Dementia Care: Bathing

Dementia Care: Bathing 

The purpose of this course is to familiarize the learner with age and dementia related changes that affect the bathing process. Strategies for alleviating behaviors of distress associated with bathing are discussed. Tactics for promoting independence and ways to engage the person being cared for in the bathing process are provided. Tips for keeping caregivers and the people being cared for safe during bathing are reviewed.

The content in this course is applicable to caregivers and nursing aides in the community care environment (Home Care, Assisted Living, Residential Care for the Elderly, Group Homes).


Hours: 1.00


Certificates provided by accrediting body (0 Match)

Course Details

Course Code: REL-PAC-0-DCB
Hours: 1
Type: Online Course
Content Expiration Date: 8/30/2023
Learning Objectives:
Discuss the role of fear in behaviors of distress associated with bathing.
List ways you can prepare to bathe a person that will minimize behaviors of distress.
Explain ways to prevent or diffuse behaviors of distress.
Discuss methods for manage bathing behaviors.


Section 1: Introduction

About This Course

Learning Objectives

Section 2: Preparing to Bathe

Aging Changes

Dementia and Alzheimer’s

Bathing Alternatives

Personal Preferences

Offer Choices

Gather Supplies

Water Temperature

Shower Head Pressure

Hard to Reach Spots

Pain and Anxiety


Section 3: The Role of Fear

Impact of Fear

Loss of Balance and Flexibility

Feeling Exposed


Feeling Cold


Section 4: Bath Tubs

Using Bath Tubs

Prefill the Bath Tub

Physical Strength



Section 5: Promoting Independence

Step-by-Step Instructions

Coaching Through the Steps


Hygiene Supplies


Section 6: Diffusing Behaviors of Distress






Early Stage Dementia

Middle Stage Dementia

Late Stage Dementia


Section 7: Managing Agitation and Bathing Behaviors



5 Senses: Touch

5 Senses: Sight

5 Senses: Smell

5 Senses: Hearing

5 Senses: Taste


Physical Aggression

Sexual Inappropriateness


Section 8: Conclusion


Course Contributor


Staff Writer: Holly Carlson, MS, RN, CCRN
Holly Carlson, MS, RN, CCRN, was a subject matter expert for Relias. She has 25 years of healthcare experience in both acute and post-acute healthcare environments. Her experience includes leadership and management across the healthcare spectrum. She has owned and operated an assisted living business. Carlson's clinical practice includes acute care, long-term acute care, home health and hospice. Carlson has served for over a decade in various board positions for State Nursing Associations, including president. She has been a nurse planner for multiple continuing education events and has experience as a leader in the design and implementation of an ANCC-CNE accredited approver unit for a multi-state nursing consortium. Carlson is certified as Critical Care Registered Nurse.    Disclosure: Holly Carlson, MS, RN, CCRN has declared that no conflict of interest, Relevant Financial Relationship or Relevant Non-Financial Relationship exists.
Relias will be transparent in disclosing if any commercial support, sponsorship or co-providership is present prior to the learner completing the course.
Course Delivery Method and Format
Asynchronous/Online Distance Learning; please see certificate details for specifics on delivery format.
Relias has a grievance policy in place to facilitate reports of dissatisfaction. Relias will make every effort to resolve each grievance in a mutually satisfactory manner. In order to report a complaint or grievance please contact Relias.
If you require special accommodations to complete this module, please contact Relias Support by completing the web form ( or by using the chat functionality.
All courses offered by Relias, LLC are developed from a foundation of diversity, inclusiveness, and a multicultural perspective. Knowledge, values and awareness related to cultural competency are infused throughout the course content.
Reference herein to any specific commercial product, process, or service by trade name, trademark, service mark, manufacturer or otherwise does not constitute or imply any endorsement, recommendation, or favoring of, or affiliation with, Relias, LLC.
All characteristics and organizations referenced in the following training are fictional. Any resemblance to any actual organizations or persons living or dead, is purely coincidental.
To earn continuing education credit for this course you must achieve a passing score of 80% on the post-test and complete the course evaluation.
If you require special accommodations to complete this module, please contact Relias Customer Support here.