Bathing and dressing
By learning a few new ways of doing things, most people who have had a stroke can bathe and dress themselves. You may want to try the following:
- Test water temperature with a hand or foot that was not affected by the stroke.
- Use grab bars, a shower seat, a hand-held shower, and a long-handled brush.
- Dress while sitting, starting with the affected side or limb.
- Put on shirts that pull over the head, and pants or skirts with elastic waistbands.
- Use zippers with loops attached to them.
- Visit the hair salon weekly, or change to a "wash and wear" hairstyle to avoid using blow dryers and curling irons.
- Use electric shavers instead of razors to avoid injuries.
- Review grooming with your occupational therapist.
After your stroke, you may not be able to control your bladder and bowels. Nurses will work closely with you to set up a new routine.
- You may be taken to the toilet on a schedule — perhaps every 2 hours to 3 hours. Making a bathroom stop before going out may also work well.
- A time may be set to empty the bowel. This will help train your bladder and bowels to go at specific intervals.
- Absorbent briefs or a condom catheter (a small bag that fits over the penis) may be used.
- You can use adult diapers if you need to.
- Drink fluids (especially caffeine and alcohol) in the daytime and limit them in the evening to avoid having to use the bathroom at night.