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Incontinence pads/pants

(16 Posts)
Cheadle Wed 01-Mar-17 18:08:22

Hi, thought I'd post on here to try and get some quick answers. Hope that's okay.
Elderly aunt has recently moved into a care home . She's only been there a couple of weeks. Today one of the carers told me to go out and buy her a supply of incontinence pants and handed me an empty Boots Staydry Pants bag saying "this is the sort she needs".
As I was on my way out of the care home when this conversation took place I didn't get a chance to go back and speak to aunt about this. However, now that I've had time to think about it I'm a bit puzzled. I'm sure when aunt was still living at her own home that she was getting incontinence pads supplied by the NHS.
Would I be unreasonable to ring the care home manager and speak to her about this? Or is it expected and normal for my aunt to pay for these items herself?

LadyCallandraDaviot Wed 01-Mar-17 18:10:05

In my limited experience, there is a ridiculously low amount supplied free (something like 3 a day) so many families do provide extra.

x2boys Wed 01-Mar-17 18:15:04

homes should provide pads etc however as Lady says the NHS will only supply so many a day my son is in nappies hes nearly seven [ he has disabillities] we only get three a day and they always run out.

angeldelightedme Wed 01-Mar-17 18:16:56

Yes. Residents in care homes get them on the NHS just the same as if they were at home.but , there is an assessment procedure to go through first so yes, I would speak to the manager and have them get the ball rolling.

londonrach Wed 01-Mar-17 18:18:52

I visit people in nursing homes. Sadly the nhs is limited how many per day they give free so families are having to buy the extra. Yanbu but each patient gets a restricted number.

Penfold007 Wed 01-Mar-17 18:28:36

My aunt was moved from hospital to a care home and we had to buy and bring in pads for her until the home could get them prescribed for her. Care homes charge for everything. You need to speak to the care home manager about how you can arrange NHS supplies. Just to make you aware my DM prefers the pants to the pads so we can't get them via incontinence services so I just buy them.

Tiptoethr0ughthetulips Wed 01-Mar-17 18:44:31

I've been out of District Nursing for two years so may have changed, but at the point I left the max inco products we could prescribe were 4 a day. The criteria for qualifying was strict.
Nursing homes often provide pads but I'm residential the residents usually need to buy or top up there NHS supply.

bloodyteenagers Wed 01-Mar-17 19:00:55

The supply is ridiculous 3 or 4 pads a day.
Doesn't take any consideration either for upset stomachs.

angeldelightedme Wed 01-Mar-17 22:36:08

Residential care homes just provide food, accommodation and care.Anything else the resident has to provide

PickAChew Wed 01-Mar-17 22:47:28

It would be worth ringing if only to find out whether they're able to claim her allocation of free pads and how many a day she typically gets through. No point rocking up with 2 packs of them if that's only going to last 2 days. She may get through 6 or 7 a day, or may wet heavily or soil frequently and need a dozen or more.

JustWantToBeDorisAgain Wed 01-Mar-17 23:10:49

Agree with the above posters certainly in our area residential homes have a direct link with the continence team and can get assessments completed and pads provided if the criteria is met. Max 4 a day locally ( or 2 a day if pull up pants ( and then only for those with dementia!) )

It may be they are in the process of assessment ( although sounds like she has already been assessed by dn's) or this needs to be followed up there may be an overlap or her she has increased and she needs 'topping up'

Lilmisskittykat Wed 01-Mar-17 23:17:16

One of the women I work with mum is in a care home. She had this battle with pads too when the home changed from as and when needed to three a day, which wasn't enough for her mum.

She go onto the council adult social care about it. Her mum was private and paying 550 ish a week to be there so we couldn't work out how the home couldn't afford the pads she needed. This was battled out with home owners/ sister and council and resolved. So hopefully you just need to speak to right person to apply pressure?

I really feel for those elderly who are in homes without families to top up supplies to meet their needs... Who cares for them? Are they just left to be wet/soiled? Surely a persons dignity counts for something?

angeldelightedme Wed 01-Mar-17 23:43:06

Her mum was private and paying 550 ish a week to be there

That is a shoestring budget! Nobody can afford to look after elderly people properly on that!

Lilmisskittykat Fri 03-Mar-17 09:49:09

Fair enough I don't know It seemed like a lot of money

It's takes no money to treat people with dignity, place them in front on a tv instead of turned at a door, not ignore them at night when frightened, ensure that they get their own laundered knickers to wear not someone else's, speak to them not sit on a phone, speak kindly to them.

Lucky for friends Mum they moved her and she was much happier and saw out her last days not fretting.

ElvishArchdruid Fri 03-Mar-17 10:27:59

They are supplied by the NHS, it depends on the District Nurse from experience.

I would look for a cheaper brand with same strength, I have back ups of a variety of superstores which are fine. It depends if she's doubly incontinent as then you'd be looking at more like a nappy, which are quite expensive.

