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Bathing Tips for Stroke Survivors

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General Tips

  • Showers are safer than tubs because there is less chance of falling when getting in and out.
  • If you must use a tub, use a special seat from a medical equipment store that can be put on the tub rim.
  • Bath benches can make showering easier.
  • Have grab bars installed in the shower. Use non-skid tape or a rubber bath mat on the bottom of the tub or shower.

One-Handed Tips

  • Adapt the shower with a hand-held showerhead with hose. This makes it easier to wash underarms and private areas.
  • Instead of a loose bar of soap, put soap in a nylon stocking and attach it to a grab bar.
  • Use a long-handled sponge or brush to wash back, legs, and feet.
  • Pump bottles of liquid soap may work better for getting soap on a washcloth.
  • Sew two washcloths together on three sides to make a pocket for holding a bar of soap.
  • To wring out a washcloth press it against the side of the sink with the good hand; or drape it over the faucet and twist it.
  • To wash the unaffected arm while sitting on a bath bench, hold the washcloth between the knees and move your arm back and forth over it.
  • Instead of trying to rub dry the whole body after bathing, slip into a terry-cloth robe, along with a pair of slipper socks. Or, sew two large towels together and throw them around the shoulders.
  • To apply deodorant under the affected arm, lean slightly forward, allowing the arm to dangle and then apply roll-on deodorant.