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Please note that as one ages, taking a shower is like going to the gym, very exhausting. I am experiencing that myself as I age. Hubby also experiencing the same thing. I found taking a bath much easier than showering as long as I can still be able to stand up to get out of the tub. Hair washing is easier for me when using the kitchen sink.
If the person has dementia, it is not uncommon to feel panic when the water from the showers hits them. Maybe try a shower head that has adjustable water setting, maybe something milder would work.
Now there is always the fear of falling in the shower, even if there is a tub long shower mat. If one is using soap that has moisturizers, it can make the shower mat feel slippy.
Make sure there are professionally installed grab bars in the shower/tub.
Once a week I shower her and that's enough for her, and I change her clothes every day. She wears cute fleece pajama pants with a long sleeved shirt and thick fuzzy socks with the rubber dots on the bottom with leg warmers.
The first thing I do is turn up the heat in the wintertime - or turn off the a/c in the summertime. I close the bathroom doors to keep the heat in. I always end up in a sweat but I don't want her to be cold because that's an additional misery for her.
I undress her while she's on the toilet and then help her step into the shower and sit on the shower chair.
Then all she has to do is sit there while I shampoo and wash her. I don't waste time and usually within a few minutes I'm finished and hand her a towel.
I help her dry off while still in the shower and then help her out to another chair where she sits and we finish the drying/dressing/hair rolling routine.
It takes about an hour or so and I try to be chirpy and positive with her the whole time.
I dislike the entire affair as much as she does.
The head and torso ore "vulnerable" areas so start with the feet first.
I was lucky, I have a zero entrance shower so I was able to use a shower wheelchair for him.
I would get the feet wet then hand the shower wand to my Husband and he would get his legs wet and often his chest.
The bathroom is noisy so once he was wet I would shut off the water so it would be a bit quieter, or I would put the shower wand on the floor so there was no splashing noise.
When talking to him I would use a quiet voice and lower the pitch a bit so the sound would not reverberate with all the tile.
In a regular shower make sure that he feels secure. Floors get slippery. shower shoes or good no slip strips on the floor, no mats or rugs.
Make sure there are SECURE grab bars.
If there are towel bars near the tub or shower replace them with properly installed grab bars.
If you have a glass shower door with a bar across it remove the door and replace it with a shower curtain on a tension rod. the bars on the glass doors are not strong enough to support weight if they were to be used to steady himself entering or exiting the shower.
If he takes any medication for anxiety or agitation try the shower an hour or so after he takes his medication. he may be more willing then
Sometimes it will take getting someone in a few times a week to do a shower.
If he qualifies for Hospice a CNA will come 2 times a week to shower and let me tell you they can work magic when it comes to getting resistant people to shower.
If at home & so no burly aides, try the "hold my hand" & "follow me" techniques on your own.
Taken from Teepa Snow's care videos - many available free online. Some excellent tips & tricks from a very experienced OT.