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Shower Refusal

Andrew35

New member
Feb 27, 2020
2
Hi all
I'm new to the forum and it seems like a great resource so please forgive me for posting a thread before I've gone through the archives. At he moment my dad just won't shower it's been about 2 weeks and today he wont change out of his clothes that he wet himself in last night, my mum was pretty upset this morning. So I called the hotline and the they were really helpful in giving some advice, one thing they mentioned was about color schemes and the design of the bathroom. I had never considered this as being the cause of his fear of showering (he seems worried he might lose his legs when confronted with showering). So if anyone can cast their expert eye on our bathroom and let me know what things we could change to try and make it less scary for him. I'm gonna get on and scour the forums for useful advice, thanks in advance.
 

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marionq

Registered User
Apr 24, 2013
6,117
Scotland
Hi all
I'm new to the forum and it seems like a great resource so please forgive me for posting a thread before I've gone through the archives. At he moment my dad just won't shower it's been about 2 weeks and today he wont change out of his clothes that he wet himself in last night, my mum was pretty upset this morning. So I called the hotline and the they were really helpful in giving some advice, one thing they mentioned was about color schemes and the design of the bathroom. I had never considered this as being the cause of his fear of showering (he seems worried he might lose his legs when confronted with showering). So if anyone can cast their expert eye on our bathroom and let me know what things we could change to try and make it less scary for him. I'm gonna get on and scour the forums for useful advice, thanks in advance.
He may be afraid standing up in the cubicle. The occupational therapist provided my husband with a plastic shower chair which stood inside the shower and John was very happy to sit on it. I always warmed it with hot water first. Do lots of praising and chattering while manoeuvring him into the cubicle.
 

Pete1

Registered User
Jul 16, 2019
813
Hi @Andrew35, welcome to the forum. If he doesn't want to go into the cubicle could his carer(s) (don't know if your Mum has any help) give him a full body wash by the sink, not ideal I know but better than nothing.
 

RosettaT

Registered User
Sep 9, 2018
499
Mid Lincs
Yes my OH's OT said the same, dark surfaces can be perceived as holes. Also one of the first things to go is spatial awareness meaning things can appear to be much closer or narrower than they really are. The doorway from our sun lounge where we spend our days to the kitchen is quite narrow so when OH does therapy with the OT that involves walking through that door way he often hesitates and is reluctant to go any further.
 

Sirena

Registered User
Feb 27, 2018
2,243
In addition to the good advice above, is the shower cubicle the only option? My mother stopped being amenable to showers fairly early in her dementia, but she would have a bath - she was physically able to get in and out, with supervision from a carer. She's in a care home now and I think she often has strip washes rather than a bath - she certainly wouldn't accept a shower as she didn't like the feeling of water falling on her.
 

Jaded'n'faded

Registered User
Jan 23, 2019
806
High Peak
If you can get him in there (good luck!) try showering from the feet upwards rather than having the water pouring over his head and face.

Have to say, I hate overhead showers for exactly that reason - hate the water on my face!
 

Dimpsy

Registered User
Sep 2, 2019
1,415
What a lovely shower room, I couldn't spot a radiator.
My mum up, until her Christmas chest infection showered herself every morning without fail. She has fully recovered bit the link of getting up and into the shower had totally disappeared, so I put her in and wash her myself. She still likes a shower but doesn't like to strip off of it's chilly so warming the bathroom first is a must, and I put the towel and her towelling robe on the hot towel rail for after.
My mum is a bit wobbly standing so we bought a shower stool that swivels and she feels secure sitting down.
Good luck with this problem, there's always something isn't there! but you'll always find lot's of willing help here.