Wearable and Flexible Humidity Sensor Integrated to Disposable Diapers for Wetness Monitoring and Urinary Incontinence


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Tekçin M. , Sayar E. , Yalcin M. K. , Bahadir S. K.

ELECTRONICS, vol.11, no.7, 2022 (Journal Indexed in SCI) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 11 Issue: 7
  • Publication Date: 2022
  • Doi Number: 10.3390/electronics11071025
  • Title of Journal : ELECTRONICS
  • Keywords: inkjet printing, humidity sensor, conductive ink, wetness monitoring, diaper, wearable, urinary incontinence, RISK-FACTORS, PREVALENCE, KNOWLEDGE

Abstract

Disposable diapers are widely used by individuals with urinary incontinence. Diapers should be checked frequently for elderly, disabled, and hospital patients. Wet diapers that are not changed properly can cause health problems. The importance of electronic devices that provide warning in case of wetness is increasing in health monitoring. A disposable and wearable printed humidity sensor was designed and fabricated to detect wetness. The sensor was printed on polyamide-based taffeta label fabric by the inkjet printing method using specifically formulated PEDOT:PSS-based conductive polymer ink. The sensor sensitivity was tested under different relative humidity levels inside a controlled chamber. The resistance of the sensor decreased from 17.05 +/- 0.05 M Omega to 2.09 +/- 0.06 M Omega as the relative humidity increased from 35 to 100%, while the moisture value of the fabric increased from 4.8 to 23%. The response and recovery times were 42 s and 82 s. This sensor was integrated into the adult diaper to evaluate wetness. The sensor resistance change comparing to the dry state resistance (15.52 M Omega) was determined as 3.81 M Omega to 13.62 M Omega by dripping 0.1 mL to 100 mL salty water on the diaper. Due to its flexible structure and low-cost printability onto fabric, the wearable printed humidity sensor has the potential to be used as a disposable sensor for healthcare applications, particularly for urinary incontinence and capturing wetness in diapers.