Incontinence Pants and Products

One of the primary decisions in buying incontinence pants and products is whether to select disposable or reusable styles. Many people find that the answer is to use both, choosing either disposable or reusable according to situation and circumstances.
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There are significant advantages to both reusable and disposable incontinence products. A comparison of the two types based on comfort, convenience, effectiveness, and price shows that while both are strong on some points, neither comes out ahead on all counts.

Comfort is a highly individual concept, and whether you consider cloth or disposable products more comfortable will depend to a large extent on what comfort factors you consider most important.

Reusable products are generally made from cotton, flannel, gauze, terrycloth, or similar fabrics and are definitely soft, which can be very important to someone with sensitive skin. Disposable products are rarely as soft as fabric, but because most are made using several absorbent layers designed to wick moisture, they can actually keep skin dryer.

However, unlike reusables that remain intact even when saturated, disposables may break down and clump when wet. Reusable fabrics are cool and breathable, while some find that the nonwoven material used is disposables tends to lead to uncomfortable heat buildup.

Reusable products are made in a wide variety of styles, many of which are virtually indistinguishable from “ordinary” underwear, while disposable undergarments are typically somewhat more bulky. But while reusables may require the use of waterproof pants to guard against leaking, most disposables are made with a waterproof outer layer that makes additional protective garments optional or unnecessary.

Like comfort, convenience is a highly subjective concept. Reusable products are highly absorbent and worn under waterproof pants or other special garments, they can provide an outstanding level of leak protection. However, they offer a lot less flexibility when it comes to changing.

Disposables that can simply be discarded and replaced when wet or soiled can give the wearer a lot of personal freedom to work, travel, or participate in activities. Reusables that require laundering are less practical for those who are away from home or who don’t have easy access to a “soaking pail” or other laundry facilities throughout the day.

Cost is a major factor for anyone purchasing incontinence supplies, and both reusable and disposable have cost advantages. Reusable adult incontinence products can be difficult to find in retail stores are generally more expensive to buy initially, but because they can be used over and over they are very economical in the long run. Disposable products are generally readily available in just about any grocery, drug, or discount store at an affordable price, but because they’re used only once they must be constantly replenished.

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