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Once a week was the norm when I was growing up in the era where Saturday night was bathe night :)

As we age it can become more difficult to shower/bath. I have noticed for myself that taking a shower is like going to the gym for a work out. It can be very exhausting for many seniors.

And some seniors become claustrophobic when in a shower. That happened to my Mom. For a tub bath, there's the issue of trying to sit down in the tub, and the more problematic issue of trying to stand back up to leave the tub.

Then there is the fear of falling. If one is using a moisturizing liquid soap and/or hair conditioners, it will make the floor of the tub/shower feel like an ice rink, even with a tub mat inside. I almost slipped the other day.

Towel drying isn't easy. I find myself hopping around trying to get one foot and leg dry, can be a challenge. So easy to get one's feet tangled up in the towel :P

Don't get me started on blow drying one's hair.

If a person is a Depends wearer, baby wipes work quite well between showers. Recently I found a product called “Water Wipes” in the baby section, quite pleased with the wipes. In fact, they worked great on an elderly cat who could no longer wash "down there". The cat would come into the bathroom whenever she felt she needed a wipe :)
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Reply to freqflyer
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Personally, I could never live without a DAILY SHOWER. I have terrible pain in my joints and my arms/shoulders simply would NOT allow me to wash certain parts of my body. So I stand/sit in the shower and the running water does a pretty good job of keeping me clean and immaculate - without any pain whatsoever. It sickens me to know that people do NOT take daily showers. I want my private parts to feel and be clean and showers are the ONLY way I can accomplish that.
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Reply to Lockett2166
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My mom refuses a bed bath (in the process of remodeling the bathroom to a zero-clearance shower) now that it's winter. She was getting a bath once a week. I use those body wipes instead now, they are a lifesaver. I warm them in the microwave and wipe her down. She doesn't mind, it's less stressful.
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Reply to kbuser
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Very glad to hear they seem to be doing a good job in memory care.
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Reply to Invisible
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I help give my Alz. mother a shower once a week. Reasons: her scalp is on the dry side, not oily, so it doesn't attract and trap dirt, and her hair doesn't get oily and dirty. She also doesn't sweat and does not have body odor. So, it's sufficient to have a shower once a week. When the weather gets cold and rainy, she'll skip a week.

When she was living with me last year, she absolutely refused to take showers despite me trying everything to convince, coerce, trick, etc. She went without washing for 6 months. No joke. Luckily, she doesn't have body odor so it was tolerable. Now that she's living with her sister, her behavior improves. So now, a little incentive (going shopping - she loves it) will get her cooperation.
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Reply to polarbear
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There's no ideal number. There's no scientifically proven interval. People just say what they think. It's an opinion. There's no reason for it.

The daily showering which is the current fad in the west is more a product of clever marketing by soap companies than a good idea. Studies have shown that daily showering is bad for your skin, not good. It washes away the microbiome on the skin. People don't naturally smell. They smell because the microbiome is destroyed by bathing. All this showering is a very recent practice. For most of the 20th century most people in the west only bathed once a week.

Some light reading about the natural microbiome on the skin and the detriment of modern practices.

https://advances.sciencemag.org/content/1/3/e1500183

Here's one person's experience when he stopped showering.

https://www.theatlantic.com/health/archive/2016/06/i-stopped-showering-and-life-continued/486314/
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Reply to needtowashhair
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Nurse told us once or twice a week is fine.
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Reply to NeedHelpWithMom
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The LTC home where my dad is schedules two bath/shower days in a week, always with assistance.
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Reply to feelinglost8
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I would think once or twice a week should be OK, but more often if they are incontinent.
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Reply to Mysteryshopper
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3 times a week would be most ideal but if that is not possible then twice but at least once. My mother is in AL and on a schedule for 3 showers with assistance. She generally complies unless she is not feeling well with any given issue and then tends to refuse a shower. I am aware of this so once it starts to occur I tell her that she cannot continue to refuse showers as she starts to look awful. I discuss this with the aides and her and keep after it. It is tiresome indeed but I am not going to easily let her get by since she is in the condition she is in from years of neglect.
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Reply to Riverdale
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My LO is showered twice a week in her MC setting, and once a week is OK. Her skin is terribly dry and she’s always nice and clean and neat.
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Reply to AnnReid
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Judy79 Feb 11, 2020
At the MC location where my mom is, they take very good care of her.  She has been there 2 months so far.  They shower her 2 times a week.  Each time I see her, she smells very clean.
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