Incontinence Pads for Beds: Layers Keep Things Dry

incontinence pads for beds

Preparation makes incontinence cleanup easier

If your older adult is incontinent, you probably spend a good amount of time cleaning up after accidents even if they wear adult diapers.

Plus, you’re forced to deal with unpleasant lingering odors.

Save time and money and prevent a smelly house by prepping the bed with expert layering tips and highly-rated protective products that really work.

After all, replacing a soiled mattress is expensive!


How to waterproof the bed

Multiple layers are the key! One waterproof mattress protector and a leak-proof pad can’t always do the job by themselves. 

Plus, once urine gets into the mattress or pillows, it’s difficult to get out and will smell. That’s why it’s best to prevent them from getting wet in the first place. 

If your mattress is already a little bit soiled, clean and deodorize it with a diluted vinegar spray or a urine neutralizing product like Odoban before wrapping it up.

You’ll need to wrap the mattress in multiple layers to keep it from getting soiled. Of course, some of the outer layers will get wet, but at least those will be easily washable.

Layers for mattress, in this order

  1. Start with a zippered waterproof cover on the mattress like this one.
  2. Then, put a fitted sheet style waterproof mattress cover like this one on top of the zippered cover.
  3. Optional: Put another fitted sheet style waterproof mattress on top of the first (repeat step 2).
  4. Next, put on a regular fitted sheet.
  5. Then, put one or two layers of a waterproof absorbent pad like this one on top of the fitted sheet. Your older adult will sleep on top of this pad.
  6. Blankets Option 1: Try a waterproof flat sheet like this one to protect blankets from getting wet. This sheet goes on top of your older adult and the blankets go on top of the sheet.
  7. Blankets Option 2: Instead of a thick comforter, try layers of thinner blankets and large, heavy towels. These will be easier to wash than a thick comforter and the goal is to fit all the soiled bedding and pads into one load of laundry.

Layers for pillows

  1. Put a waterproof cover on the pillow like this one
  2. Optional: Use two layers of waterproof pillow covers if your older adult is very likely to get their pillow wet.
  3. Last, put on a regular pillowcase


Bottom line

With incontinence, there will always be leaks and accidents.

But if you prepare your older adult’s bed with good protection products and this layering technique, you’ll make cleanup easier and protect the mattress.


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By DailyCaring Editorial Team
Image: Disability Ireland


This article wasn’t sponsored, but does contain affiliate links. We never link to products or services for the sole purpose of making a commission. Recommendations are based on our honest opinions. For more information, see How We Make Money.


  • Reply March 27, 2019

    Joan blankenship

    My mom has Medicare and medical I can’t get anyone to deliver any items to my house they say her insurance is out of area I love in Lancaster she needs a recycling wheel chair and a hospital bed she has been out of hospital since the 8 of the month she had a fight broken hip and a right broken arm she has dementia I need

  • Reply September 5, 2018

    Darin Mason

    This is very helpful for our elders to keep their dry and their bed clean.

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