My wife, age 88, does not like to take a shower. Is this normal?

3 answers | Last updated: Nov 23, 2016
A fellow caregiver asked...

My wife, age 88, does not like to take a shower. Is this normal?

Expert Answers

Just in the past week, I've had a number of questions about bathing. It really is common for older people to struggle with baths and showers and there are many understandable reasons for this. I'm going to assume this is a new development for your wife, versus how she's always been. If your wife has balance or strength problems, she may fear falling. Some elderly people can't feel water temperatures as well as before, so your wife could be hot or cold; making her hesitant. If your wife has dementia the feel or sound of the water may bother or even frighten her. Try exploring these possibilities in a conversation with your wife. If she's hesitant to talk about the subject (she may be embarrased or self-consious), emphasize that you want to help. Take a look at this answer to a similar question, written by our expert nurse practicioner. Our phsyical therapist also weighed in on the same topic. And here's a general guide to bathing your mom, but it applies to any woman and may help you with your wife. The reassuring news is that there are solutions to most issues around bathing -- alternatives that will help your wife stay clean. You need to learn a little more about what's going on with her. I'd also suggest talking to her doctor. A medical opinon could be a big help.

Community Answers

A fellow caregiver answered...

whats the answer to my question????

Don rowan answered...

my 69 year old wife each day tells me she has already showered

when she has not should she shower each day as she has all of her

married life, 47 years or every other day??

Don Rowan