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My biggest issue is her closing her legs so tight I can barely clean her. So its' a struggle. She closes them so tight even sitting down. She refuses to shower as well. It's a constant fight.

From your profile, your mother's issues are "...alzheimer's / dementia, anxiety, arthritis, depression, incontinence, sleep disorder, and urinary tract infection."

and from a reply below: "I just go through a really hard time cleaning her up when she has accidents. Im afraid it'll upset her more if I bring someone else in to help me clean her."

Do you plan to ever get outside help in as your mother gets worse? I hope you will consider it, even if it upsets her.

I'm curious as to how you became your mother's fulltime caregiver. There is no family help. Is there family nearby? What have the past 8 months been like for you? Is there a plan for when your mother needs more assistance than you can give her? What are her finances? Can SHE afford caregivers (YOU should not pay for this) or a facility? Would she be Medicaid-eligible?
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Reply to CTTN55
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Using a can of inexpensive shaving cream helps sanitize the private areas instead of soap & water. I also bought a bidet for less than $100.00 that easily fit on my toilet. (The cold water doesn't bother me, but for more money, it could be heated.) Maybe starting some reassuring routine like always choose the same place to clean her, put on music, end with a massage, start a special routine that leads or ends with the task as the incorporated payoff (for you). Try not to act like it's an emergency. Be preemptive. Plan the shower with her like it's visit to the spa. Pick something that she likes (a manicure, special treat, hair do, TV program) and make it a reward. What would you do if she were 10 years old? I hate to suggest this but perhaps your mom was a victim of sex abuse and is defensive for that reason. If there is anyway to make it pleasurable, that might help-she's keying into the shamed, defenseless that she feels.
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Reply to Marnsand
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If she is sitting on the toilet this is a time when a Bidet Seat might come in very handy. It will gently clean her without direct contact with her.
There may be some very good reasons that your mom does not want to be touched. Some that you may not be aware of If she was abused by anyone at any point in her life she may not feel comfortable with a "touch" . If she had bad experiences with doctors or with childbirth she may not want to be touched.
Using a Sit-to-Stand might work well. Placing the harness on her and lifting her and removing her pull up or tab brief then lowering her to the toilet would be easy then as she is raised she might be easier to clean.
If she is in pull up type briefs or tab type it might be easier to change her in bed and have her lay on her side.
It might be easier to have a Shower Aide deal with the shower. Or if she is on Hospice let the CNA do the shower, bath or bed bath. It is amazing what a Shower Aide or CNA can get people to do.
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Reply to Grandma1954
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She is still pretty mobile she just smacks my hands away closes her legs tight. I have the large body wipes and waterless shampoo. I just go through a really hard time cleaning her up when she has accidents. Im afraid it'll upset her more if I bring someone else in to help me clean her.
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Reply to Smokey923
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Marnsand Jun 9, 2021
I know your hesitation in calling in the troops. Also accidents are spontaneous. I'm having trouble calling in help for my spouse who has had Parkinson's for 11 years. I remember my mom accepting help from aides much more easily than from me, however. There was guilt and embarrassment from mom for putting me through caring for her. I realize that a lot of anger transmits through touch and facial expressions to a family member. I know I'd feel bad if my kids lives were reduced to that!! I guess I better plan ahead. Will she talk to you and become partner in solving the problem. Make an agreement.
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It might be helpful if you can get someone to hold her up in a standing position, while you wipe her and clean her. I found that to be very helpful with my husband who was bedridden. He had an aide to come put him on the bedside commode every morning to poop, and she would hold him up, while I cleaned him up. And on the rare occasion that he pooped later in the day, my son would come, and again, stand him up , so I could clean him up.
Also they make extra large body wipes that you can use on your mother to bathe her with. They also have waterless shampoo/conditioner caps that you can wash her hair with. Both you can find on either Walmart.com or Amazon.
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Reply to funkygrandma59
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