Table of Contents
- Best Products for Bowel Incontinence
- What is Bowel Incontinence?
- What to Look for in Adult Incontinence Products?
- Specialty Use
- Contact Us
What is Bowel Incontinence?
Bowel incontinence, otherwise known as fecal incontinence, refers to the inability to control bowel movements. This term can be applied to anything from the occasional leak when passing gas to complete loss of bowel control.
Causes of bowel incontinence are wide-ranging and can look drastically different across individuals. Age, sex, physical traumas and preexisting disabilities are among the risk factors that can play into the development of fecal incontinence.
Physical symptoms are not the only trials people face when dealing with chronic incontinence. Loss of dignity, feelings of shame and even depression are among the kinds of emotional distress that can be caused by this medical condition. It is important to remember incontinence does not only affect older adults or those with disabilities - incontinence comes in many forms and can affect anyone.
Treating and protecting against incontinence is as much about mental wellbeing as it is physical healthcare. Finding the right incontinence products will not only keep the wearer dry and protected, but it will give them back a sense of dignity and confidence. Caring for chronic health issues can be a challenge, but finding the right supplies can significantly help improve the wearer's quality of life.
It is integral for those experiencing urinary and fecal incontinence to have access to the best adult diapers for their personal health situations. In this article, we break down what to look for when searching for the right bowel incontinence products, and also highlight six stand out products listed above that set themselves apart from different adult diapers as being some of the best options for you or your loved one.
What to Look for in Adult Incontinence Products?
When selecting the right adult diaper for you or someone you care for, it can be difficult to know where to start. One of the first big decisions that can be made is choosing the preferred or necessary style for your adult diapers. As a disclaimer, while there are products such as reusable diapers on the market, in this article we will only be discussing the disposable variety.
There are two primary styles for disposable diapers – tape-tab style briefs or a pull-up style adult diaper.
Deciding which of these two options is best for you or someone you are caring for can come down to both personal preference as well as level of mobility.
Individuals who are able to use the bathroom on their own, as well as those who change out their own incontinence products, tend to prefer pull-ups. This kind of incontinence product is the most similar to regular underwear, which can make for an easier transition when starting to use products for chronic incontinence. Additionally, because this type of adult diaper makes it easy for the wearer to take on or off, this promotes independence and can have an impact on a person's feeling of dignity and confidence.
Briefs with tabs are typically the preferred style of caregivers and are used widely across care facilities. Unlike pull-up diapers, tabbed briefs do not need to be stepped into. The ability to fasten and unfasten from the wearer makes for easy removal and is ideal for those receiving help in changing their incontinence briefs. They are also helpful as the adjustable tabs can provide a more custom and secure fit, making this the more flexible option when considering size. Below we will discuss in further detail the importance of selecting the correct size of disposable diapers.
Finding the right size is important to keeping your incontinence underwear comfortable, but it is also critical to getting the most out of the product's performance and ability to prevent leaks.
While it may seem like the bigger, the better, when it comes to absorbency, this can often lead to more leaks and even skin irritation. If the product is too large, pockets and openings are created where the urinary and fecal incontinence can escape.
We recommend taking a measurement of the widest part of your, or the wearer's, body between their waist and hip. Having these waist measurements will allow you to find which size will likely work best for you.
If you do not know, or are otherwise unable to obtain this waist/hip measurement, you can also use weight as a guideline. This secondary measurement is not the most recommended, as weight distributes differently for all body types, but this is another good way to get started in finding the right adult diaper for you.
If you're interested in trying multiple sizes to determine which will provide the most secure fit, you can find out more about requesting samples here.
Another crucial feature to look out for to find the best adult diaper for you or the person you are caring for, is absorbency.
It can be difficult to tell from just vague descriptions on packaging how absorbent certain products are, so we recommend taking a look to see if there are more exact measurements of absorbency listed. For example, the brand Tranquility lists its absorbency in both ounces and in terms of cups.
The higher level of absorbency also tends to mean more material, sometimes meaning a bulkier product. While this is not always the case, and some brands have products specially designed to balance maximum absorbency with a less bulky design such as Tranquility's Slimline Briefs, it is important to assess how much absorbency is necessary for your needs. Do you need a product for daytime activities, or for overnight use to get a good night sleep? Do you need something smaller to stay dry and comfortable, or do you need a versatile product crafted for all kinds of incontinence?
Feeling secure, dry and comfortable is a key to helping the wearer think less about managing incontinence and focus more on doing the activities they love, with greater joy and confidence.
Beyond the larger choices of style, size and absorbency, there are many other features to be considered that can take these products from being a good adult diaper, to the best adult diapers.
Material type is another preference to consider when selecting incontinence supplies. Some with sensitive skin tend to prefer clothlike products as they are softer and quieter. Others prefer poly-backed (plastic-backed diapers) as they feel more secure for incontinence protection. In the list below, we break down which options feature poly-backed or a clothlike backsheet to help you make a more informed decision.
