It’s been a few weeks since Doreen and I went to the Baton Rouge Zoo. The days are getting a little shorter now, and I’m thinking of winter coming. Doreen hasn’t been feeling well lately, and as her at home caregiver, I wanted to do something special for her that didn’t require energy on her part.
I brought over my portable stereo and put on a CD that I picked up for her at Music Treasure Chest. “I always loved that Tony Bennett,” Doreen says all the time. I knew he was one of her favorites. I put a warm rice sock on Doreen’s shoulders and turned on the disc.
With the music playing, I went to the kitchen and filled a small tub with warm water. In it, I poured a cap full of lavender eucalyptus foot soak. Gathering the rest of my goodies in a small basket, I was ready to give Doreen the pedicure of the century.
Here’s what you as a home caregiver can use to give your senior a delightful pedicure:
- Two bath towels: one to lay on the floor and one for my lap as I worked on her feet.
- Small glass with rubbing alcohol: I kept the clippers and utensils dipped in the alcohol to keep things sanitary.
- New disposable nail file
- Cuticle cream
- Manicure stick
- Foot file
- Nail brush
- Foot scrub: I like sugar scrub for this, as it dissolves easier and is gentler on aging skin.
- Mint foot cream
- Acetone polish remover
- Nail polish
- Cotton balls
Taking everything back to Doreen’s feet, I got started. I laid the towel on the floor first, then the basin, and gently lowered Doreen’s feet in. We sat quietly for a few minutes, Doreen enjoying the warmth on her shoulders and feet, and myself scratching Bud, her beloved kitty, on the chin. After a few minutes, I first applied cream to her cuticles, then trimmed her nails and filed them neatly. I’m sorry to say they were in bad shape. I never noticed, and I feel badly about it. Once I had trimmed her nails, I pushed her cuticles back gently with a manicure stick, then scrubbed her toenails clean.
Next, I moved the basin out-of-the-way and set her feet on the warm towel in my lap. I scrubbed her heels and other calluses with a foot file, then massaged in foot scrub. After we rinsed that off in the basin,I folded the towel over in my lap and dried her feet. Next came an invigorating mint foot cream. Focusing on the tough and dry spots on her feet, I gave her a nice foot massage.
At this point, Doreen was smiling and very relaxed. As a special treat, I took a little acetone and wiped the cream off of her toenails, and painted her toenails a pretty dark mauve.
After I cleaned up the paraphernalia from the pedicure, I warmed her rice sock again and made a pot of tea. I turned down Tony Bennett and had a nice chat with Doreen. It made me so happy to see her unable to stop peeking at her feet and wiggling her toes with delight. What a treat for both of us!