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Assisting individuals to dress in nursing

Assisting individuals to dress in nursing
Dressing allows the client to maintain their individuality, self-image and self-esteem besides providing protection. It is an important vehicle for communicating one’s personality, values, beliefs and culture in society, as well as one’s gender. Nurses can assist clients in this activity by encouraging them to make choices and decisions about their personal dress and assisting them in this activity when they are unable to self-care.

Dressing best takes place following washing or bathing though clothes should always be changed when soiled, to promote the client’s dignity. Clothes worn during waking hours should not be worn for sleeping as one can lose up to one litre of sweat during the night and this can increase significantly in illness.

When dressing the client in clothing of their choosing bear in mind that the clothes should be in keeping with the environment, the general condition of the client and the time of day. Also consider their ease of removal and application and the need for access, for example intravenous cannulation, catheters and drains.

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