Caring for bedridden loved ones can be challenging. We want to care for them with the least amount of discomfort caused by having to move them around. Thankfully, there are a variety of instruments available for use that can ease their difficulty and make attending to them much more manageable. Caring for a female loved one while she is bedridden requires more sensitivity and tenderness in handling. Here, I will teach you how to use a bedpan for a woman so that you can better care for your female loved one.
Types Of Bedpans And What To Consider When Choosing A Bedpan
A bedpan’s design fits under a person who is lying or sitting in bed. Bedpans were created to collect the urine or feces of a person who has minimal movement.
A variety of these bedpans are plastic or metal. Some are even made of graphite and are designed as such to suit different needs and requirements. Let’s go through each one:
- Hospital bedpans – These types of bedpans are stainless steel and highly durable plastic materials. It can be reused after thorough sanitation and designed to be easy to clean. A stainless steel bedpan can be cold on the skin so that it might be uncomfortable. It is also rigid and may not be useful if the woman you are caring for is experiencing pressure ulcers or what is commonly known as bedsore. If this is the case, you can switch to a polypropylene plastic bedpan because of the ergonomic design to make people with bedsores more at ease.
- Fracture bedpan – Designed someone who is almost completely immobile because of a cast or a surgery in the hip. It is made to be smaller than its standard counterpart, so that it is easier to use as well. The handle in the front makes it easier to manage during placement and removal.
- Bariatric bedpan – this bedpan becomes narrow towards one end, making it easier to slip underneath. Larger models are suitable for women, especially as a urinal. It is made of graphite so it can accommodate a heavyweight.
- Emesis Basin – although it is not a bedpan, it can be used as such, especially if you are caring for someone who has minimal movement. Limited mobility is because of severe pain and if she cannot raise to a level high enough to accommodate a regular bedpan.
Now that we understand the types of bedpan, it is easier for us to decide which one to get when we are preparing to care for bedridden women in need. Here are a few quick things to consider:
- Cause for limited movement – Is it injury, age, surgery? Knowing the leading cause of her limited mobility will help you decide the best bedpan for her comfort and ease of use.
- Cleanup – If cost is not a concern, there are a lot of disposable bedpans that will make cleanup easier for you. There are also bedpan liners that you can use for faster cleanup.
- Ergonomics – Bedpans which offer an ergonomic design that will cause less to no discomfort for her. Understand her needs before choosing a bedpan.
How To Use The Bedpan
- Prepare a small washbasin to hold warm water.
- Be ready with the following items:
- disposable gloves
- tissue or wet wipes
- cloths – wet and warm
- hand soap
- absorbent padding for use on the bed
Steps in Preparing the BedPan
- Always wash your hands before starting
- Be sure to wear your disposable gloves
- If the bedpan is steel, pour some warm water over it and tap dry, so it is not cold to the touch
- Add an absorbent padding over the bed
- Put some powder on the bedpan’s seat, so it slips easier into place and is easier to adjust
- You want her to be comfortable and warm so use a drape or sheet for her privacy
Operating the BedPan
- The bedpan’s open end must be facing the foot of the bed
- Now, position the bedpan beside her hips
- If and when possible, you may help her sit. This position will make it easier for her to eliminate. Support her back as she slowly bends her knees to position. During this time, you may add additional absorbent pads beneath her.
- If a sitting position is not possible, you may help her roll to the side. During this time, you can place the absorbent padding.
- After placing the absorbent padding, position the bedpan against her rears.
- Move gently along with her as she rolls back in place.
- Always Take time to ask her if she’s comfortable. Possibly in between movements.
- You can use a wick of toilet paper to guide her urine stream in the bedpan.
- Although some would require privacy, it is best not to leave your loved one alone with a bedpan. Prolonged use may cause discomfort and pain. You also want to be sure you are there for any unexpected motion that might lead to a fall.
- Situations that she cannot clean herself, you may assist with toilet wiping.
- In a sitting position, provide support so that upon her lifting herself, you can gently remove the bedpan and guide her back to place.
- If she positions on her side, support her motion as she rolls away from the bedpan. Be cautious when holding the pan to avoid spillage.
- Aftercare: If needed, you may use warm, wet washcloths to clean the buttocks area. After drying the area thoroughly, proceed with putting clothes back on. In the case of rashes and sores and other abnormalities occurring, be sure to contact a healthcare professional.
It requires extra care to nurse female loved ones who are bedridden. They deserve tenderness when caring for them, which is why it is best to be prepared. This includes how to use a bedpan for a woman. So that even though they are bedridden, it would be easy for you as well as for her. Find out more about bed pans.