Follow
Share

She cares for herself, bathing and dressing. I help her choose her clothes because she can't see. I don't want to make her feel like she can't take care of herself, although the cleanliness is a problem on several levels. I would appreciate any suggestions for ways of helping her.

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.
Find Care & Housing
After my hip replacement surgeries I had the problem of not being able to really reach "back there" for many weeks. The squirt bottle with warm soapy water helped for step one, the the "adult wash/wipes" helped for step two, having a dedicated trash basket easy to drop paper into close to the toilet helped for step three.A bidet is a great idea but too costly for some of us. It is hard to give over personal cleansing tasks to our kids but if done with respect it will help them to remember we changed their diapers long ago.....
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Please don't flush those "flushable wipes"! My mother's plumbing backed up and the toilet overflowed and flooded the house to the tune of $20,000. The only good thing was that we were able to move her into a very nice retirement home apartment because the house repairs took so long. But it drained her bank account, and it would be nice to have that money now for future care.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

At the beauty supply store, I found plastic squeeze bottles with longish spouts that can be filled with warm water to squirt on the perineal area. (They look sort of like the condiment dispensers you might find in a diner, only clear, not red/yellow.) Mom may not be able to manage using one herself, but it sure makes cleanup for the caregiver easier. This is the sort of thing that used to come home from the hospital after giving birth for cleansing the area and was called a peri bottle, but they're hard to find by that name. The bottles at the beauty store are actually for mixing and applying hair dye but they work great for cleansing.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Something tells me it is not low vision that is the problem. I know blind people who are IMMACULATELY clean and well dressed. My suspicion is that your mother is likely developing dementia.....and lack of hygiene is one of the classic signs, especially if this is a recent development.

The cleansing wipes are nice as long as they are not used exclusively in place of toilet tissue, because they will clog the works. I like the water-bottle-as-bidet idea; it's safe and efficient.

Meanwhile, I still think "mom" needs to be evaluated for dementia.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

My mother has Alzheimer and she had the same issue. She would not clean up properly after bowels. So after much research I decided to get a Bidet attachment for her. I am highly satisfied so much so that i use it myself. Very convenient and easy to install. I got it from Amazon and as a matter of fact it costed me under 25.The only negative is that you won't get warm water.
amazon/gp/product/B0043D3ANE/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o00_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

In surgical supply stores they sell things call "Peri bottles". They're like those ketchup & mustard dispensers you would see at a picnic on the table---plastic with a "nipple" attachment that you squirt water out of. She can unscrew the plastic peri bottle, fill it with warm water & when she is done, she can rinse her backside with the water & then wipe with toilet paper.

Another thing is baby wipes. They are MUCH BETTER than those allegedly flushable wipes. Get Huggies "one and done" brand---they're thick & sturdy, and 2 wipes will clean an adult's butt off lickety split.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Bidet attachments run anywhere from $39.99 to over $1,000. At the top end you get temp control, lights and adjustable massage. whoopee!
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

Of course alcohol is a drying agent.. That's what you want. Remember I suggested 50% ( the other 50% is water.) Soap and water takes too long. You want something quick..... a fast easy wipe and then toss.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Veronica91...actually you can get Dettol through Amazon! :-)

amazon/DETTOL-First-Aid-Antiseptic-Liquid/dp/B000GCRX6G
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Sorry, hit the wrong button.

They are NOT flushable, but I wrap them in a plastic grocery bag and throw them out with his Depends. Lysol type spray in the bag.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

I use the same thing that I use to clean the rest of his body between showers. They are called 'adult wash cloths' and I get them at Walgreens in the depends dept. They are soft, smell good and are larger than the wet wipes, which lessens the change of getting it on your hands. He doesn't always give me time to get gloves on.
The privacy thing was hard in the beginning. He (husband) was more sad than any thing else. But we both got used to it. Just like we got used to so many other horrors this disease brings with it. Good luck.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

OMG, I don't know if I'd use alcohol. Perhaps mineral oil? Alcohol is a drying agent.

I know Wet Ones has aloe and glycerin.

Perhaps you should ask her doctor about this. Also, does she have loose stool? If so, perhaps there is a way to firm it up so she can go 'cleaner' and not have to clean up as much. Again, ask her doctor.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

And one of those levels would be UTI's--believe me, you don't want to go there.

I like Florsa's idea using the small bottle filled with warm water, but you'll have to do that for her, which was what I was going to suggest.

You don't say how old your mom is. My mom has low vision also, but she's 91 and has vascular dementia. At times, I have to help her with her bowel movements (hey, nobody said this was easy) :)

At some point, you just need to tell her about UTI's and how you want to help her clean herself.

