Healthy skin can keep your elderly family member comfortable and ensure that she doesn’t develop bigger problems, such as sores that don’t heal.
Pay Attention to Special Care in the Sun
It’s always best for your senior to spend shorter periods of time in direct sunlight, especially if she’s not wearing sunscreen. Whenever possible, however, encourage your aging adult to wear sunscreen that has an SPF of 30 or higher. Read the label carefully and choose one that says it covers against broad spectrum rays for the best coverage.
Avoid Water That’s Too Hot
Aside from using sun protection, there are plenty of other opportunities to protect your aging family member’s skin. Extremely hot water, whether in the bath or the shower, can feel good, but it’s extremely drying to the skin. If your senior is used to taking hot showers or baths, encourage her to back that temperature down a bit for better skin.
Use Lotions and Creams
Lotions, creams, and ointments help to maintain the moisture in your senior’s skin. As your elderly family member ages, her skin becomes thinner and has less of a fat layer underneath. Her natural oil production may slow down, too, which can lead to drier skin that is more prone to irritation and itching. Lotions and creams help to protect the oils that are already there.
Dry Skin Carefully
When skin is wet or damp, it is a lot more fragile than it is when it’s dry and well-moisturized. After a bath or a shower, how your senior dries her skin can make a huge difference. The rougher that you or your aging family member are with the towel, the more likely you are to scratch her skin or cause other types of irritation.
Examine Skin Regularly
Make it a regular habit to check your senior’s skin for wounds, marks, or signs that there might be something wrong. Even if you’re not sure whether something is a problem or not, bring it up with her doctor just to be on the safe side.
Senior care providers can be invaluable in helping your elderly family member to spot skin troubles. They’ve got plenty of experience in these types of situations and can help your aging adult to pay attention to all of her skin.