Guide to Caring For the Elderly with Incontinence

Guide for caring for the Elderly with Incontinence

For many people middle age means a new reality of caring for aging parents and other family members. This can be a complicated and time consuming issue that is made even more so if the elderly person has incontinence. Many caregivers are at first reluctant to discuss the issue of incontinence with their elderly family member. However, it is crucial to understand that simply ignoring the problem doesn’t help anyone. Both you and the elderly person will suffer if the issue of incontinence is not addressed.

Keep in mind that the topic of incontinence needs to be brought up gently and carefully. This is an emotional topic due to the personal and intimate nature of the problem. However, experts stress that it should be discussed as the medical problem that it is. When your elderly loved one sees that you are only interested in helping them and not judging they will be far more receptive to what you have to say.

While you are seeking out medical treatment there are some practical tips that make caring for an elderly person with incontinence more effective and little easier. These tips are-
  • Help with wardrobe selection-Many elderly do not understand that clothing can be a potential barrier to managing incontinence. Helping your elderly loved one choose clothes that are easy to put on and take off is a big step toward better managing incontinence. This can be a difficult transition for some elderly to make. However, choosing clothes that have Velcro, elastic bands, or any type of easy removal devices will be a big help.
  • Have the right incontinence products-Today, there is such a wide variety of incontinence products that anyone who is experiencing incontinence can find the right product for their needs. Whether your elderly loved one has mild incontinence or far more severe there is a product that will help to provide the highest levels of protection. Make sure that you take the time to choose the right product to fit their lifestyle, needs, and level of incontinence.
  • Focus on ease and safety at home-Many times you may not realize that simply getting to the bathroom can be an obstacle. Make sure that your elderly family member has a clear path to the bathroom. It may also be necessary to take a close look at the safety of the bathroom. Installing hand rails and a raised toilet seat can promote the safety of your loved one, as well.
  • Plan ahead-If you will be leaving the house it is important to know where the most accessible restrooms are. This will help you to assist your loved one to the restroom at the first sign of needing one. You don’t want to have to stop to ask where restrooms are located. This rule should be followed when you are in a restaurant or theater, as well. If you are traveling on the bus, train or on a plane you may want to request an aisle seat so that your family member can easily get to the restroom.

To find out more about all aspects of incontinence please visit For help and guidance in selecting incontinence products please click on

The Caregiver Partnership helps caregivers and their loved ones with answers to their care giving questions, including information about home health care products and supplies, from our Wisconsin-based team of Product Specialists who are all current or former caregivers. The company’s web site provides the largest online library of resources on subjects most important to caregivers — from arthritis to assisted living, and Parkinson’s to prostate cancer — as well as access to more than 3,000 home care products for incontinence, skin care, mobility, home safety and daily living aids. The Caregiver Partnership was founded in 2004 by Lynn Wilson of Neenah, Wis. Visit to learn more or call 1-800-985-1353.


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