Bathtime is pretty important for people who are struggling with dementia. However, this process is not always easy as patients may not understand what they are required to do. Due to the fact that their cognitive function may be impaired, it is likely that your loved one may not understand why they need to bathe or even what the process entails. As a result, bath time may involve arguments, fights, and even tears. If you are loved one is in a memory care unit in Venice, FL, here are some of the ways in which team members are our community are able to help your loved one take a bath.
For someone who doesn’t have any memory loss problems, the idea that a bath may be scary might sound absurd. This is typically the reason untrained people get upset when people with memory loss problems refuse to take a bath. Giving them the freedom to refuse to take a bath is not an option either. This is because such an approach may further complicate their health problems. Not bathing could lead to skin problems, bacterial infections, and more. Our team members understand dementia patients and therefore tend to be firm but gentle when it comes to bath time.
Importance Of Routine
When it comes to bath time, it does help to ensure that you establish a routine that the person that you are helping to bathe understands. Human beings are creatures of habit and more so, we take comfort in the familiar. If you establish a routine, it is likely that the process f helping a memory care victim to bathe will become progressively easier. This is because they get to understand exactly what happens and can relate it to other instances when they have undergone bath time. This makes the bathing process less threatening and this might help to make them a lot more cooperative. When establishing a routine, you will need to find the best time to help them bathe and stick to this timing.
Arguments are typically based on logic and given the fact that people with memory loss problems have a problem with logic, it is very likely that this approach will not work. For this reason, avoid telling them that they need to bathe because they haven’t taken a shower in a long time or that they are stinking. Instead, use positive reinforcement to get them to cooperate. Our team members will often simply take your loved one’s hand and lead them to the shower. Positive reinforcement is ensuring that the bath is followed by something they love. For example, you could establish a routine where bath time is followed by a favorite snack or a favorite activity. This gives them something to look forward to when the shower is done.
Make The Process Comfortable
Our team members are able to get people with dementia to cooperate during bath time by making the process as comfortable as possible. This means ensuring that the bathroom is warm enough, all the required items are in place, and that the process will start as soon as the residents are ready. For this to be possible, it is important to plan ahead and ensure that you have everything that you need beforehand. This not only makes the process look less threatening but also means that minimal time is spent during the bathing process.