Ten caregiver tips for safe use of a bedpan at home
Position the bedpan on the bed near the patient’s hips with the open end facing the foot of the bed.
Help the patient to a sitting position in the middle of the bed not on the edge. Sitting is a good position for #1 and a better position for #2. The patient should bend knees slightly while still sitting up. Support the back and have the patient lean forward while you slide the bedpan and the absorbent pads into position. This may not be possible. Be aware of the patients position and safety at all times.
If sitting is impossible, help them roll onto one side. Position the absorbent padding first. Place the bedpan against the buttocks, and move it gently in place as you help roll the patient into position on the bedpan. This is going to be uncomfortable but they must be steady and safe.
With women be sure that the urine stream is going in the bedpan and not on the bed.
Stay in the room nearby. Never leave the bedpan in place for extended periods of time, bedsores and severe skin irritation can result. Constipation and/or urine retention are serious issues that should be reported to the patients doctor.
Be sure toilet paper or wipes are within reach for cleaning, but you may have to assist with wiping. A long reach wiping device, such as Bottom Buddy may be helpful. Toilet paper is always a challenge with weakness and limited dexterity. Pre moistened disposable wipes are more expensive but always better.
If in a sitting position, support the patient as you lift buttocks slightly, just enough to remove the bedpan.
If the bedpan was used with the patient on their side, help them gently roll away from the bedpan. Use one hand to keep the pan from spilling. Remove it to a safe area. Do not set it on the bed.
Use a warm wet washcloth, pre-moistened wipes or a Hygie disposable wash glove to clean the buttocks area. Dry the area thoroughly before putting clothes or gown back on, and be alert for any skin irritation, rashes, or sores. If you notice these or any other problems developing, consult the patients doctor. Remove and dispose of the under pad.
Emptying and cleaning the bedpan can be another serious challenge. It’s recommended to use the Hygie Bedpan Kit with disposable bags. You’ll be happy you did. See the video on the commedpro.com website.