Nursing Care - Personal Hygiene in the Elderly

Maintenance of personal hygiene will determine the health status, in which individuals consciously and personal initiative to maintain health and prevent disease. This effort is more profitable for the individual because it is more cost-effective, time and energy in creating prosperity and health.

Efforts maintenance of personal hygiene, covering about: cleanliness hair, eyes, ears, teeth, mouth, skin, nails, and cleaning the dress. In this attempt to maintain personal hygiene, family knowledge of the importance of personal hygiene is very necessary. Because knowledge or cognitive, is a very important domain in shaping one's actions.

Elderly need to get attention by seeking that they are not too dependent on other people and be able to take care of themselves (self-contained), maintaining personal hygiene, which of course is the duty of the family and the environment.

Along with physical setbacks, elderly in need of families to meet personal hygiene.

There are several factors that affect the personal hygiene of the elderly are:

1. Level of knowledge
2. Physical and psychological condition of the elderly Elderly
3. Economic factors
4. Cultural factors
5. Environmental factors
6. Body image factors
7. Family roles factors

Nurses have a role in providing health education about personal hygiene, ie as family advocacy. Nurses act as a companion for families, for the elderly and their families when faced with a problem, including in terms of personal hygiene, nurses as nurse conselor where nurses can give an ideas or opinions to the elderly and to families as implementing nursing care. Nurses provide care to the educational needs of nurses as health education appropriate to the needs of the elderly.

Type of Personal Hygiene

1. Hair Hygiene
2. Oral hygiene
3. Eye hygiene
4. Ear hygiene
5. Nail hygiene
6. Skin hygiene

Factors that can affect Personal Hygiene

There are several factors that affect the personal hygiene of the elderly are:

1. Knowledge factors

According Purwanto (1999) in Friedman (1998), cognitive domains related to intellectual knowledge (ways of thinking, abstract, analyze, solve problems and others). Which includes knowledge, comprehension, application, analysis, synthesis and evaluation. Individuals with knowledge of the importance of personal hygiene will always maintain personal hygiene to prevent the condition / sickness (Notoatmodjo, 1998).

2. Physical and Psychic in the Elderly

The more elderly person, it will decline, especially in the field of physical ability, which can result in decreased social roles. This has resulted in the disruption ends meet. So as to improve the help of others. (Nugroho, 2000).

According to Zainudin (2002) mental deterioration in the elderly could be due to dementia, in which the elderly decline in memory and this can affect the ADL (Activity of Daily Living is a person's ability to look after himself), starting from waking, bathing dressing, and so on.

3. Economic factors

According Geismer and La Sorte (1964) in Friedman (1998), a large family income will affect the ability of families to provide the facilities and the needs required to support life and family survival.

4. Cultural factors

Cultural and personal values ​​affect the ability of hygiene care. One of different cultural backgrounds have different self-care practices. Confidence based culture often determines the definition of health and self-care (Potter and Ferry, 2005).

5. Environmental factors

The environment includes all the physical and psychosocial factors that influence or effect on the lives and survival of the environment influence the ability to improve and maintain functional status, and improve well-being. (Potter and Ferry, 2005)

6. Body Image factor

Body image is a subjective concept of one's physical appearance. Good personal hygiene will affect the individual's body image enhancement. (Stuart & Sundeen, 1999 in Setiadi 2005).

7. Role of Family factors

Families strongly influence health behavior as well as any members of the health status of each individual affect how the function of the family unit and the ability to achieve goals. At the time of family satisfaction goals are met through adequate function, family members are likely to feel positive about themselves and their families (Potter and Ferry, 2005).

Signs of someone lacking Personal Hygiene

  1. Looks dirty / scruffy and untidy.
  2. Body odor.
  3. Hair disheveled, dirty and lots of ticks.
  4. Long and dirty nails.
  5. Sometimes body with skin diseases (fungal, sores, ulcers, etc.).

Personal Hygiene Problems In Elderly

According Siburian (2002) reduced physiological function and health in the elderly, there are several things to note about the cleanliness of the elderly, namely:

  • Bath: the elderly when entering the bathroom should be a strong body by guardians.
  • Oral hygiene: the elderly are not independent, have assisted in cleaning teeth.
  • Wash hair and skin: the skin and hair of the elderly began to dry up. Therefore after bathing necessary smeared with cream skin and hair need to get a hair conditioner. After bathing, hair dried quickly.
  • Nails: when cutting the nails should be careful to avoid injuries in the elderly, especially people with diabetes mellitus more difficult to recover.
  • Clothing: clothing elderly, should be made ​​of soft material, must be kept neat because a lot of elderly people who do not care about the clothes. Colors should be bright but soft clothing, do not wear flashy colors because this is only suitable for young children, do not also selected black, because it gives the impression of sadness.

How to Care Personal Hygiene in the Elderly

a) How to care - hair and head
  • Wash hair with shampoo, regular (min. 2 x / week)
  • Cut and comb hair to make it look neat.

b) How to keep the face and eyes
  • Wash the face at least 3 times daily
  • Clean the eye area from the outside to the inside (clean dirt attached to the corner of the eye lid)
  • When the object possessed eyes, immediately remove using a soft cloth or tissue, do it carefully.
  • When exposed to the eyes of soapy water, wash immediately using clean water, and to avoid rubbing eyes with hands.
  • When riding a motorcycle, use eye glass / glass protector.

c) How to maintain the cleanliness of the ear and nose
  • Clean nose and ears on a regular basis (1-2 weeks / 1 time) do it carefully using a clean and safe tool.

d) How to maintain oral hygiene
  • Brush the teeth after every meal and before bed the right way and regularly
  • Avoid eating / drinking too hot / cold
  • Avoid consumption of acidic foods
  • Many nutritious foods
  • Control to the dentist / health workers routinely.
e) How to maintain the cleanliness of the body
  • Shower using soap regularly at least 2 times a day (more often if necessary to do the work in place when dirty / sweat a lot.
  • Use a clean and tidy clothes (clothes replaced 1 x / hr or when clothes are dirty / wet)
  • When exposed skin fungus, do bathe as usual. Avoid the use of clothing, towels, blankets, soap, and glove together. Avoid using the clothes damp / wet (with sweat / other reasons). Use anti fungal skin medications (if necessary).
f) How to keep hands and feet
  • Clean hands and feet every day at least 2x/hr or dirty.
  • Cut nail 1 x / week or as long visible (use nail cutters and cut the nails after grinded / filed)
  • Use footwear soft, safe, and comfortable.

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