Here are three steps to healthy senior skin, especially for those with incontinence. Taking good care of your skin is important at any age, but over the years skin becomes thinner, less elastic, and more prone to injury and infection. For seniors managing incontinence, it’s even more important to keep skin clean, moisturized and protected to prevent irritation.
- A gentle yet effective cleansing routine.
Because frequent cleansing is an important part of managing incontinence, it’s important to choose gentle products made to avoid skin breakdown and odor. The most effective routine includes a mild cleanser after elimination occurs, thorough rinse if product requires, and gentle patting with a clean, dry towel. Cleansing options include soothing lotions and foams, antimicrobial products and convenient no-rinse cleansers.
- Skin moisture replenished daily.
Frequent cleaning can cause dryness and irritation, and cracked or chafed skin can let in infection-causing bacteria, especially if exposed to urine or stool. After cleansing, skin should be replenished with moisturizers formulated to help manage incontinence, such as alcohol-free, protein-rich ingredients that absorb quickly.
- Protecting and treating damaged skin.
Once skin is cleaned and moisturized, it’s important to protect it from moisture caused by urine and perspiration. After each elimination, skin should be cleansed, dried and treated with a protecting yet breathable moisture barrier. Other solutions for problem skin include antifungal ointments and powders to treat yeast infections.
Lantiseptic is a line of skin care products made for those managing incontinence. Daily Care Cleansing Foam is a no-rinse, pH-balanced cleanser that deodorizes and moisturizes, and Daily Care Skin Protectant serves as a barrier against chafing and other skin problems. In addition to following the three steps to proper skin care, choose skin-friendly incontinence products. Today’s pads, shields, adult diapers and disposable underwear are made with skin-friendly features, combining breathable materials with advanced absorbency.
(This article by Dianna Malkowski, Physician Assistant & Nutritionist, originally appeared on the CareGiver Partnership blog.)
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