My Mother is in the earlier stages of dementia and has severe incontinence. She absolutely refuses to wear undergarments- suggestions? - AgingCare.com

My Mother is in the earlier stages of dementia and has severe incontinence. She absolutely refuses to wear undergarments- suggestions?

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She has both bladder and bowel issues, and it is a constant battle trying to keep the floors, clothes, and furniture from smelling so bad.

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Does your mom go out much? And are you able to reason with her? My mom did become bladder incontinent early and I was able to reason with her at the time. Mom went out a lot - was very social and I pointed out that it was a heck of a lot more embarrassing to have to leave a room with a giant wet spot on her backside and down her legs than wearing a depends that no one even realized she had on. I appealed to moms vanity and pride and it worked. If you aren't able to reason this type of point out with your mom, then yes - sorry to say the dementia is way past "early". If you haven't already, buy her a pack and leave it in her bathroom - that also worked with my mom. I guess she felt more in control if the timing of the decision to put one on was actually hers. Plus, I think it helped that mom could look at one and see that they weren't that bad looks wise. At least with the Depends brand they come in a light peach color and are really very trim - fitting nicely under most cloths.
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DoingMyBest1, if your Mom is still able to understand that there are issues with her incontinence, you may have to do what my Mom did regarding Dad.

Dad refused to wear Depends, and he had his fair share of "accidents" which my Mom had to clean up... mind you, Mom was in her 90's.... eventually she got tired of doing all that difficult cleaning. So the next few times Dad had an accident, she would hand him the cleaning spray, the rag, and the brush. Before you knew it, Dad was wearing Depends :)
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Yes, it sounds like a more advance stage of dementia if she is bladder and bowel incontinent and refuses to wear undergarments, though, double incontinence did strike my cousin pretty quickly. (In less than a year.) However, she took to depends very easily.

I agree with Pamstegma about getting help with her and better floors, equipment to help, but I would also look into the adult onsies that button in the back and prevent the wearer from taking them off. Of course, you still have the challenge on getting them on her in the first place. I'm not sure what to tell you. Maybe, others here have some experience with that. If her resistance is due to a delusion or anxiety, perhaps meds could help calm her mood. I would discuss it with her doctor.
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This is not early dementia, but later stage, as is the battle to keep them clean. Look at alzinfo.org for a breakdown of the 7 stages. Obviously you have been caring for a long time. At some point, you may want to hire aides and convert to all vinyl floors and furnishings OR you find a facility that has this. The facility will not let them out of bed without wearing depends. You can do this yourself, but for some reason, they are more willing to follow orders from a nurse.
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