Christmas is a fun but stressful time for everyone with buying presents, cooking and travelling.
If you have relatives staying this can add extra pressure, but, if that person is living with incontinence there are additional things to consider to make sure they’re comfortable. Below, you’ll find a few helpful tips on how to implement incontinence care this year.
While this may sound like the most obvious advice, the most important thing you need to do is to be prepared. Whether you have someone staying for the night or just a few hours, there are plenty of things that can be done when it comes to incontinence care.
If they’re staying for a few hours, you may feel it’s necessary to invest in furniture protection for your chairs and seats. Underpads are extremely helpful as they are suitable for all levels of incontinence and can be bought in a variety of shapes. These can be extremely helpful if the person visiting is living with another health problem that may cause incontinence.
For overnight stays, make sure you provide clean towels and bedding just in case anything happens during the night. Meanwhile, mattress protectors and specific bed pads can also be purchased to add that extra layer of incontinence prevention. Placing them in a room near to the bathroom will also be hugely beneficial, while flushable wipes, soap and air fresheners are supplies to stock up on for bathrooms.
Think about food
Something you may not know is that certain food and drink can aggravate bladders, which can have a negative effect on those living with incontinence.
While you may be rustling up an epic Christmas dinner, take the time to think about other foods you may be serving throughout the festive period. Avoid serving spicy foods and stick to healthier snacks and make sure there are enough high-fibre foods by offering the following:
- Grain-based food such as pasta, breads and cereals
- Non-citrus fruits like apples, pears or raspberries
Meanwhile, the following foods have been noted to aggravate the bladder by doctors and should be avoided:
- Caffeinated food and drinks
- Spicy food
- Citrus fruit and juice
- Milk or milk products
- Artificial sweeteners
- Carbonated beverages
This isn’t always possible, so, if you’re not 100% sure about how to manage everything, consult with the person who’s visiting to find out if they need anything specific when visiting.
When someone is living with incontinence, getting to a bathroom is highly important. Therefore, they’ll need to know where the bathrooms are at all times, so make sure you show them when they first arrive so they can excuse themselves when they need to.
Again, try to place them in a room close to the bathroom to make things easier at night and first thing in the morning. To make things a little easier, you should endeavour to show them where the washing machine is and how to use it should they need to.
Be discrete and sensitive
Aside from being prepared, the most important thing you can do is to be discrete and sensitive to those who are visiting.
Making sure you have all the correct supplies is a start, while not making a big deal about the situation is the next stage. But, if you’re not 100% sure on what needs to be done or how to manage the situation, try talking to the person beforehand to see if there’s anything you can do to make things easier.
What to do if you’re visiting
Of course, if you’re visiting then there are a few things you can do to ensure you feel comfortable and confident throughout your stay. These include:
- Overpack: while you’ll have a selection of clothes with you for your stay, always take a few extras just to be safe
- Call ahead: if there’s anything specific that you need, in terms of products or food and drink, call ahead and just make your relatives aware, this will also help to remove any embarrassment on either side
- Supplies: even if you call ahead, make sure you take some home supplies with you, just in case your relatives don’t buy the right brands or enough items
By following these simple steps in incontinence care, everyone should be taken care of this Christmas period, helping to remove any awkwardness to ensure that everyone has a wonderful Christmas time.
If you have any further questions when it comes to visiting relatives, or if you need any advice, please get in touch with us by calling 01204 895410 between 9 am and 5 pm Monday – Friday, or through our enquiry form here, and someone will get back to you within 24-hours.