Aging adults should have no fewer than two baths each week. Regular bathing can limit the likelihood of urinary tract infections and skin conditions. However, getting a senior loved one with Alzheimer’s into the tub can be extremely challenging. Vancouver, BC, Alzheimer’s care professionals offer several tips to make these efforts much easier.
Be Respectful, Gentle, and Firm
Bathing should be an expected and regular part of your loved one’s routine. Make every effort to be respectful and gentle, even as you remain firm. Let him or her see you getting ready for the process and offer words of encouragement as you prepare.
Honor Former Bathing Habits and Routines
Try to remain consistent with the bathing habits and routines your loved one maintained when he or she bathed independently. People who have spent years bathing before bed will be more responsive to completing this task at nighttime than they will to baths drawn first thing in the morning. If your loved one preferred showers before developing Alzheimer’s, invest in a shower chair rather than trying to coax him or her into the tub.
Collect Everything You Need Before Starting the Bath
Don’t make the mistake of turning the water on and getting your loved one into the tub before you’ve laid all the bathing materials out. Because seniors with Alzheimer’s can become confused, it is never safe to leave your loved one in the bath unattended. You may even want to keep a special shower caddy near the tub with all the hygiene products and other resources you need.
Offer Positive Reinforcement
Tell your loved one how thankful you are for his or her cooperation and support, and congratulate him or her on helping you complete this essential task. You can also offer to help your loved one engage in a favorite activity once the bath is complete.
After an Alzheimer’s diagnosis, families often find it challenging to help their elderly loved ones manage the condition. Turn to Home Care Assistance for the care your loved one needs and deserves. Our dedicated caregivers can provide mental and social stimulation and assist with daily tasks like bathing, grooming, and meal prep. To learn more about the at-home care Vancouver seniors count on, call one of our knowledgeable Case Managers at 778-279-3634 to schedule a complimentary in-home consultation.