When buying diapers look on the website and check out the size range of the products. As far as disposable briefs are concerned they tell you which hip and waist size the briefs will fit. For youth sizes they sometimes also give the weight range the products will fit.
With cloth diapers they give the waist size the diapers will fit as well as both the length and width of the diapers. A customer service rep from Angel Fluff Diaper company told me that in order to get the appropriate size you should measure the waist from the belt in front to the belt in the back and through the crotch. In addition you should also know your thigh measurements. The simplest thing to do is to familiarize yourself with what measurements are required from the company you're planning to buy from then when you're ready to purchase the item, ask them if there's any other information they need. This applies to disposable briefs,plastic pants,and cloth diapers.
As discussed before there is tremendous stigma associated with the use of diapers. It's a shame that most people only use garments such as pull-ups/pull-ons and 'Goodnites' to deal with their bed-wetting and won't even consider trying other options. Options that in some cases can offer better protection thereby making the child feel more comfortable and secure. I've talked with customer service reps from The Bedwetting Store,Continence Connection,and HDIS and other places that sell incontinence products and the ones I spoke with felt that the disposable briefs tend to be more absorbent and provide better protection than garments such as pull-ups and 'Goodnites' although some people I've spoken with said that both briefs and pull-ups are equally effective at protecting the user,it's just a question of personal preference.
That being said,the consensus from both customer service reps that sell both types of garments and people from incontinence forums who experience bed-wetting seems to be that disposable briefs tend to offer better protection for this particular type of incontinence. As far as obtaining opinions about bed-wetting products from customer service reps, although there is the potential for bias in this area and people should exercise a certain degree of caution when evaluating the information presented to them(as is the case in any other transaction), the companies that I did gather this information from have been around for a number of years and are highly regarded by many people. In addition it would not be in the best interest of these companies to recommend products that didn't work. I suspect that in general,the people who operate mail order incontinence companies tend to have a high level of integrity(of course as with everything else in life there are exceptions to the rule) and want to instill these values in the staff who are responsible for providing information about what the best type of products to buy based on the customer's needs. Like any other sales person they have to responsive to the needs of their customers otherwise they'll soon be out of a job and if the company gets a reputation for recommending products that don't meet the consumer's needs they'll soon be out of business.
At this point I'd like to talk about some of the reasons that the disposable tape tab briefs tend to be more effective than products such as 'Goodnites' and pull-ups for heavy incontinence such as bed-wetting. One of the reasons for this is that there tends to be more padding in the briefs. One customer service representative told me that many briefs have a highly absorbent polymer and high capacity padding which extends to the wings and side panels. Another customer service representative told me that the disposable tape on briefs tend to have more padding in the front and back and the pull-on garments tend to have less padding in the waist area. A third customer service rep told me that the briefs have padding all around whereas garments such as pull-ups and 'Goodnites' don't. In general it seems that products such as 'Goodnites' tend to not have padding on the sides which means they'll most likely provide less effective protection particularly with those people who tend to sleep on their sides. In fact one person on an incontinence forum mentioned that he didn't find the pull-up style disposable diapers effective for bed-wetting. He said that they didn't have enough protection on the sides and he frequently experienced leaks.
I was also told that with a tape on brief there's more flexibility in getting a snug fit because you have the ability to adjust the tapes on the brief thereby making them fit more snug .This in turn should help prevent leaks. That's the reason disposable briefs have refastenable tapes, in case you need to make any adjustments to the brief to make it fit better. Finally,the owner of XP Medical in an email to me had the following to say regarding disposable tape on briefs versus pull-ups: 'Tape tab briefs are almost always more absorbent than pull-ups,and therefore better for heavy incontinence. As you mentioned the reason for this is twofold: 1.)There is more padding because there is not so much elastic using up space in front and back. 2.) The tapes allow the product to be fixed more firmly so that they will stay in place even when wet. Pullups will fall down if too heavy.'
He went on to say that some people may find it difficult to fasten the tapes on a tape on diaper such as a person who suffers from arthritis or Parkinson's disease. In a situation such as this it would be better to use garments such as pull-ups. That being said if your bed-wetter does not have any cognitive or physical impairments that would prevent or make it difficult for him or her to fasten the tapes on a tape tab style disposable brief,it would be advisable to have the child or teenager wear disposable tape tab briefs instead of pull-ups. As far as choosing a diaper with a cloth like outer cover versus one with a plastic outer cover he had this to say: 'The Air-Plus diapers(a diaper with a cloth like outer cover made by Abena) have the advantage of being quieter and allowing some airflow through the material. On the other hand, many customers do not like them because the cloth like material 'grabs' on clothing and can allow odors to seep through.' Although this happened with a particular brand of diaper, this problem can occur with other brands of diapers. One person mentioned that he found that the diapers with the cloth like outer cover tended to stick to the sheets when he moved around in bed and since he moved around a lot at night he preferred the disposable diapers with a plastic outer cover.
