option is the Medline Ultrasorbs Extra Strength Drypad and Drawpad . These can be easily disposed of and are specifically designed for bariatric patients up to 600 pounds.
  • Adult Incontinence Washcloths: Skincare is vital for anyone dealing with incontinence, but for larger patients this becomes even more increasingly important. Avoiding wipes that have alcohol is a great first step since alcohol can dry skin, leading to cracking and infection. The First Quality Prevail Adult Incontinence Washcloths help bariatric patients protect their skin since they are alcohol free and the container seals to prevent washcloth dry out. A good rule of thumb for perineal skin care is soft and dry, so the Tena CliniGuard Disposable Dry Wipes can be your ticket to skin health. Designed to quickly and gently cleanse the skin, they are perfect for perineal skin care.
  • Liners: For those who wish to use their existing underwear or incontinence pants, liners can be just what the doctor ordered. Held in place by adhesive strips, they are worn inside your underpants. Medline Moliform Adult Incontinence Disposable Contoured Brief Diaper Liners help prevent leakage from the front and back and have an absorbent core to reduce odor. Many manufacturers utilize a moisture indicator to provide an easy, visual way to know when change is needed. The Medline Ultra-Soft Disposable Cloth-Like Incontinent Liners keeps moisture away from your skin and have a body contoured designed for comfort and fit.

  • Protection from Fecal Incontinence: In order to combat obesity, many bariatric patients opt to have surgery to help with weight loss. Losing weight is the obvious byproduct of this surgery, but another side effect can be incontinence. In this instance, fecal incontinence is more prevalent. Using a pad specifically designed for fecal incontinence can help immensely. The Abri-San Special Shaped Pad for Fecal Incontinence is specially designed with built in pockets to contain contents while preventing irritation.

Managing incontinence can seem like a daunting task and can be even more difficult for heavier bariatric patients. Finding what works for you may be a matter of trial and error or even a team effort with your doctor or nurse. Once your plan is developed, diligence is required and any problems should be immediately reported to your physician so that any complications or issues can be dealt with before they become major issues.


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