Millions of seniors rely on dedicated and compassionate family caregivers to assist them in daily tasks they can no longer do.
While many aging adults are grateful for the help and comply with just about everything, some seniors struggle with the transition and stubbornly resist the help. When it comes to helping their elderly loved one with bathing and showering, many family caregivers across the country are surprised to find their relative so resistant. So, what can family caregivers do when seniors never want to shower or bathe?
The first step toward a resolution is understanding what may be causing the negative feelings and stubborn opposition to bathing and showering.
Some common reasons why elderly adults may resist washing their hair:
Safety Concerns: With age, the body becomes less strong and steady, with poor balance, muscle weakness, and low stamina. Many elderly adults worry about slip and fall accidents, especially in the bathroom, and avoid situations that can lead to it. Family caregivers can boost safety and security by installing grab bars in the shower or by the tub, putting in a comfortable shower chair or tub chair, and supporting seniors during transitions in and out of tubs and showers.
Discomfort: Due to the loss of body mass, many seniors feel quite cold, especially when they are wet and unclothed. Showers and baths can be extremely uncomfortable and even painful for them. Family caregivers can help by putting in a space heater to keep temperatures warm, ensuring water temperatures feel good, moving quickly and efficiently to help with bathing, and having a warm robe and towels close by when finished.
Tired or Confused: While taking a bath or shower doesn’t take much for younger adults, it can be a tiring and uncomfortable task for seniors. If they are tired, irritable or experience cognitive decline and get confused, showering or bathing can seem like a huge challenge. Family caregivers should pick a time to shower or bathe when their elderly loved one is in a good mood, well-rested and prepared.
Embarrassed: In many cases, elderly adults simply can’t shower or bathe themselves, but they are too embarrassed to get undressed and assisted by a family member. Many families hire home care providers to help seniors with personal tasks like showering, bathing, dressing, and grooming. Home care providers are professional and compassionate, making the experience much less embarrassing than it might be with a family member. If embarrassment is preventing a senior from regular showering or bathing, family caregivers should consider hiring a home care provider.
To stay clean and healthy, aging adults must take a bath or shower occasionally. When seniors are stubborn about the process, it’s up to family caregivers to figure out the reason and then work hard to find a solution that makes their aging loved one happy.
If you or an aging loved-one are considering hiring Homecare in Surprise, AZ, please contact the caring staff at Blessings for Seniors Companion Care at (623) 594-0819