Coping and support

By Mayo Clinic Staff

If you have fecal incontinence

You may feel reluctant to leave your house out of fear you might not make it to a toilet in time. To overcome that fear, try these practical tips:

  • Use the toilet right before you go out.
  • If you expect you'll be incontinent, wear a pad or a disposable undergarment.
  • Carry cleanup supplies and a change of clothing with you.
  • Know where toilets are located before you need them so that you can get to them quickly.

Because fecal incontinence can be distressing, it's important to take steps to deal with it. Treatment can help improve your quality of life and raise your self-esteem.

If you're caring for someone who has fecal incontinence

Some tips to help the person cope:

  • Take him or her to the doctor to discuss treatment options
  • Take him or her to the toilet regularly
  • Make sure his or her clothing can be easily removed
  • Place a commode near the bed
  • Put washable cushions or slipcovers on furniture
  • Have him or her wear absorbent undergarments and use washable pads on the bed at night
Nov. 06, 2012