by Marilyn Stevenson, a support group member with the Lewy Body Dementia Resource Center

Incontinence is a topic that some people are uncomfortable speaking about and/or don’t know how to best handle.  A majority of people with Parkinson’s and Lewy Body Demenita will be affected by this issue.

Almost everyone’s biggest fear is incontinence. Here is some helpful information, if and when incontinence may occur.

At first, the over-the-counter pull-up type incontinence underwear may be fine for a while.  When these products stop doing the job, it’s time to move on to the medical supply products that can be purchased online.  I have had great luck with two companies, and  These incontinence products have varying capacity levels. There are nighttime versions that will have higher capacities than daytime underwear. You will need both daytime and nighttime products. If at some point the nighttime underwear needs more absorbency, there are booster liners that fit into them.

If you’re having bowel incontinence it becomes easier to use the tab type underwear so that you’re not pulling them down and having to step out of them.  Always use disposable gloves when changing the underwear. With bowel incontinence, wearing two gloves on each hand is helpful so that you can peel one off and still have gloves on when they get soiled.  The largest disposable washcloths are best for washing one’s self or another and they are also available through these companies.

Protecting the bed and mattress is also important and can save you lots of work. First, purchase four of the largest waterproof reusable bed pads you can find. Place one pad between the mattress and the sheet and one on top of the sheet. You will also need the largest disposable bed pads sometimes referred to as chux. The disposable bed pad will be placed on top of the reusable bed pad so it can just be thrown out. This will save you lots of additional laundry which we know you don’t need.

When going out for several hours, always bring an emergency bag including gloves, wipes and extra underwear.  Always refer to these products as incontinence underwear! Hope this helps.


You will find my book Parkinson’s: A Love Story with Dementia for Dessert on Amazon.  Your feedback and reviews are most welcome.

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