I've never had problems with the wet wipes clogging the toilet, although I see one commenter has. I've used them for years. In my opinion, Wet Ones are the best and you can get those through Amazon at lower cost and buy in bulk. And yes, if you feel they are going to clog up the toilet, I would put them in a lined container next to the toilet.

Also, since she is low vision, please check your toilet seat because I've noted my mom leaves stains.

Hopefully, this helps.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

We have been using the Kirkland brand (COSTCO) wet wipes and haven't had a plumbing problem yet. It has helped with her being better cleaned even though she tears the sheet in half (she is from the depression years and we cannot get her to stop doing that with all paper items). I will look into adding the bidet attachments.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

be careful with alcohol on the anl area because she can get sore from any feces on there, think wet farts!!!
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

I started using a spray by Coloplast on my mom after we discovered it in rehab. I spray it on a baby wipe. It smells good and really helps keep her clean. When she was in the bathroom , I would just stick my head in and say, I'll give you a quick wipe when you're done. I didn't take no for an answer and she just started accepting it. Haven't had a single UTI since I took over that job. A pain, but better than another doctor visit.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

LindaLouie, As Veronica mentioned, you just have to attend to her and do it yourself, just to make sure she's clean. 1) Keep a box of gloves on the commode top, counter or sink-top. Use a bottle of 50% isopropyl alcohol rather than water and apply on regular toilet paper....... the gloves, the toilet paper and the alcohol should keep her clean after every B. M.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

I agree with Pam. There is nothing better than soap and water to keep things clean. I have been dealing with an incontinent Mom with advanced Alzheimers for 4 years and nothing has worked better than washing her "area" with soap and water.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Thank you for the above suggestions. I've used a small bottle filled with warm water and pour the water over the anal area, after which it cleans easily using only toilet paper which can be discarded in the toilet.
Helpful Answer (3)
Report

As previously mentioned, Please I beg, do not put those wipes in the toilet even if they say they are flushable they are not and will cost you tons of money. DH is a plumber and we make our living unplugging houses where they insist on using those things. In our house there is a lined wastebasket next to the throne just for such items. No hair or dental floss either folks! That is my public service announcement for the day :)
Helpful Answer (10)
Report

Let her make the decision to start.'Would you like me to finish off Mom? or Would you allow me to help?"
If she is unable to properly care for heself in other ways you just have to step in and do it for her. She will get very sore very quickly if feces are allowed to remain on the skin. Let her wash what she can reach and then wash her back for her and that way you can get at the poopy area. not always pleasant so get some gloves. No choice really but you can aproach it nicely. You know your Mom best. You can get one of the warmer used for baby wipes too. Pam's idea of a bidet attachment is the best but may be expensive.Colin's dedicated sponge and bowl caomes a good second on the list. I wish we could get detol in the US it smells so nice and fresh.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

My mom cannot keep herself clean without help from the home and the last time she was at me she was smelling just awful that I had to clean her up myself. I think she was so embarrassed that she complained her usual saying that I must leave her alone. When I bathed her she told me to stop it that she was clean enough. Very sad.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

There are assistive devices on the market to help wipe after a BM. Has she been evaluated for a neurological disease/disorder? Her lack of attention to hygiene could be a sign of dementia. Also, dementia causes visual field narrowing, so it is harder for them to focus on a wide angle.
Mom's sign of this was not noticing the approaching fork or spoon when we try to feed her.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

Well I have a handbasin beside the toilet and half fill it with water a sponge and some Dettol and a little liquid soap, I clean it first with toilet tissues and finish it with the sponge in the basin and dry it with tissues. After it is over, I cleanup and do the same ready for the next visit.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Are you sure it's vision that is causing the failure or is she forgetting to give it much attention. Just curious.

If it's the the vision, then I agree that wet wipes are good as long as she will remember to throw them in waste basket. I saw a report on tv that certain wipes will dissolve in pipes, but others will clog it eventually.

There might be more ideas from associations for the blind. It must be a common problem.
Helpful Answer (4)
Report

Only thing with the flushable wipes, they will eventually clog up the pipes.... one would need to wrap them up and toss out in the trash.

Those wipes are pretty nice.... I have an older heavy cat who just can't reach clean herself, so I use those wipes.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

There are flushable wipes on the market, you can get them at Walmart. A moist wipe might help with the cleanup better than dry tissue.
Helpful Answer (4)
Report

Talk to your plumber about bidet attachments for the toilet. Get the warm water type if you can, it's a lot nicer.
Helpful Answer (3)
Report

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.
Subscribe to
Our Newsletter