Caregiving Tips for Alzheimer’s Patients:
When someone has Alzheimer’s disease, it affects everyone in the family. At some point, people with Alzheimer’s disease will need help for bathing, combing their hair, brushing their teeth, and getting dressed. Because these are personal activities, patient may not like help, however these suggestions may be useful for routine care.
Safety Tips: To keep the person with Alzheimer’s safe during bath time.
- Never leave a confused or frail person alone in the tub or shower.
- Always check the water temperature before he or she gets in the tub or shower.
- Use a hand-held showerhead.
- Use a rubber bath mat and safety bars in the tub.
- Use a sturdy shower chair to support a person who is unsteady and to prevent falls.
- Don’t use bath oil, it can make the tub slippery During a Bath or Shower.
- Allow the person with Alzheimer’s to do as much as possible. This protects his or her dignity and helps the person feel more in control.
Here are other tips:
- After Bathing: Prevent rashes or infections by patting the person’s skin with a towel. Make sure the person is completely dry. Be sure to dry between folds of skin.
- Washing: Wash the person’s hair in the sink with a hose attachment may be easier than doing it in the shower or bathtub.
- Dressing: People with Alzheimer’s disease often need more time to dress. It can be hard for them to choose their clothes. They might wear the wrong clothing for the season.
- Mouth Care: Show the person how to brush his or her teeth. Go step by step. Remember to let the person do as much as possible.
- Ask the person to rinse his or her mouth with water after each meal and use mouthwash once a day.
Try to allow the person to dress on their own for as long as possible. Here are some tips to assist them as needed:
- Lay out clothes in the order the person should put them on and give step-by-step dressing instructions.
- Buy loose-fitting, comfortable clothing three or four sets of the same clothes if the person wants to wear the same clothing every day.
- Use Velcro tape or large zipper pulls for clothing instead of shoelaces, buttons, or buckles. Try slip-on shoes that won’t slide off or shoes with Velcro straps.