The ONTEX invention relates to absorbent garments, such as disposable diapers or pants for babies or adults, which are configured to collect and contain fecal material and avoid leakage.
Inherent with the use of such absorbent articles, one or more wetness and/or exudate events will eventually occur necessitating that the absorbent article be changed. Particularly in care facilities with elderly with incontinence problems, knowing when to change the diaper/pant of a patient is of the utmost importance. Indeed, changing the diapers too early results in unnecessary cost and waste and changing too late results in further cleaning costs and time, and discomfort to the patient.
Absorbent articles possessing different types of detecting means are known and help to alert a user or caregiver to a change within the article (e.g. a soiling event). Such detecting means allow the user or caregiver to readily determine whether or not an absorbent article needs to be changed, without the need for close inspection or removal of the article.
Commonly known detecting means which can be incorporated into absorbent articles are chemical substances which alter their form or nature upon contact with liquid. For example, an indication that an absorbent article is soiled can arise from colour changes or the appearance or disappearance of an element on the absorbent article. Such detecting means are useful in certain situations, but less so in institutions such as child-care centres, care centres for the elderly or hospitals where the status of a large number of wearers must be monitored, often by a limited staff. Determining whether the absorbent article is soiled or not still requires the wearer to be disturbed, as the coloured element must still be visible to the caregiver. This often requires that the wearer be moved, and their clothes removed or adjusted.
There is further a desire for detections means that alternatively or in combination provide on-time alerts based on the risk of exudate leakage from the absorbent article, without the need of simultaneously monitoring the position that the subject is in during and/or after one or more repeated wetness/exudate events, which result in reduced operation costs since the interpretation of the received signal into the current diaper status only requires limited intelligence.
Ontex developed an absorbent article, components and process incorporating detecting means that provides the advantages of electrical detection, yet which is cost-effective, simple to manufacture and readily disposable.
More details are to be found inWO 2021/00127 4 A1 (Date of publication: January 7, 2021)
The reliable sensing of wetness along the final product is ensured whilst providing continued and reliable wetness detection and monitoring. This is beneficial since an insulating layer, being an inherent component of the final product, contributes to define specific zones where wetness can be selectively detected, enhancing efficiency.
This arrangement enables a secure electrical connection between the clip-on module and the connection tracks in enabled whilst ensuring also its protection from soiling by internal and/or external elements like.
The implementation of the inventive substrate into the final product is compatible with current production lines, which reduces operation costs compared to other solutions that require additional more complicated process steps and, furthermore, enables the use of the final product in a harmless manner for a wearer.