If you are a caregiver, you may find helping an older adult to get dressed very complicated.
Getting dressed is simple for a healthy person. However, when people suffer from certain diseases or conditions, this everyday activity becomes a struggle.
Seniors who’ve had a stroke or recent surgery usually need help to get dressed. Also, older adults who have arthritis, limited mobility, or dementia might find dressing and undressing challenging.
In these situations, they usually need a hand. Dressing several times a day can be stressful for you since it sometimes takes much more time than planned.
To help your senior get dressed easily, here are several tips.
Give Them a Choice
Everyone should choose their clothes. Never try to force your loved one to wear something they don’t like. They are not five years old, wearing whatever you buy them.
This is highly important for a sense of independence. If they can’t choose what they wear, they probably can’t decide on anything else.
On the other hand, don’t give an older adult more than three choices. If there are more than three, the process of getting dressed could be even more delayed.
Give Your Adult More Time If Needed
Getting dressed can take a lot of time, especially if your older adult has reduced flexibility. The whole process may take longer than planned, so you should take that into account.
Planning extra time for dressing will save your nerves if you’re going somewhere.
When you are in a hurry, it stresses yourself and your loved one. The situation can become unnecessarily tensed. Instead of raising your voice, give your senior more time and keep everyone calm and relaxed.
Pay Attention to Skin Issues
When helping your senior to dress, check if they have any skin issues. Especially pay attention to heels, elbows, and shoulders.
People who spend most of their time in one place are prone to skin irritation and redness.
Determining skin issues early is crucial in avoiding open wounds. Infections are also common.
If your older adult has limited mobility, exercise together. Even though they can’t get out of the bed, with your help, they can perform simple exercises.
What If They Start Fighting?
Older adults with cognitive impairment, such as Alzheimer’s, may be combative when you try to help them get their clothes on.
Be careful with your approach. Don’t startle them, and never yell if they are defensive. Learn over time what is the best way to help them put clothes on.
Try to understand, and with a calm and soft voice reassure them there is no danger.
People suffering from dementia are particularly sensitive, so find out which situations make them uneasy and avoid them at any cost.
Browse the Internet for Specialized Clothing
Yes, there is such a thing as specialized clothes for people with dementia. It is impossible to buy them in regular stores, but they can easily be found on the internet.
Wondering how to find it?
Just Google it. Type “Alzheimer’s clothing,” “Dementia clothing,” or “Adaptive clothing for seniors.”
You will get over 16 million results if you type “Alzheimer’s clothing.” Search through the websites and find the appropriate clothes for your loved one.
With specialized clothes, they will easily get dressed.
The process of getting dressed doesn’t need to be that complicated. Follow these simple tips and make your life and the life of your loved one easier. Give your older adult more time if needed, and try to find suitable clothing for them.