I don't think it's unreasonable to think that this should be under the care homes remit, they can buy in bulk and for better prices. I've used the full nappy type which lies in your underwear, you don't seal it round, I've also used the ones that are similar to old sanitary wear.

Definitely find out what the funding provision is. Speak to them about a contact number for the DN so you can ask about what their standard provision is, also during exceptional circumstances, say repeated changes due to diet and so on. Also get some barrier cream so it's available should she need it.

Hope this helps.

tabbymog Fri 03-Mar-17 17:48:54

Warning: long post.

I don't know about the NHS funding situation in detail although I know it's poor. I'm severely incontinent (urinary only) due to nerve damage caused by spinal stenosis and episodes of cauda equina syndrome, and have been for six years so I’ve trialled a lot of products. This is my experience: Boots' incontinence products are poor quality and need to be changed much more often than other brands of equivalent rating. Boots also sell another brand, I think it’s Attends, and when I’ve tried their own I’ve thought that it’s an Attends product that’s failed quality control because Attends perform much better than Boots’ for me, although there are better products for me on the market. There's a huge range of these things out there, but the choice from online suppliers in UK is very limited in comparison with what's available from continental European suppliers. Generally you can buy ‘by the pack’ or ‘by the case’, a case being four to eight packs depending on the brand, and there’s a definite cost saving.

If family are going to have to pay for what she needs, it’s worthwhile consulting your aunt on what she prefers. The UK supplier I buy from, Incontinence Choice, supplies individual samples (paid for) so she could try the different types and brands. I also buy online from a Dutch firm ABDL Factory, but I tend to hit my credit card for it, because the delivery is so expensive I try to buy only four times a year. They also supply samples, in packs according to type and size. From Incontinence Choice I buy the Lille Supreme pants (pull ups) I wear during the day, and from ABDL the Absorin brand slips (also called briefs) I wear at night. For some reason ABDL don’t sell the pants I wear in my size but if they did I’d buy both products from them. For both Tena would probably be my second choice but they’re definitely at the high end of the price range.

There are basically three options and the choice for your aunt depends on whether she’s bedbound or not, and obviously what she’s comfortable in. What the home gave you may not actually be the best for her and if you can buy her some samples of the different types to try, you’d be giving her a lot of help. The pads like the old sanitary pads need to be worn with net fixation pants otherwise they aren’t held close enough to the body and are more suitable for someone who is fairly active. There are pants (often called pull-ups) that are like underwear. These are also meant for ambulant people but they’re the easiest to change, especially if someone travels a lot as I do and have to do it in a public accessible toilet. The care home probably buys them because they're likely the easiest to change on a bedbound patient. They’re also not the most absorbent because they can get very heavy if the absorbency is too great, lose their security and sometimes show if the wearer is wearing pants with a top that doesn’t go to about mid-thigh. This also applies to the pads. With me they don’t protect me through the night either, due to the relatively low level of absorbency (1950ml).

The recommended best option for someone bedbound, and for other users at night, are the slips, also called briefs or diapers. These are the ones like a nappy, they have tabs at the back which stick to the front of the slip, some can only be sealed once, most now can be resealed but it’s something to look out for in the product description. Avoid the ones which have sticky tabs front and back, the wearer needs to fit the product with those and the plastic tabs can be very uncomfortable if in the wrong place. The ones with tabs only at the back and a large ‘landing area’ at the front are much easier to fit. This type of protection is the best fitting so most secure, and also has the highest absorbencies. It also needs help from another person to fit properly unless your aunt is still quite agile; you have to lay it out on a chair or the bed, sit on it, pull the back up, pull the front up while holding the back wings tucked under your elbows, spread the front wings across tummy, pull the back wings around to where they’re wanted to give the closest fit at the front, open the sticky tabs on the back, then press the tabs down on the front landing area.

Some of these slips (briefs) have an absorbent layer nearly all the way across, others are simply large pads stitched to the different style backing. The extra absorbent layer adds to the protection but it also adds a lot to the comfort as it keeps a bigger area dry and comfortable.

All these products come with special backing sheets that can be PE (polyethylene – plastic), completely waterproof but possibly not the best for a sensitive skin as it’s not breathable and also noisy; PUL (don’t know what it stands for but it’s a non-rustling breathable material), and there’s also something else the name I don’t know, that’s also a breathable fabric-like material. This breathable backing is a big factor in choice for me otherwise I get nappy rash. You can’t use petroleum-based products like Vaseline with incontinence wear, it ruins the product’s absorbency.

Don’t be taken too much by absorbency ratings, they’re only useful for comparisons between products. These things are tested in a laboratory and the rating figures given are the maximum amount of liquid they’ll absorb which is always beyond the tolerable wearable level.

There’s no getting away from the fact that these things are expensive but there’s also no getting away from the fact that the right product, comfortable as well as making the wearer feel secure, makes the difference between allowing them to take part in their chosen activities and enjoy their social life, and feeling too insecure to go out. The right product, changed at the right intervals, will also give greater protection from the normal hazards of being incontinent like sores and nappy rash.


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