First, Let’s define the most popular form, Pull-ups...
When pull-ups benefit you: This version of Adult Diaper, a pull-up or pull-on seems to be the easiest to have people transition into. People switch from using pads to using a fully encompassing product, many times because they outgrow the pad. Pull-ups are much like regular underwear; some even look like regular undergarments. This is for a state of mind. It is easier if they do not look like regular baby diapers. The pull-ups do exactly as they are named - the pull-up like normal underwear with elastic at the leg and waist openings.
When a pull-up isn’t enough, tabbed benefits: The downside of the pull-ups is the lack of the ability to adjust the fit where needed. Most people who experience leakage in the pull-up style experience leakage because the leg openings are not snugging to the body. With a pull-up, there is no adjustment. You could snug them up by using additional tape but no guarantees how long it will last. If this is your problem, you need a diaper with tabs. It will let you adjust the legs. More on tabs in a moment.
The last pull-up drawback you should know is that to put a clean pull-up on, the incontinent person must undress from the waist down. This is just like putting on a pair of clean underwear. Again, the pull-on style requires you to undress from the waist down. Tabbed diapers, below, do not. They slip in around clothing or on the bed. Pull-ups do have tear-away side seams for removal, but those tear-away sides will require you to have room to undress and put a clean pull-up on. If pull-ups are not working for you, it’s time to learn about tabs.
Brief with Tabs
The diapers with tabs or “briefs” or “briefs with tabs” are the products that look like a normal baby diaper only larger. This can make it more difficult to talk a person into using them. This lack of people wanting to use the product seems to be the main drawback of the tabbed system.
Note a drawback of Briefs, the brief with tab style can be a little more difficult to use and put on if there is any trouble with the hands. The tabs are small, and you may need some dexterity to apply them as required.
A final benefit of the briefs with tabs is fit. Pull-ups cannot be adjusted, but with the brief-with-tabs, most people have the ability to adjust the fit as needed. People can pull snug the leg openings, so they are comfortable but leakproof. The same goes for pulling snug the waist opening. One last advantage is for those people that have braces or apparatus that need to have room. The tabbed version will allow you to work around your braces or equipment.
Some mix it up based on need.
You do not have to stay with one style of product. Maybe use the brief with tabs when you go out. They are easier to change when using public restrooms. Use the pull-on style when you are home or at night-time.
You’ll find the top brands really focus on their pull-ups. Most people buy pull-ups these days, as they are convenient. In fact, eight out of ten adult diapers that are sold on iDiaper.com are pull-ups. You’d be surprised how popular they are. The tabbed version seems to be mainly chosen when there are specific adjustments that need to be made around the waist and hip.
Also, bedridden people usually have caregivers using tabbed products. Almost all cloth adult diapers are tabbed. If you don’t have special requirements, most people try a pull-up first. When you are ordering your first pull-up, on this site or another, be sure and order a pack at first, not a full case. Order small, it’s much cheaper, before first trying them on. Then you can order a case later when you are sure they will fit; when you know you have the right product.