Does your elderly loved one have an aversion to bathing? Especially if your older parent is coping with a physical or mental disability, the task of bathing can be seen as painful, embarrassing or even unnecessary. Exercise patience. That’s probably the first and most important step. Then, follow a few of the steps we’ll provide you in today’s blog.
Here are three tips for encouraging your elderly loved one to bathe more often:
1. Allow your elderly loved one to decide on the bathing method.
Does he/she prefer a bath or a shower? Sometimes, a hesitance to bathing is all about control. When older adults lose their independence due to physical ailments or other disabilities, it presents a frustrating situation. We can all understand that. So give your older adult the control. Have a conversation to determine how and even when he/she would like to bathe.
According to Esther Heerema on VeryWellHealth.com, “some people might not have a strong preference, but for many, providing this choice (either to the person or to their family member who may be able to tell you what they have normally preferred) can improve the outcome. A lot of water in a tub may cause fear for some, while the spraying of a shower can make others anxious.”
2. Ask family and friends to help.
One should never be ashamed of admitting that he/she needs help. We all do. And, in the case of getting older parent to bathe, getting help will most definitely be a plus. Do you have siblings you can contact for assistance? Is it necessary, perhaps, to seek professional help from home care providers? Consider your options and remember that you don’t always have to take on the responsibilities of senior care all by yourself.
“If your loved one continues to enjoy the company of family and friends, try getting them involved too,” recommends Tena Scallan on TheCaregiverSpace.org, “For example—if your parent is in no mood to shower or bathe, have a friend call inviting them to go out. Your parent may be so excited about spending time out of the house, they may just want to quickly shower or bathe to get ready to leave for a day out.”
3. Purchase shower equipment.
At Advantage Home Health Solutions, we know how important it is to have equipment that makes bathing a lot easier for older adults. This is why we proudly offer such bathroom modifications as super poles, grab bars (for the bathroom and the shower), bath chairs, bath lifts and transfer benches. In addition, we have roll-in showers, walk-in tubs and slide-in tubs available. All of our high-quality products are designed to make bathing a lot safer.
“Bathing or showering can become an exhausting experience for the elderly and getting in and out of the bathtub can be difficult,” advises Scallan, “To make it a comfortable and enjoyable experience, consider purchasing a shower chair or bath lift chair. Having a grab bar installed can instill a sense of security. And, of course, a rubber mat helps prevent accidental falls in the bathroom.”
For more information about the bathroom accessibility devices offered by Advantage Home Health Solutions, please don’t hesitate to give us a call at 403-460-5438. You may also email us by filling out the form on our Contact page!