Incontinence is hard on your senior’s skin. The waste products and bacteria in urine can actually burn the skin, and that can cause irritation and injury over time. Here are some ideas that you can use on a daily basis to help your elderly family member to avoid being uncomfortable while managing incontinence.
Keep Your Senior’s Skin Dry and Clean
Part of the problem with skin irritation from incontinence is that the skin is moist and exposed to bacteria that can be damaging. Keeping your senior’s skin clean and dry is crucial for stopping irritation from forming. Soapless cleansers can be extremely helpful, especially when your senior is not at home and needs to clean up. At home or on the go, your senior might find wipes to be a convenient option.
Change Undergarments Frequently
It’s easy to forget to change undergarments or pads as often as truly necessary, but that’s another common cause of skin irritation as a result of incontinence. Keep clean undergarments and pads readily available and encourage your senior to change them often. If you’re the one helping her to change them, it’s a good idea to swap them out when they’re even a little bit damp to prevent skin damage.
Use Products that Moisturize and Protect
After cleansing skin, make sure to moisturize and protect your senior’s skin. Some products do both in one step, so make sure to read the label and look at what the product is designed to do. Using a moisture barrier cream can prevent urine and bacteria from building up on your senior’s skin. These products work best when your senior is using them consistently so that her skin is continually protected.
Talk to Her Doctor if You See Signs of Skin Irritation
As soon as you do see any signs of redness, a rash, or irritation, talk to your elderly family member’s doctor. Developing skin irritation doesn’t mean that you’re doing anything wrong at all. You can do all the right things and your senior might still develop a rash. What’s important is treating that skin issue before it gets worse. Develop a plan with her doctor and implement it right away.
As much as you might want to be, you can’t always be with your senior. She may still need help managing incontinence issues, though. Having a caregiver available to help her with these difficulties can go a long way toward helping her to be healthy.
If you or an aging loved-one are considering hiring Senior Care in Highland Park, IL, call the caring staff at LifeCare Home Health & In-Home Services. Call (888) 606-4199 LifeCare serves all of the Chicago Metro Area.
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