Bathing is such a personal task and some elderly loved ones resist it for days at a time. Figuring out how to make bath time more appealing can turn that fact around for your loved one.
Triple Check the Bathroom for Safety
You’ve probably already gone over bathroom safety items, but it never hurts to do it over and over again. Look for places where you can install grab bars or put down non-slip rugs or mats. If the bathroom is too cold, look for ways to warm it up when it’s bath time. If your loved one feels unsafe or uncomfortable, bath time isn’t going to go well.
Tie Bath Time to a Reward
Having a reward tied to bathing can make it infinitely more appealing. Your loved one might enjoy an outing, for example, or a special meal or activity. Whatever your loved one finds motivating might just work in this situation. Having a reward system can also work for you if you incorporate activities that you enjoy doing with your loved one.
Keep a Chart or Calendar
Some elderly loved ones don’t keep track of time as well as they used to, so having a chart or a calendar devoted to bath time can help. You can leave it in an easy-to-spot location, such as on the bathroom wall, and then you and your loved one can keep track of bath days together.
Talk Your Loved One through the Situation
If bathing makes your elderly loved one nervous or afraid, try talking her through what’s happening. You can let her know at each stage exactly what you’re doing and what is coming next. This one step can help your loved one to relax and simply enjoy the experience of getting clean.
Get Outside Help
Some elderly loved ones are extremely modest. That can mean that your loved one isn’t comfortable at all with your help when it comes to bathing. If that’s the case, consider hiring elder care providers to help your loved one to bathe instead of trying to struggle through with her. If she’s more comfortable with that scenario, she’s more likely to bathe regularly.
Talk to your loved one often about how she feels about her bathing experience. Even after you solve the initial problems, others can crop up.
If you or an aging loved-one is considering in-home elder care in Germantown, PA, please contact the caring staff at Assisting Hands of Central Philadelphia. 215-274-0900.