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My father is 82 and in good health. Dad is not able to talk her into getting a shower, having her hair done, taking her to Podiatrist (her toenails are long and thick). She hasn't gone to a store with him in 3 years. There are 3 of us kids. I've spent up to 6 weeks at their home, out of state, twice and she just will not do anything to help herself. She does not have dementia. Depression. She was on medication, but would not see therapist. Has anyone out there dealt with this?

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Can you find out why she doesn't want to take a shower? Does she feel unsafe? Get a shower seat in shower and spray her down. Some seats are long enough to have her sit on one end and slide to other end that is inside shower. If all else fails, join a YMCA and take her swimming. Ours has a special floating chair for seniors and handicapped showers.
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Reply to dads1caregiver
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Cheryl, regarding the lack of showering. As we age we tend to find that taking a shower can be as exhausting as spending a hour at a gym.

Another thing can happen, claustrophobia. Most houses have a tub shower or narrow walk-in shower. Then the glass shower doors make the closed in feeling even worse. I plan to remove the glass doors from my shower in the near future. It's becoming a cleaning nightmare making it difficult to clean out the tub.

If one is standing in the shower and leaning back to rinse one's hair, the muscles in our stomach will tighten up thus limiting the blood flow to the brain which makes one feel faint.

Let's throw in the fear of falling in a shower. A very real fear. Even with a tub mat, hair conditioners can make that mat slippery. I have one of those mats where it looks like pebbles so there is a better feel of safety on the feet.

In-between showers, baby wipes are a big help :)

For Mom not wanting to have her hair done, I remember my 90+ mother didn't like leaning back to have her hair washed. It made her feel light-headed, so to solve that problem Mom would wash her hair at home first. Thus, no washing at the salon. It worked out great. I do the same thing for myself.

Store shopping? I have always hated shopping, so for the past 4 years I have been using on-line grocery shopping, with either curb-side pickup or truck delivery to the house. It works great as I found whenever I had to look up to the top shelf, I would get what is called "top shelf vertigo" :P

Oh, how I wished I had the energy to do what I did decades ago. I bet your Mom is feeling the same way. It can put a damper on how one feels.
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Reply to freqflyer
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Has Mom been formally evaluated for dementia and/or depression? These two conditions need to be diagnosed by a doctor, preferably a geriatric psychiatrist. She really needs to see a doctor for testing. Poor hygiene can cause infections and those infections can be very serious. She is most likely suffering from clinical depression. Loss of interest in caring for oneself is a big red flag. So is loss of interest in going out and doing things. She can’t be very pleasant for your father to live with. She most likely has no interest in housekeeping either and Dad most likely needs to do it all. You might want to consider an in-home aide to help Dad out. Sometimes elders will listen to a stranger before a loved one and an aide trained in dealing with difficult people may be able to convince her to take care of herself.
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Reply to Ahmijoy
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anonymous418566 May 27, 2019
I tend to agree with this assessment. Clinical depression can be triggered by various things, especially in elderly. Get mother to a real good gereactric physician for evaluation.
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