Hydration, nutrition and bowel/urinary incontinence

JohnHMich

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I find myself trying to balance getting the nutrition and water requirements satisfied, while dealing with my wife's bowel incontinence by myself. The Hoyer doesn't help because I can't get the brief off. I have a shower chair that mostly works to get her briefs off, but it is a struggle. Worse when they have been used. I finally went to using an inspection mirror to help with wiping because I'd start to lift her off the shower chair and find that we had missed a spot. When she was in the hospital they just used chucks at night and moved her to a bedside commode if she was able to request toileting. Not a solution for being outside the house. Possibly a solution for when she is in her powerchair at home? Right now, if I have to change her alone, I transfer her from the wheelchair to the shower chair, clean her up, transfer her from the shower chair to the bed to get her dressed and then back to the wheelchair. It's doable once a day, but hard when it gets to be 4x a day.

What's the right tradeoff?
 

lgelb

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It is less dignified but I would consider staying in the sling for toileting and cleanup after, to take less time overall. Nutrition and hydration do not trade off as well.
 
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affected

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I'm not sure how you have all that equipment when you are not at home, hoists and shower chairs etc
Would an adult diaper be worth trying when not at home?

Definitely not good to consider trade offs by reducing nutrition or hydration.
 

Nuts

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If you switch from briefs to having her go commando with a chuck on the chair seat, tolieting will be much easier. She can either switch to wearing skirts or you can adapt a pair of pants. The simplest way is to open the back seam of sweatpants from the crotch to back waistband. If you search on adaptive pants you'll see some more elegant options. Absolutely have her remain in the sling (split leg), that way you can clean her up after you lift her up off the toilet. With this set up you can either transfer her to the toilet (still in the sling) or lift her from the chair or bed and place a bucket under her. It'll be an adjustment for her, but I can't imagine doing it any other way. Absolutely don't limit nutrition or water or you will have a host of other problems that you don't want to deal with.

I adapted sweat pants for my husband and no one ever knew that he was sitting on his bare butt (well, except the OT who reached under him to check the inflation on the seat cushion--boy did she get a surprise). If your wife is too modest for that, a light lap blanket will provide more privacy.
 

JohnHMich

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After some struggle, three bits of good news. First, we got her started with a Purewick catheter. That is working out very well. That means her hydration level can be in the recommended range. And it means fewer trips to the toilet. Basically once in the morning for a BM. Then on the wick until bedtime. I got a purewick with a battery, so we were able to do dinner and a concert before turning into a pumpkin last night.
 

affected

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That is such great news! I didn't even know about these, so it is great to know you could go out and enjoy an evening this way.
 
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