To get back to the advantages of disposable tape on briefs versus pull-ups,the author of the Diaper Primer in the section on disposable diapers has this to say regarding pull-ons: 'As a general observation,we would say that pull-ons are not really 'you know whats'(i.e. diapers) and cannot afford the same protection afforded by the 'ah-hem.' If they are going to get used and wet,they are going to become heavy,and the elastic waist will not be able to keep them up or comfortable. This writer's opinion is that they are very useful and valuable for those who do not plan to get them wet and are wearing protection primarily for peace of mind or for that 'just in case situation' and 'The capacity of pull-ons is less than a full diaper brief.' There are several brands of disposable briefs that are highly regarded by many people especially for heavy incontinence such as bed-wetting. These include Molicare Super Plus Fitted Briefs, Abriform X-Plus briefs made by Abena ,the Unique Brief(which is made by First Wellness and is also known as the Wellness brief), Eurobrief made by Mediprime,Secure X-Plus briefs, Tranquility All-Through-The Night disposable briefs,Tenas,and Dry247 briefs. Abena Abriform also has a model called the 'Super' brief which is not as absorbent as the X-Plus model but is available in an extra small size for those youngsters who might not be able to fit into the X-Plus briefs.These are just some of the brands of disposable briefs available.
Other brands of disposable briefs include the Wings brand by Kendall, Prevail by First Quality, Whitestone(which make different models of disposable briefs including 'Ultrashields')the Dignity brand made by Humanicare,At Ease,Attends,Protection Plus by Medline,Dry Comfort,and Nightingale.As far as the Dignity brand is concerned they make a nighttime version of their briefs which is called 'Dignity PM' They also make a brief called 'Dignity Plus'. On the Duraline Medical Products website in the education part of their website they have a section called 'common types of incontinence and appropriate products.' For nocturnal enuresis(which as mentioned earlier is the clinical term for bed-wetting) they had this to say regarding the best type of product to wear: 'Heavy incontinence such as urge,nocturnal enuresis,or reflex,usually requires a wrap-around brief, either disposable or cloth, or a heavy pant and pad system.' As far as pant and pad systems are concerned, although these were mentioned by Duraline as being appropriate for heavy incontinence,other sources that sell incontinence products(as well as the Diaper Primer) indicate that these are designed to handle light to moderate incontinence and are not recommended for bed-wetting.In the incontinence guide on the Woodbury Products website it listed four different levels of incontinence-very light,light,moderate,and heavy. It also listed the types of garments most suited to deal with these different levels. Disposable tape tab briefs were the ones mentioned to be most effective in dealing with heavy incontinence(incontinence where the person loses large volumes of urine.) To quote the website-'Ultra comfortable and discreet,disposable briefs offer superior protection and confidence. Easily fasten with tape tabs.' Since bed-wetting is a form of heavy incontinence it would be best to use a product designed specifically for this type of incontinence and disposable tape tab briefs appear to be the best choice to manage heavy incontinence.
Right now I'd like to get back to the topic of disposable tape tab briefs with plastic outer covers and disposable tape tab briefs with cloth like outer covers. As far as buying disposable tape on briefs with a plastic outer layer or a cloth layer is concerned, this is a personal preference. There are people who prefer the diapers with a cloth like outer cover and there are those who prefer the diapers with a plastic outer layer. Some of the complaints about diapers with a cloth like outer covering that were mentioned in the Diaper Primer are abrasion between the legs and a feeling of clamminess. Other people prefer the cloth like outer cover because they feel it's more comfortable. There are a number of reasons why most manufacturers seem to be making diapers with a cloth like outer cover.
One,is that they could be more cost effective for the manufacturers to produce. Two,they are supposed to be more discreet to wear-some of the diapers with the plastic outer cover make a loud crinkling sound whenever the user moves around. Third,the cloth like outer cover is supposed to make the diapers more underwear like in appearance which makes them more acceptable to wear for many people. Fourth,these diapers are supposed to be more breathable which means they're supposed to be healthier for the individual's skin. Finally,all of these reasons might be involved in the decision to make these kinds of diapers. That being said,there are companies that make both styles of diapers and there are companies that only make diapers with a plastic outer cover. I personally think that the reason most diapers for older children,adolescents,teenagers,and adults are made with a cloth like outer cover is that these diapers look more like underwear than the ones made with a plastic outer layer. As far as the rustling sound is concerned I understand that there are ways to get around this problem and if the person is only wearing diapers at night this shouldn't be a concern. Furthermore,even certain brands of disposable diapers with a cloth like outer cover can make some degree of noise. It should be pointed out that products and brands evolve over time-for instance a brand that might have had a bad reputation with members of the incontinence community years ago may improve and vice-versa.
Another point to keep in mind with disposable briefs is that some people buy disposable liners to increase the absorbency of the brief. Disposable liners are known as booster pads or 'diaper doublers' and can be purchased from mail order companies such as HDIS ,National Incontinence,Continence Connection among other places that specialize in incontinence products. As I talk about later in this article,many companies that sell incontinence products have sample packs of disposable briefs and this will help you make the decision about whether the disposable tape on briefs with the cloth like outer cover or the disposable tape tab briefs with the plastic outer cover works best for you.