Many of the superabsorbent adult diapers listed below are from the brand Tranquility, which boasts another unique feature – the patented Tranquility Peach Mat core. The Peach Mat absorbent core is designed to neutralize the pH of urine and prevent harmful bacteria from growing and spreading. This helps fight against urinary tract infections and works in preventing skin irritation or other issues such as diaper rash.
Additional features to look out for are leg cuffs (such as Kufguards ®), a wetness indicator, designs to minimize odors, among others to find an effective solution for urinary incontinence and bowel containment.
Everyone's health situation is different, meaning everyone's solution to their own circumstances will be different and personal to them. We list six of the best adult diapers below with a variety of these factors so that you can find the best combination of features for you or your loved one.
Below are the three tabbed-style adult diapers, also known as briefs, that we have selected as some of the best adult diapers to protect against bowel leakage. These three brief options cover many differing features from material types, accessibility in sizing, and coverage for all times of day and night.
If any of the below briefs seem like they may be the right fit for you, follow the links to their product pages for additional information on sizing, pricing and samples!
Style: Tape-tabbed Briefs
Sizes Available: S-2XL
Price Range: $17.58-$89.99
Tranquility SmartCore Briefs are one of Tranquility's most absorbent adult diapers offered on the market. They are an ideal choice for long-term maximum protection, absorbing between 2.75 (22 oz.) and 4.25 cups (34 oz.) of liquid.
To help contain fecal matter, Kufguards (leg cuffs) keep solid incontinence from escaping out of the leg holes, and Micro-hook Closure Tabs keep the diaper securely fastened. They also feature Tranquility's patented Peach Mat core that works to keep the skin healthy and free from irritation.
Beyond high levels of absorbency, this clothlike, latex-free adult diaper also has side panels designed to allow for cooling airflow and encouraging maximum breathability. This is great for odor control and creates a more comfortable experience for the wearer.
The SmartCore briefs come color-coded based on size, making it easier for caregivers to differentiate between the briefs for those they care for.
Learn more about the Tranquility SmartCore Disposable Briefs here.
Style: Tape-tabbed Briefs
Sizes Available: 3X
Price Range: $23.41-$66.95
Next up on in our trio of tape-tabbed adult diapers are the Tranquility Bariatric Briefs.
Tranquility was the first brand of its kind to recognize the need for more accessible incontinence briefs and make the change in manufacturing items for a larger range of sizes. Introducing different bariatric diaper options to the market opened up the opportunity for more people to get the help they deserve.
The Tranquility Bariatric Brief holds up to 34 oz, or about 4.25 cups, of liquid. Fitting a 64" to 96" waist, this product utilizes a lot of the same features as the Tranquility SmartCore Briefs. This latex-free diaper includes the Tranquility Peach Mat core, Kufguards ®, refastenable tape tabs and more that make it a top product to contain fecal matter and absorb urine.
This 3XL brief is not the only bariatric diaper offered by Tranquility. There is also the Tranquility AIR-Plus™ Bariatric Disposable Briefs, which range in sizes 4XL-5XL, and additionally the Tranquility HI-Rise™ Bariatric Disposable Briefs which come in size 3XL.
The Tranquility AIR-Plus Bariatric briefs are designed with breathability in mind to ensure maximum absorbency and protection while still remaining comfortable to wear. The Tranquility HI-Rise Bariatric Briefs, with a full rise waist panel stretching higher than the normal fit of the regular 3XL bariatric diaper, was created to give the wearer a greater sense of security with its fit.
With three diverse and carefully manufactured bariatric diapers to choose from, you can be sure to find the best adult diaper for your health situation, no matter the size you need.
If you are interested in learning more about the two additional specialty bariatric underwear, click here for the Tranquility AIR-Plus Bariatric Briefs, or here for the Tranquility HI-Rise Bariatric Briefs.
Learn more about the Tranquility Bariatric Briefs here.
Style: Tape-tabbed Briefs
Sizes Available: XS-XL
Price Range: $16.11- $86.78
To round off our Briefs category, we have an ultra-absorbent option to look at when trying different overnight adult diapers – the Tranquility ATN (All-Through-the-Night) Briefs.
With a high-level absorbent capacity, these ATN briefs (depending on size) hold up to 27.5 oz of fluid - this equals about 1.5 cups.
Unlike the other two clothlike briefs on this list, ATNs are made with poly-backing material – also known as "plastic-backing." Preferers of the latex-free ATNs or other poly-backed diapers tend to like them better due to the feeling of security they give over clothlike diapers.
Equipped with the Tranquility patented Peach Mat core, Kufguards to keep in both urine and fecal incontinence, and a wetness indicator, this brief is among our most popular and reliable products.
Learn more about the Tranquility ATN (All-Through-the-Night) Briefs here.
