What are Bedpans and Urinals Used For?

What are Bedpans and Urinals Used For?

  • On August 2, 2018

Bedpans and urinals are rapidly becoming more popular for both patients and healthcare environments. Knowing their uses and benefits is vital for making the most out of them.

 What are Bedpans and Urinals Used For?

When an individual is bedridden or lacks mobility, a bed pan is useful in assisting them with toileting. For a lot of people, mobility is an issue in later years of following surgery or other procedures. Bed pans provide a dignified way to help them manage going to the toilet. This allows those in charge of care to assist in a helpful manner. The popularity of disposable bedpans and urinals has increased over the years due to the benefits for nursing staff, patients, hospital overheads and the environment.


Related: Are you experiencing incontinence at night? Read about managing incontinence at night for top tips.



Bed Pans                                               

Bed pans are suitable for both bladder and bowel incontinence. They are designed to allow users to go about their toileting in bed. Plastic bed pans feature lids to protect against odours. They can often be washed up 135 degrees. The grey paper pulp bed pans are disposable after use. You can use bedpans in a range of positions while you are in bed or laid on the sofa. The design of bed pans means they are easy to use, safely collecting liquid and faeces. People recovering from an operation or who are bed bound will benefit most from these. The contents of the bedpan should be emptied in the toilet. This can be difficult as some bedpans are quite heavy.




You store urinals in a bottle so it can be disposed of safely. Urinals are available for both genders with specific shapes designed to fit a female or male body. They are shaped like a bottle and the average urinal holds up to 1 litre of urine, around one and a half pints. Before buying, always check with the instructions to see what the urinal can hold. Many people, both mobile and immobile, like to keep a urinal close by at night.

Pulp Disposable Male Urinal                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     

Key Benefits of Bedpans and Urinals


Reduced cross-infection for patients and nurses. Bed pans and urinals provide you with a new disposable bedpan or bottle each time. Bacteria is not presented to a patient via a bedpan


  • They can be life-changing for chronically ill or bed-bound patients.


  • Infection cycle is broken, reducing the risk of hospital associated infections.


  • Waste is disposed hygienically.


  • Easy washing. If you are at home and the bedpan is only being used by you, it can be washed with hot soapy water, followed by an anti-bacterial spray. Toilet bowl cleaning products can be used but their effect on reducing odour is unclear.


  • They do not take up much space. Bedpans do not take up much storage space, although the actual size will vary depending on the design. If you use a washable bedpan, you will probably only need one pan.




The Difference Between a Urinal and a Bedpan

A bedpan is often used in a sitting or lying position, whilst a urinal can be used sitting or standing. Men generally prefer to use a bedpan for bowel movements and a urinal bottle for urination. Women, on the other hand, prefer an anatomically shaped female urinal bottle. Urinal bottles with a graduated scale are ideal for measuring and monitoring urine output. Bedpans tend to have larger liquid capacities than urinal bottles, so a bedpan would be more ideal if capacity is an important consideration.



Choosing a Bedpan or Urinal


It is useful to ask yourself the following questions when choosing a bedpan or urinal:


-What is your mobility?

-Where will it need to be used?

-How often will you be using it?

-Will the product be for short-term or long-term use?

-Will you be using the product unassisted?

-What is your size and weight?

-Will you be using the product independently?

-How often will you be moving it around?



Urinal bottles and pans are made mainly from either plastic, stainless steel or pulp-paper. Pulp paper is disposable, whereas plastic stainless-steel devices are re-usable. Stainless steel urinals can be cold to touch and use, heavy to handle and even noisy. Pulp products on the other hand will need specialist handling. They are therefore recommended to hospitals and nursing home environments.

 Shop our bed pans and urinals to find a product that is perfect for you.





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