Our Guide to the Top Stress Incontinence Pads for Women

Stress incontinence is the most common type of incontinence. It is estimated that around 7 million women in the UK suffer from stress incontinence.

Shaped pads are the best option for stress incontinence pads. The pads come in different absorbencies to cater for light to heavy incontinence. With the incontinence market expanding, there are plenty of different options when choosing shaped pads. Here is our guide to the top pads for managing stress incontinence in women.

For Very Light Stress Incontinence/ “Dribbles”

For women who have the occasional dribble, the following incontinence pads are recommended:


Lights by TENA Liners                                       

  • Odour Neutraliser to keep you protected for up to 12 hours
  • Body shaped for close fit
  • 90ml absorbency
  • “Fast Dry Core” absorbs liquid quickly into centre core to keep you feeling dry.
  • Highly Discreet and comfortable
  • "Air Dry" Waterproof backing lets air circulate, improving comfort and reducing skin problems

Lights by TENA Liners are perfect for women who want the most discreet pad possible. With an absorbency level of 90ml, these pads are suitable for those who need a “just in case” product for small leaks or dribbles. Whilst these pads do have one of the lowest absorbencies in the TENA range, they are perfect for those wanting a small product for extra confidence.

TENA Lady Discreet Normal                            

  • Women’s shaped pads for light incontinence
  • 349ml absorbency
  • Similar size to a sanitary towel
  • Highly discreet pads
  • MicroProtex Technology
  • Triple Protection- Secure, Quick and Discreet

TENA Lady Discreet pads feature a silky soft textile-like surface that instantly whisks away moisture from your skin. MicroPROTEX™ technology in the pads weaves together a mix of ultra-absorbent materials to provide fast absorbency where needed. A 3D fit design moulds to the shape of your body, ensuring a close fit. With 349ml absorbency, these pads are suitable for women with very light leaks who want more absorbency than the smaller liners.

Cottons Comforts Super Plus

  • Unique 100% natural cotton top sheet for comfort
  • 400ml absorbency
  • Hypo-allergenic
  • Odour Control system
  • Body shaped for close fit
  • Individually wrapped for convenience and hygiene
  • Highly Discreet and comfortable

These pads are unique in that they are specially designed for those with sensitive skin. Cottons Comforts are designed with a 100% natural cotton top sheet. The pads are designed to feel soft against your skin and have been dermatologically tested to protect against irritation. These pads are perfect who prioritise comfort and skin health, or who don’t get along with too many perfumes and chemicals.

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For Light to Moderate Stress Incontinence


TENA Lady Super


  • Ideal for light incontinence
  • 903mls absorbency
  • Odour Control helps prevent unwanted odour
  • The Dry Fast Core locks away wetness for good
  • Extra gentle and dry Silky Soft Surface against the skin
  • TENA Lady is body-shaped for discretion and comfort
  • Soft textile breathable outer material helps maintain healthy skin


Tena Lady Super pads feature a gentle silky soft surface for maximum comfort. The pads feature double cores and provide extra width when there is a need for extra body coverage. With 905mls absorbency, the pads are perfect for women with moderate stress incontinence. A popular product, these are a classic option for women worldwide.

iD Light Maxi

  • Discreet and Secure
  • 800mls absorbency
  • Designed for light incontinence
  • Perfect Fix
  • Odour Control
  • Cotton feel
  • Latex Free
  • Discreet incontinence pads

iD Expert Light Maxi pads feature a camomile extract to help maintain skin integrity and prevent skin irritation. A soft textile back sheet provides maximum comfort and discretion. These pads feature elastics to ensure a close, anatomical adaptation. A cotton feel provides maximum comfort.

Tena Comfort Mini Super

  • Odour Neutraliser to keep you protected for up to 12 hours
  • Body shaped for close fit
  • 903ml
  • “Fast Dry Core” absorbs liquid quickly into centre core to keep you feeling dry
  • Highly Discreet and comfortable
  • "Air Dry"Waterproof backing lets air circulate, improving comfort and reducing skin problems
  • Slim and reliable

TENA Comfort Mini Super are a popular option for stress incontinence, mainly due to their advanced waterproof backing and maximum discretion. “Air dry” waterproof backing allows air to circulate and ensures your skin does not feel trapped or irritated. Highly discreet and comfortable, these pads are one of the most discreet options from TENA.

Managing Stress Incontinence


Pelvic Floor Muscle Exercises

Before you look for an extreme and expensive solution to tackle stress incontinence, trying simple Kegel exercises may be an easier place to start. Doctors often recommend trying this method before researching other options, as they are non-invasive. Kegel exercises work through strengthening your pelvic floor muscles and urinary sphincter. Although Kegel exercises have been proven to be effective, the likelihood of them working for you depends on how regularly you perform them. It is vital to be consistent and stick with them, even if you are not seeing results as quickly as expected.  If you are considering doing Kegel exercises on a regular basis, a Doctor or a physical therapist can help you to learn how to do them correctly. Strengthening of pelvic floor muscles by exercises results in a significant increase of pelvic floor muscle strength and reduction of stress incontinence symptoms. The exercises lead to an improvement or a complete cure of the condition in 80-85% of people who practice them.

You can find out how to practice kegel exercises here.


How Long Does it Take for Pelvic Floor Exercises to Work?

Some people notice improvement after only 4 to 6 weeks. However, it may take as long as 3 months to see any major change. If you don’t see any improvement after around 4 months, visit a Doctor or specialist to ensure you are doing them correctly. You can also ask about any suitable methods of treatment for you.


Practice Bladder Retraining                    

Bladder retraining is designed to help you change your urination habits. The treatment can be effective in lengthening the amount of time between bathroom trips, increasing the amount of urine you can hold and improving your urination control. The process involves building up the amount of urine you can hold in your bladder in a supported way to increase your bladder’s strength. The method is a safe and effective way to treat mild to moderate stress incontinence.


Electrical Stimulation

This method is specially recommended for people who are too weak or fragile to contract their pelvic floor muscles. Electrical stimulation involves sending a mild electric current to nerves in the lower back or the pelvic muscles that are involved in urination. Electrical stimulation of the bladder can also involve placing electrodes under your skin, either through your leg or lower back.  



If your stress incontinence has become severe and you are looking for a last-minute resort, surgery can be a highly effective and durable option. A Urologist or Doctor who specialises in incontinence treatment will recommend the ideal surgery method for your situation.

One common method of surgery for men and women is a sling procedure. It is estimated that 8 out of 10 women are cured after bladder sling procedures, making the surgery an effective solution for treating stress incontinence. Sling procedures for women involve making an incision in your lower abdomen and vagina so a sling can be placed around the neck of the bladder. This effectively supports it and prevents accidental urine leaks. Slings are created from muscle, ligament or tendon tissue. In some cases, the sling may also be composed of synthetic material such as plastic that is compatible with body tissues or of an absorbable polymer. During the procedure, a sling is placed around the urethra to lift it back into a normal position and exert pressure on the urethra to aid urine retention. The sling is then attached to the abdominal wall. A bladder procedure helps close your urethra and bladder neck, a part of the bladder that connects to the urethra. To allow the urinary tract to heal, a thin, flexible catheter is placed into the bladder through the urethra or belly wall to allow for urine to drain.

Originally posted 2019-10-29 16:33:01.

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