In this next section we break down further details of the two pull-up diapers, also referred to as underwear, we have on our list.
From different brands, different fits and different features – these two options are a great starting point to figuring out what kinds of absorbent adult pull-up appeal the most to you or your loved one's personal health situation.
If any of the below pull-on style underwear seem like they may be the right fit, follow the links to their product pages for additional information on sizing, pricing and samples!
Style: Pull-on Underwear
Sizes Available: XS-2XL
Price Range: $24.96-$69.99
To kick off our Underwear section is our most popular absorbent underwear product – the Tranquility Premium OverNight Disposable Underwear (DAU).
This is the first adult diaper on our list that is a pull up style product as opposed to a tabbed-style product. Because it is closer to normal underwear, wearers of this disposable underwear appreciate the independence it gives them as pull ups allow for easy removal.
Absorbing up to 34 oz (or 4-4.25 cups), these DAUs come in sizes XS-XL. Snug leg openings keep urinary and bowel incontinence in while remaining comfortable and breathable. Providing premiere incontinence protection, this latex-free pull-up features the Tranquility Peach Mat core that strengthens odor control and keeps the skin dry and healthy, preventing bacterial growth that could lead to things like diaper rash, or just general discomfort.
Everyone deserves a good night sleep, uninterrupted by incontinence. These highly absorbent pull-ups are among the best you could try when looking to guard against urinary and fecal incontinence, while still getting through a restful night without having to open an eye.
Learn more about the Tranquility Premium OverNight Disposable Absorbent Underwear here.
Style: Pull-on Underwear
Sizes Available: M-XL
Price Range: $19.92-$109.99
The other high-quality and highly-recommended pull-on style underwear to make the list is the Abena Abri-Flex line of disposable pull-ups.
These adult diapers provide many of the modern features essential for effective incontinence tools. These dermatologically tested diapers include a wetness indicator, are latex-free, and protect against diaper rash with their soft, nonwoven material. Their unique top-dry system allows for speedy absorption, and a carefully crafted odor system keeps any unwanted scents away.
Coming in a variety of sizes, Abena is another great go-to brand for top-of-the-line disposable ultra-absorbent briefs or underwear!
Learn more about the Abena Abri-Flex Disposable Underwear here.
Finding the right adult diaper is not always about finding the most highly absorbent, long-lasting product on the market – sometimes it is about giving the wearer the extra protection they need in specific situations to continue activities that bring them joy and a sense of normalcy to their lives.
The final item on our list fits the bill in this regard, created specifically with bowel incontinence in mind.
Style: Pull-on Underwear
Sizes Available: S-2XL
Price Range: $23.01-$64.99
This final product on our list could have fallen into the previous category as it is also a pull-up style item, but it deserves a spotlight all of its own. That product is Swimmates.
These specialty disposable swimwear are made specifically for enabling wearers to still be active adults in the water without worrying about their bowel incontinence. Pulling up like normal underwear, these are to be worn under your bathing suit.
Much like some of the other adult diapers named in this list, this product is designed with a blue moisture-proof barrier as well as Kufguards to keep your swimming experience clean for your pool, your bathing suit and you!
These specialty pull-ups are also latex-free and have tear-away seams at the sides to make them easy to remove and dispose. Swimmates disposable swimwear are also designed to have minimal swelling and don't break and flake apart in the water.
It is important to note that Swimmates are not designed to contain urinary incontinence.
Everyone deserves to be able to participate in activities that keep them happy and healthy. Swimmates provide the kind of discretion and protection to keep those wearing them confident spending time in the water for themselves or with their families.
Learn more about Swimmates here.
These six products are just the start of some of the great items on the market you can use to combat and defend against bowel incontinence.
If you liked the sound of any of the products listed above, we recommend checking out their product pages and learning more about them!
We also suggest that you take a look at other products by the brands we mentioned. Tranquility, Abena and other brands featured on our website all have versatile incontinence supplies worth checking out.
Also, if there wasn't an item on this list that seemed exactly right, that is okay! Whether you didn't like the appearance of the items, you prefer reusable diapers instead of disposable ones, or there is a feature that isn't quite right – you can take bits and pieces of what you did like the sound of and find something different.
On the other hand, if you liked more than one item and weren't sure which to pick, we provide the opportunity to try select items before you buy them! Sampling products is a great way to easily discover what does and doesn't work for you.
To learn more about requesting samples, click here.
For more suggestions, check out our article on The Best Adult Diapers 2022 to get even more recommendations on some of the top-of-the-line products out there that could be the perfect fit for you or your loved one experiencing bowel incontinence.
About Comfort Plus
Since 1992, we have prided ourselves in providing the best adult diapers, briefs, disposable underwear and other incontinence supplies on the market.
Comfort Plus features products that have been proven to prevent embarrassing moments, skin breakdowns and other side effects associated with incontinence and other bladder issues. Learn more about Comfort Plus.
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