Taking care of nails for seniors or the elderly can be a bit tough, sometimes, especially when you have one or two seniors who constantly need elderly foot care. Although they are lots of persons or establishment that offers elderly foot care services, adopting personal hygiene at home will go a long way to protect and also keep seniors’ nails healthy.
If you’ve ever lived with an older person, you’ll agree with me about how difficult it is for them to bend over to care for their toenails. If they’re able to bend, they might find it difficult to clip their nails as a result of shaking hands. While this is common with the aged, they’re also some health challenges that might cause seniors’ hands to shake.
It is for this reason that adopting the services of a mobile pedicure for the elderly becomes necessary. Home foot care for seniors does not only involve cutting toenails or buffering nails, but it also entails checking for ingrown nails, calluses, fungus, or nail thickening.
Reason Why Seniors Shouldn’t Keep Longer Nails
Have you ever for once thought about what will happen if seniors grow their nails way too long?
1. Nails hurt when too long
As much as we’ve always preached about getting long nails using essential oils when it comes to the elderly, it’s a different sermon entirely. When seniors take to grooming long nails, they tend to get themselves injured at the slightest opportunity.
2. Long nails create room for ingrown nails
Multiple research has shown that keeping long nails is one of the primary causes of ingrown nails for seniors. As the nails push themselves out from the nail matrix and finally lay on the nail bed, they may decide to tuck themselves in around the corners. If the nails are left for some time, the nails may dig deep into the skin of seniors and cause severe pain to them.
3. Long nails create room for injuries
Here is another valid reason why elderly citizens shouldn’t keep long digits. Seniors may injure themselves here and there while trying to scratch or rub their skin with their fingernails. More also, they may hit their toenails accidentally against a hard object, and this might cause a severe health challenge.
4. Long nails harbor disease
It is no longer news that when nails are too long, bacteria might hide underneath them. When these nails get into your senior’s mouth, they may lead to one of these hand-related diseases.
Steps On How To Carryout Pedicures For Senior Citizens
Truth be told, taking and caring for elderly nails isn’t an easy job as many see it and that’s because it does take a little bit of patience coupled with time, but if you are up to the task, then this step-by-step guide will help walk you through the entire processes. So are you ready? Let’s go.
To carry out toenail cutting service for seniors, be sure your hands are washed and that all equipment to be used has been thoroughly sterilized. ( sterilization help destroys all living components from the implements. This can be achieved using various methods such as chemicals, heat, etc.)
Soak his or her nails in warm soapy water for at least 10 minutes.
After which, you now towel dry to remove excess moisture and ready to move on to the next phase.
Gently, walk your hand underneath their toes; while doing this, you can check for signs of dead skin or any damage, after which you can now clean the foot with a callous softener.
Cut or trim nails using a nail clipper. Here’s a Pro tip on toenail trimming. Nails generally (whether that of the finger or toe) should be trimmed across, running from one end to another. Don’t be in haste why at it and also, don’t cut too deep so that you don’t injure them in the process.
If they’re hangnails, trim them off as well, and never cut their cuticles. If you noticed it has overgrown, the best way is to push them back gently. Care must also be taken while pushing their cuticle backward (The best way to go about this is to apply oil on them before pushing).
Apply a small quantity of any essential oil such as olive oil on their foot then massage the oil all over the feet. The purpose of this is to aid the circulation of blood.
After each successful nail care section for seniors, you could recommend for them daily household products to use or probably tell them why they always need to visit a podiatrist for a routine check.
Elderly Foot Care
Foot care for seniors is a basic necessity if they must maintain a healthy lifestyle.
A little touch of care will not only prevent injuries or bacteria, but it will also help keep their nails free from chronic diseases such as diabetes.
Expert Ways One Can Care For Senior’s Feet
1. Buy the right footwear
Seniors should wear footwear that is not too slope or too tight. Tight footwear might cause them to have blisters on their foot and may create room for fungal infection. Wondering how to go about the footwear thing?
Here is a quick tip on how to choose the right fit;
Since our foot is not the same in size, it is a rule of thumb always to use the foot that is a bit bigger to test the shoe you intend to buy. Naturally, the right foot is always bigger than the left, so use that to test the shoe before buying. If they fit comfortably on the right foot, it’s an indication that they are your proper fit. If it doesn’t, you need to do some more testing.
On the occasion that you are not on the ground or available to test those shoes if they’re going to fit, have someone to measure your feet. For example, If your feet measure 40 (size) go for shoes between the range of 41-42 in size.
2. Wear closed-toe shoe
Seniors shouldn’t go about wearing flip-flops all the time. They should wear shoes that rightly cover their entire legs to prevent falls, scrapes, or cuts.
3. Keep toenails short
Longer toenails create room for ingrown nails. Apart from that, when seniors’ toes are kept long, they might injure themselves when their toe come in contact with an object (accident)
So toenails should be trimmed regularly at least once a week. They should be cut straight across like we’ve right said somewhere in this article. Also, care should be taken when trimming their nails to avoid injuring the nail beds in the process.
4. Keep blood flowing
Since old age comes with reduced blood, flowing to some parts of the body, particularly that of the foot, an attempt should be made to keep them intact.
This can be achieved through regular foot massages for older adults, keeping a foot on the footstool while sitting down, and proper toe stretching exercises.
5. Keep the foot dry
Avoid wearing your shoes while your foot is still wet or damp. This does not only keep your toe clean, but it also prevents bacteria buildup since they dwell in wet environments.
6. Go for the right equipment
You should consider taking seniors with circulation problems for a warm foot bath.
There are lots of best foot soak for the elderly you can easily buy if you prefer doing it at home. This not only keeps the foot healthy but also allows blood to flow smoothly.
7. Consult a podiatrist
No matter how much effort you put towards caring for seniors’ nails, it is always recommended to see a podiatrist regularly for foot checkups for your elderly or older citizens.
A regular visit may help the podiatrist ascertain problems like hammertoe or neuromas early and proffer a solution to them.
Foot Care For Diabetic Seniors
Do you know that there’s a staggering number of about 60 % of US citizens who have been diagnosed to have diabetes. Well, no matter the circumstances, caring for the foot is still a necessity for such people. When carrying out nail care for diabetics seniors, care should be taken not to inflict injuries on them because wounds heal very slowly for seniors with diabetes.
It is for this reason that diabetic seniors are advised to adopt a foot care routine that won’t pose a threat to their overall health. In addition to the aforementioned foot care for the elderly above, elderly citizens with diabetes should ;
- Avoid smoking at once.
- Involvement in activities that increase the flow of blood to the foot such as foot stretching exercises.
- Check on their nails daily.
- Wear shoes that are not too tight and with softer leather.
- Avoid walking barefoot.
Over the years, we’ve had a considerable amount of establishments or individuals who specialize in nail care for seniors. Because older citizen needs more care and attention since they’re too old to do almost everything for themselves. For example, seniors who are visually impaired might not be able to care for their nails properly.
More also, not all irregular shapes or colors in nails are signs of a fungal infection. If there are any abnormalities in the senior’s nails, it is recommended to visit a doctor. For seniors with a diabetic condition, nails should be checked regularly if they’re cuts or scrapes on ingrown nails.
Also, they should abstain from wearing shoes that are too tight as this might cause blisters. If you have a senior who is suffering from severe nail abnormalities, you should see a doctor.