If you are a family caregiver to an older relative, one of your main duties is helping them wash their body and hair and get ready for the day. While it seems easy enough, you might actually be doing some harm to their hair because you are treating it like your own. However, senior hair is unique and requires a different approach to keep it healthy and looking good.
Here are 5 things you may be doing that harm your elderly loved one’s hair without even knowing it:
1. Brushing Too Hard
Senior hair can become quite brittle and it falls out more easily than when they were younger. This means that vigorous brushing can actually cause more harm than good. Instead of using a bristled brush, try a wide-tooth comb to save as much hair from breaking as possible.
2. Using the Wrong Shampoo
There are dozens of types of shampoo, all geared for different hair types. If you are using just any old shampoo for your elderly loved one, their hair may look flat and lifeless because the product is too heavy. Opt for a shampoo specifically formulated for senior hair, a daily clarifying shampoo or even baby shampoo to keep it clean but not coated in unnecessary add-ins.
3. Washing in Hot Water
For most people, hot water in the shower or bath equals relaxation, but hot water can really damage elderly people’s hair. When exposed to hot water over long periods of time, elderly hair can dry out and become brittle. Choose to wash their hair in lukewarm water for best results.
4. Washing Every Day
Did you know that seniors don’t really need to have their hair washed every day? It’s true. The scalp and hair follicles produce oil to keep hair from drying out. With age, not as much oil is produced daily. Skipping days for washing hair actually promotes oil production and helps elderly hair stay healthier.
5. Using Hot Irons
While curling irons do make long-lasting curls for women’s hair, the heat and stress on elderly hair can really cause a lot of damage. Use the gentlest setting possible and don’t leave the hair wrapped in the device for too long. Many seniors find success with the bristle curling irons that shape the hair without clamping it in between hot metal of a traditional curling iron. Keeping the hairstyle shorter will make the hair look fuller and may even eliminate the need for a hot iron.
Nice hair gives elderly people a lot of confidence about their looks, so make sure you are doing everything possible to keep it healthy and strong. If you have help from family members and home care aides in getting your loved one’s hair ready, make sure you pass on any information as well. If you aren’t sure about whether or not the products or tools you are using for your elderly loved one’s hair care are right, just contact a local stylist that specializes in mature hair and work with them to address your loved one’s unique head of hair.
IF YOU OR AN AGING LOVED ONE ARE CONSIDERING IN-HOME CARE IN LAS VEGAS, NV, PLEASE CONTACT THE CARING STAFF AT GOLDEN HEART SENIOR CARE. CALL TODAY 702-800-4616.