Housework is time-consuming enough without the added stress of dealing with strong and lingering odors related to incontinence. Whether it’s a pet, a loved one, or your own struggles with urine leaks, eliminating those noxious odors is critical to well-being.
And drinking less fluid to reduce how often you “go” isn’t the answer. Dehydration irritates your bladder and concentrates urine, making it even more foul-smelling. Concentrated urine also accompanies bladder infections which are a common incontinence side effect.
For a fresher, cleaner home, try these odor-fighting tips.
Practice Thorough Personal Hygiene
Be sure to clean “down there” thoroughly. You can use warm, soapy water to cleanse the skin surrounding private areas. Since many soaps can be irritating to sensitive perineal skin, you may want to choose products made for cleansing this delicate area, such as personal care wipes or perineal wash.
TYE Medical carries both McKesson Personal Wipes with aloe and vitamin E and McKesson Rinse-Free Perineal Wash. Which you choose depends on your personal preference and convenience needs. Different circumstances may call for different products. Maintaining good personal hygiene means changing as soon as necessary and ensuring the area is clean and dry, not only to prevent odors, but also to prevent dry, irritated, and infected skin.
Reach for Paper Towels First
It’s critical to absorb any excess liquid. Instead of reaching for a reusable rag, towel, or sponge, use paper towels as your first line of defense. This is when most of the urine (and odor) is disposed of, which means you’ll want to use something you can throw away. Once finished, place the soiled rags in a plastic bag and drop them in your outdoor trash can. This will keep those lingering odors from filling up your home.
Once the initial mess is addressed, you can clean the area again with spray cleaner or sanitizing wipes. Then dispose of these items in a sealed bag also.
Use a Black Light
A small, inexpensive black light is a useful tool for pinpointing hard-to-find urine stains. Once urine dries, it can be difficult to see, especially on dark colors. But just because you don’t see it doesn’t mean odors aren’t released.
Once you locate a stain, you can outline it in chalk to make it easier to find for cleaning. This is extremely helpful for finding stains on furniture and carpet.
Use a Wet Vac
Don’t use hot water when cleaning urine. The heat will both set the stain and bond the odor to any man-made fibers involved. Instead, the most efficient method is to use a wet vac with lukewarm water. This allows for a deeper clean than hand scrubbing alone, and the wet vac pulls the urine and odor into the vacuum rather than letting it remain to smell up your home. You can purchase a lightweight, compact model for convenient storage.
Use a Cleaner with Enzymes
If you find a stubborn stain that’s also an odor source, you can neutralize it with an enzymatic cleaner. All urine contains uric acid crystals, and the enzymes in these cleaners bind with the uric acid to destroy it. A quality enzymatic cleaner not only contains the right balance of enzymes but also includes other ingredients to support the destruction of odor-causing bacteria.
Make Your Own Cleaning Solution
If you’re in a bind or don’t want to spring for the enzyme cleaner, you can mix your own solution using:
- 3 TBS baking soda
- 8 oz hydrogen peroxide
- 3 drops of dish detergent
This can be powerful enough to neutralize most urine odors. After testing a small area first, spray the solution on the soiled area and let it sit for 10 to 20 minutes. Then scrub the area and pat dry.
You may also want to make a homemade essential oils spray:
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp vinegar
- ½ tsp orange essential oil
- 5 oz hydrogen peroxide
Spray the mixture on the stained area and let it completely dry. You may need to repeat this process more than once to remove the odor.
Add Borax to Your Washer
If you need to remove stubborn odors from bedding or clothing, try mixing equal parts “washing soda” (not the same as baking soda) and Borax. It’s safe to use these in any washing machine, and you can find both in most grocery stores. It might be helpful to add some vinegar also. This can be a powerful odor-eliminating combination.
Use Bed Pads
If you’re not already using bed pads on mattresses or furniture, it’s a good time to start. Slip a bed pad under sheets or on a chair to absorb any urine leaks or accidents. It’s like a backup plan when all else fails. This will protect your absorbent mattresses and furniture, keeping urine at bay and defending against odors.
You can check out TYE Medical’s McKesson brand bed pads with a super absorbent polymer core to absorb and lock away maximum liquid.
Eliminating Urine Odors
You can eliminate urine odors from your home with the proper essentials and effective tips. Try a combination of approaches to see what works best for you.
TYE Medical offers a variety of incontinence products through their online store. Shop for premium incontinence underwear, incontinence pads, and a variety of personal hygiene products. All orders are shipped discreetly for free.