A Review of the Best Pads for Lighter Bladder Control

Navigating the world of pads or LBL can be confusing. 
Light bladder leakage, or incontinence, is a common ailment. In fact, about 17% of women and 16% men over 18 years old suffer from LBL, which is about 12.2 million people in the US. That number increases to over 20% in adults over 40. The symptoms can be only light leakage when not reaching a toilet fast enough, or severe and regular leakage. It is twice as common for women to suffer LBL than men.

When selecting the best pads for light bladder control, you want to first identify what type of incontinence you have. There are eight types of incontinence:

1. Stress incontinence- This is when urine leaks because the person is being active or puts stress or strain on the bladder. Coughing, sneezing, laughing, exercise, etc. can all lead to leaks. For some, those leaks may be only a few drops, and for others it might be a more. For some only light activity is required for leaks, and others vigorous activity is required.

2. Urge incontinence- This is when leaking happens without warning. This is when an overactive bladder contracts without you wanting it to.

3. Overflow incontinence- This is when the bladder gets so full it overflows. Blockage of the bladder outlet may cause the overflow. Blockage or narrowing can be caused by cancer, scar tissue, or an enlarged prostate. This leads to frequent urination, or constant dribbling of urine, or both.

4. Functional incontinence- This is the most common type of incontinence among elderly with arthritis, Parkinson’s, or Alzheimer’s disease. This is when individuals are unable to control their bladder before they get to a bathroom because of limitations to movement, thinking, or communication.

5. Mixed incontinence- Some people suffer from two types of incontinence at the same time, usually stress and urge incontinence. This is most common in women.

6. Anatomic or developmental abnormalities- This is when incontinence is caused by a physical or neurological abnormality, such as a fistula or nerve damage.

7. Temporary incontinence- This is when incontinence is temporary, and caused by something like constipation, a urinary tract or vaginal infection, or are on a medication that has incontinence as a side effect.

8. Bedwetting- One out of every nine children wets the bed. It is more common in boys than girls. Most outgrow it by age 11. This can be caused by underproduction of the hormone ADH, sleeping too soundly, or heredity.

Then you want to determine what level of absorbency you will need. To help you determine what type and how severe your incontinence is, consider using a voiding diary This will give you a better idea of your absorbency needs.

There are multiple brands to choose from and each offers a range of sizes and absorbencies.
Attends- Comes in different absorbency levels, offers comfort and discretion. 

  • Elyte- Made with 100% pure cotton for greater skin comfort, ideal for those with sensitive skin. Comes in medium, heavy, and super absorbencies. 
  • Tena- Comes in different lengths and absorbencies for greater fit and discretion, shape designed for improved leak protection, and dry-fast Dual Core provides skin protection.
  • Poise- Hourglass shape to prevent bunching, and a better fit for women. Various absorbency and sizes available.
  • Prevail - Designed for stress and urge incontinence, discrete, easy to secure to underwear, and offers both skin protection and odor control.
You may also consider adding what's called a booster pad, which is designed to add further absorbency to pull on underwear or larger pads, which provide added confidence to the wearer. 

The best booster pads include:
  • Attends- This is a unisex product designed to be used with other incontinence products to improve protection by adding extra absorbency. Offers adhesive strip, and great absorbency with a thin, discrete design.
  • Tranquility topliner booster pads- Designed to increase the absorbent capacity of other incontinence products to reduce nighttime changes and leaks. 
We know navigating the world of pads or LBL can be confusing, and that there are numerous products to choose from, call us and we will be happy to explain the differences.  Learn more  about bladder control. 

Consumers buying incontinence products the first time can easily be confused which product, brand, style, size or absorbency to purchase. And once the package is opened, they can’t be returned, so mistakes can be costly. Here are some helpful resources to help you avoid this problem:

1. Explanation of types- pull-ons, adjustable underwear, briefs, undergarments.

2. Incontinence Product Finder- quickly and easily sort though nearly 500 choices.

3. Samples to try before you buy- Offers more than 100 sample options. 

Call us. We're here to help.
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About The CareGiver Partnership. The CareGiver Partnership helps caregivers and their loved ones with answers to their caregiving 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, Wisc. Visithttp://www.caregiverpartnership.com to learn more or call 1-800-985-1353.


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