Mom's 75 and has had dementia for at least two years. She didn't shower twice a week when she was well and she's just about to tell everyone off and quit because she's not real motivated to begin with. She's doing her physical therapy and is a lot more with it mentally. I don't want her to give up because of a shower. I'm tired of battling the CNAs and nurses over this. Am I wrong?

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Twice a week sound minimum to me. I know older people don't perspire as much, but have other body odor issues, such as incontinence, or layering on too much perfume to combat the "funkiness". Skin cells are still sloughing off, and they do smell.

If everyone in the place showered only once a week--phew--it becomes one of those "stinky" facilities we all abhor.

Also, by bathing her, the caregivers can see if she has skin issues before they become serious.
Helpful Answer (7)
Reply to Midkid58

2 showers a week is minimum for hygiene.

She needs to suck it up and shower.
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Reply to Isthisrealyreal

Do you really want your mom to be smelling badly? Also, her nether regions need to be kept clean to help prevent UTIs.
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Reply to XenaJada

I know in the “old days” people took a shower once a week (as my FIL said, “whether they needed it or not.” 🤭) But this is now and we understand that hygiene is more important than previously thought.

In my humble opinion, twice a week is not asking too much. Maybe your mom would be more cooperative if you mentioned you could detect an odor about her.

I doubt that you’d find any facility willing to give up on this issue.
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Reply to SueC1957

My mother in AL has 3 showers a week. I agree with others. Bathing twice a week is not excessive. It should make her feel better but I also think she should be told that are the rules. It's good that they care.
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Reply to Riverdale

I agree you won’t get the facility to budge. The center may have this policy due to an issue in the past like an infection outbreak or something and the center made the policy that every patient must shower twice a week for quality or something like that.

If she refused, they would mark her as “non-compliant“?If so, that’s pretty harsh too.

I think while a person is a resident with other folks in a shared space like rehab it’s reasonable to ask them to have two showers a week. It may be because of a standard of care they developed according to a new industry standards for best practices.

But non compliant for this? That’s too far, imo.
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Reply to Shane1124
RaeSmitty Mar 15, 2019
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My sister was in a home for years. In the beginning she was taken to the bathing room and given a bath. Later when she could not be moved she was given a sponge bath in the bed. This was done for several years. No ill effects from the sponge bath. I will add that she was turned on a regular basis.
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Reply to OldSailor

My Moms rehab and the NH gives 1 shower and hair wash per week, but the other days the residents are helped to either wash up in the bathroom or are given a sponge bath on the bed, depending on their capabilities. Theres not much physical activity happening that produces sweat, so the important part is just keeping the nether regions clean. Would that be a compromise both the facility and your Mom could live with?
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Reply to rocketjcat

Older adults who need assistance with bathing often find the activity to be both physically and emotionally demanding, as do their caregivers. For several contributing factors, including pain; fatigue and weakness; confusion; anxiety resulting from being naked in front of strangers, being afraid of falling, and being in a noisy or unfamiliar place; and discomfort from cold or drafty bathing areas or they fill the water sprays are harsh.
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Reply to RaeSmitty

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