At Carewell, we know that incontinence can be expensive. We work hard to provide you with very low prices, but we know that these products add up. When it comes to you or your loved one’s health, cost should never be a barrier.
That’s why we’re sharing the insider tips and tricks we’ve learned about spending less money on incontinence. Learn about why expensive products might not be the best choice for you, how buying more can actually save you money, and how you may qualify for a tax deduction.
In this article, we'll help you save money by teaching you about:
- Choosing the right absorbency - not the most absorbency
- Picking the right product
- Why you shouldn't double up on products
- The true value of choosing a "case" over a "pack"
- Deals, coupons, and special promotions to watch out for
- Tax deductions you may qualify for
- Your insurance and reimbursements
- How to find diaper banks
1. Choose the right absorbency - not the most absorbency
We hear the same thing almost every day - “I need the most absorbent products you have.” Here’s the thing - a lot of people actually don’t need our highest absorbency products. Briefs and protective underwear are much more absorbent today than they were twenty or even ten years ago.
We offer top-of-the-line, medical-grade incontinence products - not just the standard stuff you see on retail shelves. Many of our “moderate” products are more absorbent than the stuff you’ve tried from stores.
There’s nothing wrong with wearing a highly absorbent product if that makes you feel more comfortable, or brings you peace of mind. Do what’s right for you! However, as a rule of thumb, the more absorbent a product is, the more expensive it will be.
Let’s look at two products as an example.
These underwear are gender-specific, so they have a comfortable fit and design. They’re loaded with great features, including skin protection and a pretty lavender color. They aren’t an overnight pull-up, but they’re pretty absorbent, and a caregiver favorite. A case of 80 pairs of underwear is around $39.99 - that’s about $0.50 a pull-up.
These pull-ups are another caregiver favorite because they’re one of the most absorbent products we offer. To be clear, these are excellent products for anyone that needs the highest absorbency out there. However, higher absorbency means a higher price. These pull-ups are $73.99 for a case of 56. That’s around $1.32 each time you wear a pair of these protective underwear, more than double the price of the Prevail.
Note that the prices in the example are subject to change.
2. Pick the right product, not the cheapest
Remember when we said you may need to choose a lower absorbency if you want to save money? Unfortunately, we also run into the opposite problem. So many people choose a product just because it’s the cheapest, and end up changing their incontinence supplies eight or nine times throughout the day.
Instead of choosing a product that seems cheaper, you should go for the absorbency you actually need - it sounds strange, but you’ll save a lot of money this way.
Here’s an example:
- Let’s say you purchased a case of protective underwear for $30, and there are 50 pull-ups in a case. It’s not the nicest case we offer and it doesn’t have the fanciest features, but you figure you can just change the product more often. Then you realize you’re changing the product eight or nine times a day, so you don’t leak. At the end of just six days - less than a week - you’ve run out, and you need to order a new case. That means in one month, you will have spent $120 on protective underwear.
- You see a highly absorbent pull-up on our site. For a case of 50, it’s about $48, more than what you were paying. But you try it out and realize you’re only changing 3 times a day, instead of eight or nine. This case would last about 17 days - you would buy two in a month and still have some left over! That means in one month, you will have spent $96 on protective underwear - with some underwear to start you off next month!
This article is about cost, but it’s also important to consider all the other benefits of that higher-end product. Higher-end products are usually:
- More breathable, protecting your skin and keeping you cool
- Better at wicking moisture quickly, so you feel dry even right after a void
- Stretchier and softer, like regular underwear
3. Stop doubling up on products
If you’re doubling up on your pull-ups or briefs to prevent leaks, you’re probably wasting a lot of money. It’s just like the last problem - if you’re using two just-okay products when one really good product would do the trick, you’re actually spending more money in the long-term.
Not to mention, wearing two different incontinence products at the same time can be extremely damaging to the skin, and uncomfortable for the wearer. Incontinence products are designed with a waterproof barrier that keeps liquid trapped inside - meaning that not only is the second product essentially useless, you’re actually holding dangerous, alkaline urine against delicate skin.
4. If you’re using a lot, consider buying a case instead of multiple packs.
In general, the cases are going to save you a few cents per product compared to the packs.
To give you an example of how this breaks down, let's look at a specific product.
Right now, a pack of 28 costs $32.99, or $1.18 for each brief. On the other hand, a case of 56 costs $49.99, or $0.89 for each brief. That’s about a $0.30 difference just by choosing a larger quantity.
$0.30 may not seem like a lot of money, but what that means is every time you use one brief, you’re keeping an extra thirty cents in your pocket. Think about all the briefs you go through - that 30 cents will start to add up!
Not to mention, almost all of our cases are over the threshold for free shipping. If you had purchased just the pack, you also would have had to pay $4.95 for shipping, making your total $37.94 before taxes (for those interested in the math, that makes it $1.36 per brief, and an extra $0.47 per brief, compared to if you had chosen the case instead).
Of course, we would never recommend buying more products than you actually need. If a pack lasts you a long time, you should go for a pack and just pay the shipping. But if you’re worried about saving money, and you’ll end up using the products anyway, just stock up with cases!
Note that the prices in the example are subject to change.
5. Keep an eye out for deals, coupons, and special promotions
At Carewell, our goal is to get you the products you need at extremely competitive prices - we know how critical these products are, and cost should never be a barrier for you or your loved one’s comfort.
That’s why we offer brand new deals every month, so you can enjoy a little extra savings. On top of these monthly deals, we’ll email out special coupons and codes so you can enjoy even more savings.
Right now, you can enjoy an extra 15% off your first order of any Attends Premier product! Just use code PREMIER15 at checkout.
6. See if you qualify for a tax deduction
In some cases, your incontinence supplies may qualify for a tax deduction. According to the IRS, you can deduct “the part of your medical and dental expenses that is more than 7.5% of your adjusted gross income.”
Basically, this means that if you’ve spent more than 7.5% of your annual income on any kind of medical expense (payments for services, transportation to and from medical care, and premiums), you can deduct the excess cost. If you want to include incontinence supplies in this cost, you’ll have to have your doctor provide a document explaining that these supplies are medically necessary for your condition.
For more information on this deduction, visit this link: https://www.irs.gov/publications/p502.
Note that we are not tax professionals, so you’ll need to speak with a professional to determine if you qualify for a tax deduction. And save your receipts!
7. Check with your insurance about reimbursement
Some insurance plans may reimburse all or part of your cost for incontinence products. It doesn’t hurt to call and check! As this varies based on your insurance coverage, we recommend contacting your insurance provider directly. We’re happy to provide invoices that you can send to your insurance. If you have any questions about this, don’t hesitate to call us at (855) 855-1666 or reply to this email.
8. In a worst-case scenario, there’s no shame in reaching out to a diaper bank
If you’re struggling to get the products you need, there are some resources that can help. “Diaper banks” offer free products to families in need, and there’s usually one in each state.
If you’re planning to visit a diaper bank, keep in mind:
- It’s best to call ahead of time to make sure that you’re eligible and that they have the supplies you need
- Some diaper banks may have more strict eligibility requirements like:
- Food stamps recipients only
- Need a Letter of Assistance from the State
- A prescription showing you need the supplies
- Some diaper banks are only for baby diapers, so make sure you specify the kind of products you’re looking for while on the phone with them
To find a diaper bank near you visit: https://simonfoundation.org/resources/directory-us-diaper-banks/.