Five Ways to Help Your Mom With Bathing and Hygiene
Since her stroke, your mom cannot do many personal care tasks independently. She needs someone to help her get showered and dressed. Brushing and flossing her teeth is too difficult. She cannot shave, apply moisturizer to her skin, or trim her nails.
It’s clear your mom needs help, more help than she’ll accept from you. Between your job, scheduling and managing your mom’s many therapy sessions, and your need for self-care, it’s stressful. How can you help your mom with bathing and hygiene without stressing her or yourself out? The answer is personal care at home.
Set Up a Soothing Setting
Sometimes, aromatherapy can be soothing. Have an essential oil diffuser in the bathroom. Scents like lavender, vanilla, and mint may help your mom relax while you wash her, trim her nails, and take care of her personal care needs.
Invest in a Terry Robe
During a shower, your mom may not enjoy being fully exposed. Purchase a terry robe that’s a little larger than she needs. Drop one shoulder to wash that area, pull the robe back up, and do the same on the other side.
The robe will get damp, but it can be dried outside in the sun. Wash it when you wash the towels.
If she resists using a robe, switch to towels. Have several towels that you can drape over her. Remove towels as needed to wash that area and then cover her back up.
Make the Most of Hand-Held Aids
A hand-held shower wand simplifies the bathing process as you direct water where it’s needed. A shower mitt or brush puts a little distance between your hand and your mom’s body, which may be less awkward for her.
When you’re brushing and flossing her teeth, floss picks may be easier to use. An electric toothbrush breaks up plaque better.
Consider offering a reward for getting through it. Your mom may not like having to rely on you or a caregiver for help, but you can make it more appealing by rewarding her with something she loves.
After she lets you bathe her and help her get dressed, sit down together for a cup of coffee and carrot cake muffin. She might appreciate a chai latte and slice of coffee cake.
Hire Personal Care Aides
It’s time to talk to a personal care at home agency. With a specialist’s help, you can arrange the personal care services your mom requires. You’ll have peace of mind that she’s in great hands, and she isn’t stressed that you’re seeing her at her most intimate moments.
Jot down a list of the care tasks she needs help with from the time she gets up to the moment she goes to bed. Find out if others in the family can help her with any of them, and if she’ll allow their help. From there, book personal care at home for her.