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When is Personal Care Too Personal?

By Rick Cohen, 8:00 am on

Personal hygiene can be a delicate subject for senior adults who need assistance as their abilities decline with tasks such as bathing and getting dressed. While daily hygiene is essential for maintaining a senior’s health and well-being, many senior adults may have a difficult time accepting the help of a close family member to tend to their personal care needs. If you are worried about overstepping the boundaries of privacy, consider the following suggestions which can help make your loved onefeel more comfortable with accepting help with personal care.

  1. Encourage Independence
    Senior adults should be encouraged to complete as much of their daily hygiene routine as they can manage independently. Assistive devices such as button hooks and bathing sponge extenders can be used to help overcome mobility problems that interfere with independent bathing and dressing. This way, your loved one is able to maintain some control of their hygiene routine while still being able to benefit from your assistance.
  2. Create a Private Setting
    When providing personal care to seniors, it is important to take measures to help preserve their dignity and alleviate anxiety. Before helping a senior adult undress and bathe, make sure that the room is private by closing doors and curtains. Senior adults who struggle with the idea of having a family member see them undressed may also benefit from having a professional caregiver who is responsible for helping with personal hygiene. Learn more about professional caregivers in Milwaukee who deliver personal care assistance with the utmost dignity and respect.
  3. Provide Choices Regarding Comfort
    Whenever possible, senior adults should be provided with choices that help ensure their comfort. As you help your loved one into a bath, ask them to choose the temperature of the water. Choosing their personal hygiene products, how they bathe, and who assists them with their routine can also help seniors to overcome anxiety regarding personal services. By offering options, you can be sure that your loved one’s hygiene needs are met without crossing over into personal territory that can interfere with your relationship.

Helping your loved one maintain as much of their regular routine as possible can go a long way in helping them remain confident and independent as they age. For more information about senior home care, visit our website at www.milwaukeehomecareassistance.com or contact a skilled and compassionate Care Manager directly at 414-964-8000.