If your elderly parent has recently moved in with you because they are bedridden and cannot take care of themselves, you may find yourself having to give your loved one a bed bath and wonder how you can make the process easier on them. If so, use the following tips to help keep your elderly parent comfortable during their bed bath.
Keep an Eye on the Water Temperature
While preparing the water for your parent's bath, you want to make sure that the temperature is neither too hot or too cold. Because their fragile skin is more susceptible than yours to temperature extremes, make sure the water is somewhere in between. You should also keep an eye on the water temperature throughout the bath to make sure it does not get too cold.
The easiest way to test the water to see how it may feel on your parent's skin is to test it with the inside of your wrist. Your skin is thinner there than on your hands and arms, so it can give you a similar sensation to what your loved one feels. If it feels too hot or cold on your wrist, make the appropriate adjustments.
Wash One Section of the Body at a Time
While you are giving your parent their bath, you want to make sure to keep them covered as much as possible with towels or blankets so that they stay warm. Exposing their wet skin to air will cause them to cool down very quickly and will make them uncomfortable.
You can minimize the amount of bare skin that is exposed by washing only one body section at a time. Pull out each arm and leg while you are washing them, then put them back under the cover once you are finished. Then, once you get to the larger parts of the body, uncover one small section at a time, working quickly to minimize the time the skin is exposed.
Pat their skin dry so that the evaporation of the moisture does not excessively cool them off. This also keeps the cover from becoming and remaining damp and cold against their skin.
Using the above tips while giving your bedridden elderly parent a bed bath can help keep them warm and comfortable throughout the process. If you need further guidance or need help with taking care of your aged parent, contact a home health service to discuss your options.