How to Choose The Best Disposable Bed Pads for You – Boom Home Medical
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Best Disposable Bed Pads for Adult Incontinence

by Valerie Ulene 03 Apr 2024

For people suffering from incontinence, finding a great underpad to manage bladder leaks can be a real game changer. The right pad can provide comfort, dignity, and confidence and help solve issues related to odor, skin breakdown, and stress. Although there's a perfect pad for everyone, with hundreds of products on the market, it’s often difficult to choose between them.

How to Choose the Right Underpad

There are several key factors to consider in selecting the right underpad for yourself or a loved one. They are:


Not everyone needs an equally absorbent underpad. If you tend to leak only small amounts of urine, a lightly absorbent pad with an impermeable bottom layer is likely all you need. The same holds true for people with severe incontinence who wear adult diapers, since the pad is only needed to capture overflow. On the other hand, if you experience moderate bladder leaks and use underpads as your only line of defense, pads with a higher absorbency are probably the way to go.

Underpads market their absorbency in different ways. Some state that they hold up to a specific amount of urine (e.g. 16oz) while others provide general levels of absorbency like light, moderate, heavy, and super. Finding an underpad with the right level of absorbency sometimes requires a bit of trial and error.


If you're on a budget or using multiple underpads every day, price can be an important factor to consider. Fortunately, there are disposable underpads available for as little as about 20 cents per pad. Alternatively, if you don't mind the initial expense and extra laundry, reusable, washable pads can be purchased for under $10. Because washable pads are used again and again, the cost per use can drop to just a few pennies.


Pads come in various sizes – a small pad might run roughly 18 x 24 inches while a large pad can be up to 36 x 36 inches. In choosing a pad, you’ll want to pick one that’s a good fit for your body size. To ensure you're fully protected, you'll want a pad that extends beyond the side of your buttocks and thighs by at least several inches. 

Another factor to consider in selecting the right pad size is the location you’ll be using the pads. If you’re purchasing pads to put on your furniture during the daytime, you might prefer smaller pads that are more inconspicuous. However, if you’re buying them for nighttime use, larger pads may be better (after all, no one will see them under your bedding).

Look & Style

Most disposable underpads on the market look like they've come straight out of a hospital. White on top with a shiny, blue plastic underside, these pads are unattractive and look completely out of place in your home. Fortunately, there are now stylish, designer options available that come in a variety of colors and patterns.

Odor Control

For individuals dealing with incontinence, odor is often a big concern. Although some underpads advertise that they control odor, it’s unclear they do a better job at it than pads that don’t market themselves that way. Whether you opt for pads that are disposable or reusable, the best way to control odors is to change them frequently. Swapping moist pads out for dry ones quickly will also help protect against skin irritation.


Using underpads can generate a lot of waste quickly. The most eco-friendly approach is to use reusable pads that you can launder at home. That being said, for many people, doing the wash regularly isn’t practical (or desirable).

If disposable pads are the best option for you, look for certifications on the product’s packaging that show it has been responsibly manufactured. The Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certification logo, for example, tells you that the forests used to make the pads are managed to strict environmental standards.

Introducing Flourish Underpads

If you're looking for a perfect fusion of function and style, look no further than Boom Home Medical's Flourish Underpads. These 24x36 inch underpads are not only a premium choice for quality, they are also aesthetically beautiful.

Unlike typical underpads you might see at the hospital or doctor’s office, Flourish offers designs that blend in with–and even complement–your home décor.

Flourish Underpads are a testament to Boom Home Medical's commitment to dignified home health care. Their six-layer protection locks away a significant volume of fluid, safeguarding your furniture against bladder leaks. Say goodbye to the clinical feel of incontinence products; Flourish underpads are crafted to fit seamlessly into your home. Plus, their slip-resistant base keeps them firmly in place, minimizing the bunching or shifting that can occur with when you move. Maintaining dignity should never come at the expense of practicality or style!

How to Properly Use Underpads for Optimal Comfort and Skin Health

Keeping your skin healthy while managing incontinence can be challenging. According to the National Association for Continence, “Adult absorbent products are great at preventing leaks, but they also trap moisture close to the skin, which can become a problem if it’s not taken care of right away.” (1) Here are some tips to help protect your skin again irritation, rashes, and breakdown:

  • Frequently replace moist pads with dry ones, as recommended by the National Association for Continence.
  • Use soap and water or personal wipes to keep your skin clean, and consider barrier creams to provide additional protection.
  • Keep multiple reusable underpads available—ideally two to three—to ensure you're never without something dry to use.
  • Choose underpads like Flourish that can handle the volume of an average bladder void, which Continence NZ notes is between 8 and 14 ounces.

Key Takeaways

From absorbency to aesthetics, it’s clear that not all underpads are created equally. Finding the best option may take a bit of trial and error but, regardless of the pads you ultimately decide on, be sure to change them out regularly and to always have dry pads on hand to use as back up. Incontinence can be unpredictable but with the right products it doesn’t have to compromise your quality of life.

Shop Related Products

Flourish Underpads

Loona Portable Female Urinal

Washable Absorbent Underwear

Personal Wipes


Can I wash and reuse disposable underpads?

No, disposable underpads can’t be washed and reused. They are intended to be used once and thrown away. In fact, most disposable underpads will fall apart if you attempt to wash them!

Is Flourish absorbent enough for heavy incontinence at night?

For people with heavy incontinence, using a diaper overnight is generally the best option. Without a highly absorbent diaper, bed clothes tend to get saturated, uncomfortable, and cold. However, there’s still a role for incontinence pads. Many people who use diapers at night, particularly those with heavy incontinence, like to put a pad down to protect their bedding and bed from overflow.

How often should I change underpads?

Underpads should be changed at least daily, or more frequently if they become noticeably moist. This helps protect your skin from becoming irritated and breaking down and prevents the growth of bacteria which can lead to skin infections.

Are underpads suitable for travel?

Disposable underpads are perfect for travel as they are light, pre-folded, and easy to slip into your luggage. Reusable pads tend to be bulkier (not to mention difficult to clean when you’re away from home), so people who use them often switch to disposable pads when traveling.


1. National Association for Continence
2. Continence NZ

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