Learn About Absorbent Products For Bladder Leakage | NAFC
Learn about the wide range of absorbent products available to manage your incontinence and #bladderleakage and why form, fit and function is so important.
Being an adult means understanding situations and being able to take action in order to create a better, happier life. And while the idea of wearing an absorbent product may take some getting used to, the freedom it gives back makes it all very worthwhile.
Pay close attention to labels and select products designed for urinary incontinence because they have super absorbent polymers that absorb urine and expand by as much as 20 times for maximum absorbency.
Among the features, fit is the most important factor when selecting an absorbent so chose a size that accommodates your body type. Next, be sure to look for absorbents that wick moisture away from the body so as to protect sensitive skin.
As product lines are constantly being refined and upgraded, there is a wide range of new closure designs, such as re-closeable tapes and hook-and-loop fasteners. These features offer better flexibility and economic practicality, as well as a more secure fit.
Learn the different product names and how they might be of use to you.
- Liners. Generally used for light to moderate incontinence, these one-size-fits-all items are designed to to be worn with regular underwear.
- Pads. Heavy incontinence. Designed to provide comfort, fit, and discretion, pads are available in a variety of thicknesses and absorbency levels. Can be worn with regular underwear or reusable briefs.
- Male Drip Collector. Light to moderate incontinence. Designed for use with stretch mesh briefs or close-fitting underwear, the shield slips over and around penis to absorb small amounts of urine thanks to the waterproof backing.
- Male Guard. Light to moderate incontinence. An elasticized pouch provides a cup-like fit for protection and comfort. Held in place by adhesive strip and worn with close-fitting underwear. May have foam backing for extra protection.
- Collector Undergarment. The term "undergarment" originally referred to an absorbent product held in place by reusable, sometimes washable, straps. The straps are usually held in place with buttons, snaps, or Velcro.
- Fitted Brief with Elastic Legs. For moderate to heavy incontinence. This one-piece garment is designed with elastic at the waist and legs for a close fit and prevention of leakage. For day and night use.
- Fitted Brief without Elastic Legs. For moderate to heavy incontinence. Most have a cloth-like outer cover that is gentle on the skin.
- Protective Underwear. For moderate to heavy incontinence. Convenience is the name of the game with this one-piece, underwear-like design that pulls up and down easily. Made with cloth-like material and features soft elastics.
- Pad and Pants System. Some products combine a disposable pad with washable, reusable underwear made of cotton or a cotton/polyester blend. For moderate to heavy incontinence. The pads are designed to be worn only with specialty mesh or knit pants.
- Liner. Absorbent washable cloth liner or pad. Must be held in place by protective pants. Some may have leak resistant backing.
- Stretch Mesh Brief. Highly elastic, soft, form-fitting, cool, comfortable mesh stretch pants to hold any size liner or pad in place. The pant is not waterproof, so it is recommended that the reusable liner or pad have leak resistant backing or that a disposable absorbent liner or pad be inserted. Washable and reusable.
- Contoured Flat Cloth. Washable, reusable cloth sized for adults held in place by tabs, elastic, snaps, or Velcro. May have elastic at leg openings to help prevent leakage.
- Leak Resistant Pants. Pants made of leak resistant material designed for extra protection for those with heavy to total incontinence who wear a full brief or undergarment for absorption. Usually made of cotton, nylon, vinyl, or polyester. Elastic legs for close-fit. Non-breathable fabrics are not recommended to be worn for an extended length of time because of the risk of skin irritation.
There are also gender-specific absorbents, offering a whole new level of choices.
- Female-Style Panties. Fitted panty tailored especially for women. Often made of 100% cotton with multiple layers in the crotch for absorption. They are particularly well suited for those who suffer from mild to moderate loss of urine.
- Men’s Protective Support. Resembles jockstrap (athletic supporter) with waterproof cup. Used with disposable or reusable cup inserts.
- Men’s Fitted Brief. Tailored with a fly front for men. Some have a zipper. Some have a leak protective panel. Used with disposable or reusable pads or liners.
- Men’s Boxer-Style Shorts. Boxer style shorts with absorbent fabric in the crotch. Fully washable.