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Odours and hygiene

Fresh urine does not usually smell bad. If it does, it may be infected and a urine sample should be tested by the doctor. Urine will begin to smell if it is left exposed to the air, so it is advisable to:

  • wear a pad that is fitted firmly to the skin to reduce the urine exposure to the air.
  • replace continence products according to manufactures instructionsregularly so they don’t leak onto clothes, furniture and bedding.
  • dispose of continence products into a container with a fitted lid, or place in a sealed bag and put into a rubbish bin.
  • wash wet bed linen and clothing regularly.
  • open the windows and doors to encourage air flow.
  • use room deodorants and odour neutralisers if necessary.

As a carer, wear disposable gloves to protect your hands when changing pads or washing the person’s buttocks or between their legs. Also wash your hands after handling soiled pads and garments, even if wearing gloves.

Dispose of used pads by wrapping in a plastic bag and placing in the garbage bin. If reuseable continence products are being used, rinse off the bowel motion in the toilet before soaking and washing.

Consider the easiest way to clean the floors and chairs. Plastic-backed towels can be used around the chairs and beds to protect carpet and rugs.