If your elderly loved one has dementia, one of the things they are likely to struggle with is bathing. The changes in their brain can make it difficult for them to remember to take baths. These changes can also make them forget why it is important to take baths or how to bathe, as well. The good news is that you and elder care providers can help with bathing time for your elderly loved one if they have dementia. Here are some tips that can help with bathing and bathing-related tasks.

Understand Your Loved One’s Stance

When it comes to dementia, there are many changes taking place. Your elderly loved one might be refusing to take a bath for a variety of reasons. Finding out what those reasons are can help you to make them more comfortable taking baths. You should talk to the elder care providers that are with your elderly loved one the most. They might have an idea of why your loved one is refusing to take baths. Some of the reasons why people with dementia refuse bath time include the following:

Elder Care Cornelius, NC: Seniors and Personal Care

  • Feel vulnerable
  • Feel embarrassed or ashamed
  • Think the water is too hot or too cold but can’t express those feelings
  • Are in pain

Once you can determine the reason your elderly loved one isn’t taking baths well, you can try to create a plan to solve the problem.

Want Respect

If your elderly loved is in the earlier stages of dementia, they still know what is going on, at least somewhat. They may want some respect from you and their elder care providers. For instance, if you see that your elderly loved one needs help with bath time and you just go into the bathroom without asking, that isn’t respectful. Your elderly loved one might just want people to ask if they can help instead of taking over.

Think of Safety

Your elderly loved one might be scared to take baths. This is likely the case if they have slipped and/or fallen in the bathtub already. They may think they are going to get hurt while bathing. If this is the case, you can install grab bars and non-slip mats to make them feel safer. If needed, you can put a chair in the bathtub, too.


These are some of the tips to help your elderly loved one with bathing time if they have dementia. There are changes happening in the brain when someone has dementia. Try to keep this in mind and how your elderly loved one is feeling in mind when helping them with baths.

If you or an aging loved one are considering Elder Care in Cornelius, NC, please call the professional staff at Caring at Heart today at (704) 379-7510. Serving Charlotte, Statesville, Ballantyne, Mooresville, Huntersville, Matthews, Concord, Gastonia, Pineville and Indian Trail