4 Smart Ways To Assist An Older Adult With A Safe Shower
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When it comes to giving care to an older adult, many safety measures must be taken. Arguably, your strictest attention should be paid towards bath time. Needless to say, the bathroom is a location of the home where many slips and falls take place. If your elderly loved one experiences difficulty with balance or has any mobility issues, the bathroom can be an especially dangerous place.
1. Monitor the Water’s Temperature
Make it a point to not rely on your elderly loved one to control the water temperature. You don’t want scalding hot water to burn his/her skin. Naturally, an older person’s skin is a lot more sensitive to hot and cold than his/her younger counterparts. With that said, you also don’t want your aging parent to endure extreme cold. Make sure you get a comfortable warm temperature for the water before turning the shower on for the senior you care for.
“The skin of an elderly person is delicate, which means water over 120 degrees Fahrenheit can scald them,” says Florida’s 1st In Care, “If they like baths, to prevent burns check the water temperature first with a thermometer. If showering is more their preference, consider installing an anti-scalding device on the controls, or adjust the temperature on their hot water heater, so that they can more safely do either one.”
2. Create a Bathing Schedule
The summer heat may require more bathing. However, you don’t want to insist upon increased bathing if it makes your elderly loved one uncomfortable. It’s wise, however, to create a schedule that your care recipient is well aware of. That way, you ensure regular bathing without making your loved one feel either pressured or taken off guard.
“Some caregivers find that bathing the elderly every day is actually easier,” notes San Diego Compassionate Caregivers, “It becomes a part of their daily routine, making them less resistant. Once you decide on the bathing frequency, it’s time to create a solid bathing schedule. Place a wall calendar where the senior can see it easily. Mark off the days with an ‘X’ so they can track what day it is.”
3. Make Clear Pathways to the Shower
Sometimes, the dangers associated with bath time don’t even occur in the bathroom. If your elderly loved one battles with vision impairment and/or mobility issues, it’s imperative that you clear the path to the shower. Ensure that there are no obstacles in the way so that the risk of tripping and falling is minimized. You’ll also want to remove any items that are traditionally found on the floor, but could also be a tripping hazard. Throw rugs come to mind.
“Remove throw rugs and other objects at floor level that are potential trip hazards,” advises 1st In Care, “If your parent uses a walker and the bathroom space is too tight, find ways to eliminate obstacles.”
4. Do Away with the Traditional Shower Completely!
When Forward Day devised the Shower Bay portable shower, we had the safety of the elderly in mind. Shower Bay enables seniors to enter with their shower wheelchairs for safe and comfortable shower experiences. For more information about these revolutionary portable showers, please don’t hesitate to give us a call at 1-877-593-4461 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.