Bowel incontinence, also known as feces incontinence, is a relatively common problem plaguing older adults, men and women in their Golden Years. In basic terms, bowel incontinence is the inability of a person to control bowel movements. A person with bowel incontinence is prone to accidental defecation. In other words, a person suffering from this condition oftentimes defecates away from the toilet in a manner that can result in the contamination of a bathroom as well as other rooms in a person’s home.

There are an array of different causes of bowel incontinence among elderly men and women. These causes include:

  • Inflammatory bowel disease
  • Chron’s disease
  • Ulcerative colitis
  • Irritable bowel syndrome
  • Surgery
  • Minimally invasive procedure
  • Infection
  • Diarrhea
  • Diabetes
  • Radiation treatment
  • Medicine
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Spinal cord injury
  • Stroke
  • Alzheimer’s disease
  • Other types of cognitive impairment

Effects of Elderly Bowel Incontinence in an Older Person’s Home

As mentioned, due to the nature of elderly bowel incontinence, a sufferer of the condition unfortunately ends up defecating in a manner that results in feces being away from the toilet. In some cases, misdirected feces are contained to the bathroom. However, in many cases, bowel incontinence results in human waste ending up in different parts of a home, including on furnishings and other items.

Not only are displaced feces highly unpleasant, this type of situation presents a very real health threat. Displaced feces of this nature must be appropriately cleaned up, the contaminated area fully sanitized.

An older person oftentimes has limitations as to what he or she can do when it comes to basic housekeeping tasks. Feces cleanup is far more challenging than tending to many other basic types of home cleaning jobs. As a consequence, an older person afflicted with bowel incontinence for one reason or another either avoids this type of cleanup or is unable to undertake it adequately.

Another reality associated with the aftermath of elderly bowel incontinence is that a festering situation in an older person’s home – like the residence of an older parent – is not discovered until an adult child ends up in that parent’s home. In many instances an adult child discovers an issue with feces in improper locations in a residence following a parent being hospitalized for one reason or another.

No matter how adult children learn of a bowel incontinence issue and its aftermath in a parent’s home, they are nearly always the people responsible for overseeing bowel incontinence feces cleanup. Although a responding adult child theoretically can undertake this type of feces cleanup on his or her own, that rarely is the recommended course. Indeed, the recommended course is nearly always for adult children facing the need for feces cleanup at a parent’s home to engage the services of a professional.

Remedying the Aftereffects of Elderly Bowel Incontinence in a Home: Steps of Feces Cleanup

A professional feces cleanup company utilizes a multifaceted approach to remediating the aftermath of a situation involving elderly bowel incontinence. These steps associated with elderly bowel incontinence feces cleanup are:

  • Removal of human feces. The first step associated with bowel incontinence cleanup is the removal of human feces. The waste is placed in a suitable biohazardous waste container. Human waste is considered a biohazard and must properly disposed of once removed from a residence of a person dealing with fecal incontinence.
  • Decontamination of contaminated surfaces and items. Once the feces themselves have been eliminated and properly disposed, any surface or object in a residence that was contaminated by human waste needs to be thoroughly sanitized. Typically, this involves the use of a medical-grade sanitization agent.
  • The presence of human feces in a residence, particularly if they have been festering for a period of time, results in the need for the deodorization of the residence. Even in situations in which errant feces may have been confined to a bathroom in a residence, the entire property may be inundated by a foul odor associated with the aftereffects of elderly bowel incontinence. This phase of comprehensive bowel incontinence feces cleanup can necessitate the use of a commercial grade deodorization agent.

Safety and Human Feces Cleanup

In addition to being highly unpleasant to cleanup, errant human feces also present a health risk to people who come into contact with them. This includes individuals called upon to undertake feces cleanup. Human waste can contain a host of different types of potentially harmful germs, including viruses and bacteria that have the potential to cause illness – even serious illness – in others. Safety issues associated with human feces cleanup represent another key reason why a biohazard cleanup company should be called upon to address this type of situation. A professional has the gear and supplies necessary to undertake human feces cleanup in a truly safe and thorough manner, using an approach that restores a home to full livability.


Emily Kil

Co-Owner of Eco Bear Biohazard Cleaning Company

Together with her husband, Emily Kil is co-owner of Eco Bear, a leading biohazard remediation company in Southern California. An experienced entrepreneur, Emily assisted in founding Eco Bear as a means of combining her business experience with her desire to provide assistance to people facing challenging circumstances. Emily regularly writes about her first-hand experiences providing services like biohazard cleanup, suicide cleanup, crime scene cleanup, unattended death cleanup, and other types of difficult remediations in homes and businesses.