Hi. My mom is 81. She fell and broke both hips almost a year ago. She is now living at home and uses a wheelchair or a walker. She has nighttime urinary incontinence (?? — she pees her bed every night). This is because she does not want to risk a nighttime trip to the toilet. She wears a diaper at night, but her clothes and the pads on her bed are drenched every morning. She launders the soiled items, and uses wipes to clean herself up every morning.

Besides the drudgery of dealing with this daily (which she never complains about), we worry about her skin. She claims that it is fine, but she is not a complainer and tends to gloss over problems. She and my father live alone in a state far from their children, so the kids cannot verify.

In researching online, I have seen external female urinals. If we could convince my mom to try these, does anyone have any knowledge about them? It would need to work for a woman lying flat on her back in bed...

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Hello to everyone who has responded, and THANK YOU! I had to look up a lot of new terms! I’m flying across the country to see both my parents in a couple days, so will be having a hard look at how Mom is managing her nighttime needs. Thank you for all the excellent suggestions, and happy to hear any others! XOXO
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Reply to Momdadweej23

As your mother is able to use a walker, I assume she is able to stand and bear weight?

That being so, I should start with a good, stout commode placed beside her bed, which she can reach by sitting up, swinging her legs round to sit on the edge of the bed, then transfer to by standing and stepping round. She should be able to do this without at any time having to let go of balance supports (balance supports might include, for example, a bedstick or bed rail, her walking frame, and the arms of the commode).

You might also have a look at which brand and type of night-time diaper she is using, and compare a few others for her to try.

If she's amenable to the idea, it might be helpful for her to hire short-term in-home care for 2 x visits per day - one to help her get ready for bed, and the other to help her get up in the mornings. For example only, our service would visit her between seven and nine at night, and at seven or eight in the morning, and support her with managing her own care; but this is about reablement, not about making her dependent on care. The idea is to find routines and techniques that could help her manage things better, but independently and confidently.

If she doesn't like that suggestion, another would be to ask an occupational therapist for advice. Are you sure that her anxiety about the risk of falling is the whole story? If it is, or mostly, then it's a shame that this should be allowed to spoil her quality of life when there should be several ways of solving the difficulty that will suit her.
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Reply to Countrymouse

I used the peapod mats for Luz. kept the bed dry and they are washable. She would try to get to the bathroom but did not always make it. I would then have to clean the carpet. Much easier than stripping the bed at 3:00 in the morning.
I also used them on the furniture and certain areas on the floor.
I might have to do laundry two or three times a day. Still easier than all of the other work involved.
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Reply to OldSailor

I read about the external urinals but didn’t think would work for my Mom as looks like you need to remain still and my Mom tosses and turns a lot. I think the bedside commode might work if your Mom is aware that she has to go and is just concerned about falling getting to the bathroom. I have doubled up depends, pads inside depends, and recently changed to booster pad inserts in depends at night. Most nights this works and bed pad is dry. Washed thoroughly in the morning and no skin breakdown at all. My Mom has dementia and unaware of need to go. As long as she washes up in the AM should be ok. Last thought, if booster pad is used she could remove it if aware during the night and leave the depends on until she gets up. Good luck.
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Reply to Sweetstuff

Our mother's Depends leaked often so we started putting on two night defense briefs every night, and they rarely leak. Just an idea.
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Reply to Katybee

I have a portable commode I strapped to the foot of her bed (so she does not push it over).  We tried one of the new external urinals, and it did not work that well, YMMV
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Reply to FloridaDD

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