5 Tips for Helping the Elderly with Personal Hygiene
Everyday tasks can become more difficult as we age. For many seniors, good personal hygiene can be especially challenging due to a lack of mobility and sometimes a sheer lack of energy. Depression, isolation, dementia, a fear of falling, or medication side effects can all cause seniors to lose interest in or completely neglect their personal hygiene and grooming.
Health and hygiene go hand in hand. If you or an aging loved one is having difficulties maintaining a daily hygiene routine, here are some helpful tips.
1. Identify the issues. Get to the root of why your loved one has neglected their personal hygiene. Aging adults often develop poor hygiene because of mobility issues or because they are physically unable to perform their normal hygiene routines and are afraid to say something. Whatever the reason, it is important to identify the issues and discuss potential solutions to help them stay clean and healthy.
2. Establish a routine. Creating a daily hygiene routine can help your loved one get used to doing specific activities such as showering and brushing their hair and teeth. Avoid making these daily hygiene routines seem like chores or something which must be rushed. Make it part of their day:
Put on the music they like.
Keep the room, the water, and the towels warm.
Layout their clothes so they can slip into a comfortable outfit right away.
3. Ensure the bathroom is safe. The fear of falling or slipping can often be enough to prevent seniors from using a shower or bath altogether. Install the right equipment in the bathroom – such as handrails in the shower and near the toilet, install raised toilet seats, and add a bench in the shower.
4. Buy helpful hygiene aids. There are many devices that are designed to solve elderly hygiene issues by making it easier for them to take care of their own personal grooming. Shower chairs, no-rinse bathing wipes, and long-handled shower brushes, razors, and toenail clippers can all make taking care of personal hygiene safer and easier.
5. Consider hiring professional support. A professional caregiver can provide personal hygiene services for you. Your loved one may prefer this option if he or she has been avoiding having to ask you or another family member for help. They may feel more comfortable having a non-family member perform these tasks. Love and Faith Senior Home Care’s Personal Care Services help with many activities of daily living, from bathing and oral hygiene to walking and mobility…and everything in between.
Assisting aging loved ones with their personal hygiene is a labor of love, but it can also be tiring and stressful. Love and Faith Senior Home Care and our highly trained caregivers are here to provide the home care support you and your loved one need to feel safe, comforted, and cared for.