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Due to age and deteriorating physical and cognitive functions, an elderly may need assistance when it comes to performing personal hygiene activities. If this is the case for your loved one, we laid down some tips so that you can help them with their hygiene routines.
1. Show a genuine will to help.
Since bathing and grooming are personal, the first thing to do is to show your willingness and to offer genuine help to your elderly loved one. Do it in a way that they won’t feel embarrassed and instead, make them easily accept the fact that they indeed need help.
2. Help them develop and follow routines.
Help them make and stick to a schedule of hygiene activities such as bathing, brushing of teeth, and grooming. This way, their body will have a system to follow on a regular basis. It will not also be hard for them to do certain hygiene activities because they will be scheduled.
3. Ensure safety in performing hygiene routines.
Put safety measures when your elderly loved one is performing a hygiene activity like taking a bath. You can provide safety materials such as handrails, shower chairs or anti-slip covers in the tub. Many accidents like slips and falls occur during bathing time.
4. Choose the right hygiene products for them.
Make sure that the products that you get for your loved one are elderly-friendly. These often come as gentle soap, shampoo, toothpaste, and even toothbrushes. Remember to avoid products that cause itch and other discomforts.
5. Make sure that their “hidden areas” are covered by their bathing activity. Remind them or their care provider to cover sensitive areas such as under folds of skin, wrinkles, and other areas. If neglected, such areas can collect bacteria which cause skin infections.
6. Lastly, make sure that they are enjoying their hygiene routines by talking to them or adding fun things like music and story-telling.
Can you think of other tips to help an elderly with their hygiene routines?