Personal hygiene for elderly seniors can be a noticeable problem. The more we age, the more difficult it is to take care of our daily personal care needs. This is partly due to age-related health conditions like Arthritis, osteoporosis, strokes, diabetes, Parkinson’s, hip and knee replacements, balance issues, and other conditions that lead to limited mobility. These conditions profoundly affect elderly seniors’ ability to perform daily hygiene routines.
For example, the pain and stiffness in Arthritis hands make it difficult to hold a toothbrush or hairbrush, and it’s also excruciating to do so. Another example is an elderly person experiencing balancing issues after a stroke or hip and knee replacement surgery. Anyone with these conditions will have difficulties bathing in a bathtub or standing in a shower. Losing the ability to perform daily hygiene routines like these can cause elderly seniors to self-isolate, which leads to a whole new set of problems. Those who choose to isolate themselves may do so to hide that daily self-care has become an issue.
The Most Common Reason for Elderly Seniors to maintaining personal hygiene daily
One of the most important reasons for maintaining personal hygiene for elderly seniors is to preserve their physical health. As we age, our immune system weakens. Because of this fact, elderly seniors are more susceptible to viruses and bacteria. They need to limit their exposure to places where these germs are more common. An elderly senior coming down with the flu can be deadly. Healthline reports that 85 percent of all deaths due to the flu are people over 65 years old. In that same group, over 70 percent are treated for the flu in hospitals.
Elderly seniors’ physical health is also compromised because they are more susceptible to skin infections. Aging skin is less likely to heal quickly. Aging causes the skin to get thinner, and other body changes cause loose skin or skin folds. Neglecting to maintain a regular hygiene routine may lead to developing skin infections. According to Dispatch Health, some common types of skin infections elderly seniors are likely to develop include shingles, scabies, and fungal infections, to name a few.
Shingles appear in elderly seniors who had chickenpox as a child, scabies comes from human itch mites, and fungal infections are usually found on the feet and nails of those with diabetes. Elderly people with diabetes must be conscientious about keeping their feet and nails clean to prevent developing fungal infections. Dispatch Health recommends that the elderly keep up with their personal hygiene by consistently washing their hands and making sure any open cuts or wounds to the skin are cleaned immediately.
Medical and physical conditions that may prevent personal hygiene care for the elderly
There are several reasons elderly seniors are unable to maintain their personal hygiene care. One of those reasons has to do with age-related medical conditions. Elderly seniors are more likely to develop medical conditions like Arthritis, Parkinson’s, or suffer a stroke. The pain and stiffness in the hands and other joints caused by Arthritis limits an elderly senior’s mobility and grasping abilities. Age-related shaky hand tremors or essential tremors caused by Parkinson’s make it difficult to clean themselves when bathing or using the toilet thoroughly. Recovering from a stroke may limit the use of one of their hands or one of their feet.
Another one of those reasons may have to do with physical changes brought on by a hip or knee replacement. The recovery time for surgeries like these may take months. While recovering, bending, or stretching during toileting or bathing is virtually impossible without assistance.
Assistive Devices to help with Elderly Personal Hygiene Care
Daily personal hygiene care for elderly seniors is so important that it cannot be stressed enough! For many seniors, they have no idea where to start looking for the right solution. Listed below are a few product suggestions to help.
9-Piece Foam Tubing Grips To Build Up Utensil Handles
A great place to start is with this 9 PC – Foam Tubing Grips for Utensil Handles. These nifty closed-cell tubes come in a variety of colors and hole-size openings. Cut them to any length and add them to your toothbrush, hairbrush, hair comb, or razor. Building up the handle of these grooming utensils makes them easier and comfortable to hold for people with Arthritis and other hand dexterity limitations. These foam tubings are removable, affordable, and come in an assortment of colors.
Solvac Touchless Automatic Soap Dispenser
Using an automatic soap dispenser eliminates the hassle of holding on to a bar of soap. The Solvac Touchless Automatic Soap Dispenser features an adjustable soap dispensing volume control dial and an infrared sensor to detect your hand when placed under the dispenser nozzle. Place it on your bathroom vanity, in your shower, or on your bathtub. The convenience of this automatic soap dispenser speaks for itself. No more dropping soap and possibly falling from bending over to retrieve it!
Extra Long Ergonomic Contour Handled Bath Sponge
This is a simple and safe solution for people with limited mobility. The Extra Long Ergonomic Contour Handled Bath Sponge is lightweight and curved for cleaning those hard-to-reach areas and has a built-up handle for easy grasping. Also, the sponge has an antibacterial ingredient to eliminate the spread of germs. People in wheelchairs, people recovering from hip, knee, or back surgery, and those with poor hand dexterity will love this easy-to-clean and easy-to-store bathing device.
Long Easy Reach Toenail Clipper
The Long Easy Reach Toenail Clipper is perfect for individuals having problems reaching and bending. It is especially ideal for people with diabetes who must keep their feet and toes clean. It is effortless to use. Simply push the easy to operate button at the top of the toenail clipper, and it opens and closes the actual clipper on the other end. No bending, no stretching, no worries!
Pistol-Grip Remote Long Reach Toenail Clipper
This is another extra-long toenail clipper. The Pistol-Grip Remote Long Reach Toenail Clipper extends for reaching without bending. It features an ergonomically shaped handle with a trigger action for ease of use when activating the heavy-duty, stainless steel clipper on the other end. It is great for people with limited mobility and people living with obesity. It measures 18 inches long.
Shower Foot Massager Scrubber & Cleaner
This is the perfect solution for anyone with diabetes, elderly seniors with problems bending to clean their feet. The Shower Foot Massager Scrubber and Cleaner allows users to clean the bottom of their feet thoroughly and between their toes. It improves the users’ foot and leg circulation, which is a much-needed healthy benefit while managing athletes’ foot and foot fungus. Features include many scrubbing bristles for that spa experience foot massage and a suction cup base for stability. It makes a great gift too!
High Pressure 6 Settings Handheld Shower Head
Hospital Grade No Rinse Shampoo and Body Wash
Bottom Buddy Toilet Wiping Aid with Contoured Handle
Luxe Bidet Self Cleaning Fresh Water Toilet Attachment
The Luxe Bidet Neo 320 is a safe and easy way to ensure your bottom is fresh and clean. It attaches to most toilets quickly and easily. All that’s required for installation are a screwdriver and wrench. Features include:
- two chrome-plated knobs for easy operation by elderly seniors with limited grasping ability, selecting warm or cool water spray, and adjusting the water pressure
- a retractable, self-cleaning nozzle for releasing a clean, steady stream of water
- a second retractable nozzle for a delicate spray experience
- a nozzle guard gate for sanitary protection.
Luxe Bidet Neo 320 comes with everything you’ll need for quick and easy installation. It saves money, helps protect the environment, and is affordable.
These are just a few personal hygiene products to help elderly seniors maintain an independent and self-reliant lifestyle. Other personal hygiene routines should include regular visits to the dentist to prevent gum disease and denture care and regular visits to the eye doctor. Aging seniors want to make sure the eye doctors check for vision problems like cataracts, macular degeneration, and other eye diseases.
For more information on these and other personal hygiene care products, please contact us at 1.877.728.9507. Our customer care team is available to assist you Monday through Friday, 9 am to 5 pm EST.