How to Use a Bedpan
If you are helping someone with a bedpan, try to be relaxed. Helping with a bedpan can be embarrassing for both of you. If you are calm and don’t seem embarrassed, the person may feel more comfortable. If the person you’re caring for is not able to leave their bed to go to the bathroom, they may need to use a bedpan. A bedpan is a container used to collect urine or feces. While using a bedpan may seem simple enough, it really is easy to improperly use one.
Caring for someone who can’t physically go to the bathroom can be challenging
If the person you’re caring for can’t walk to the toilet because of an injury, illness or after surgery, using a bedpan will help them maintain their dignity and independence
A bedpan will also help them stay clean and dry which will prevent skin issues that can happen if they’re using a brief instead
In this video, we’ll review how to use a bedpan so that you can develop your skills and make the process a little quicker, that way, you can both get through it a little easier.
Let’s try it!
You’ll need to grab a bedpan, some toilet paper or wet wipes.
You’ll also need a waterproof bed pad and any skincare products they’re using.
Don’t forget disposable gloves and hand sanitizer for good hygiene.
A bedpan is a portable container that allows someone to urinate and have a bowel movement without leaving their bed.
Bedpans come in a variety of shapes and sizes and can be made of metal or hard plastic.
The most common types are the standard bedpan, which is contoured to fit comfortably under the person you’re caring for…
Or, a fracture or slipper pan that is wedge-shaped. This type of bedpan may be easier to slide under someone, especially if they have broken bones, missing limbs, or paralysis
Let’s get to it
Start by washing our hands and putting on gloves
If the person you’re caring for can bend their knees and raise their hips, have them do that and place the waterproof pad on the bed and the bedpan under their bottom.
If not, help them roll onto their side and position the bed pad and bedpan under them like this. With one hand holding the bedpan, help them roll back onto it.
Getting the bedpan into position might take a few tries. Once it’s in position, prop them up with pillows or raise the head of the bed until they’re comfortable and upright.
Laying down to use the toilet is not what our bodies are used to, so sitting them up will make it a lot more comfortable to use.
If they can wipe themselves, leave the toilet paper within reach, they can put it in the bedpan when they’re finished.
Give them some privacy by leaving their room or the area they’re in, but stay close in case they need help.
Once they’re done, let’s help remove the bedpan
If they were able to wipe themselves and can lift their hips, have them do this so you can remove the bedpan and bed pad and apply any creams they need.
If they can’t lift their hips like this, help them roll onto their side while you hold the bedpan down and in place so it doesn’t spill.
Remove the bedpan carefully, it can stick and pull on sensitive skin. Set the pan aside and help them clean up. You can use toilet paper, wet wipes or warm damp cloth, whichever works best for you.
Damp skin can lead to rashes or bedsores, so ensure their skin is dried well, discard the bed pad and apply any creams they need.
Finish up by fixing their clothes and bed linens and encouraging the person you’re caring for to wash their hands with sanitizer to help prevent infection
To clean up, empty the bedpan contents into the toilet carefully.
If you used wet wipes, put those in the garbage, they shouldn’t be flushed down the toilet.
Rinse the bedpan thoroughly each time you empty it and clean regularly with soap and water.
Last, but not least wash your hands thoroughly after removing and throwing out your gloves.
Using a bedpan can be embarrassing for them and awkward for you to help, those feelings are normal, but with patience and practice, you will work through this together.
This probably isn’t a skill you thought you’d need to learn, but it is a valuable one
Be sure to visit our channel for more helpful tips to assist you in your caregiving journey.