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a. General. A patient's hair should be combed daily. In addition, other care is necessary to enhance morale, stimulate circulation of the scalp, and prevent tangled, matted hair.

b. Daily Care. Encourage the patient to rub his scalp with fingertips to stimulate circulation. Comb hair in a becoming style. To assist a patient to comb matted and tangled hair, first comb the ends and progress toward the scalp. Hold the lock of hair being combed between the scalp and the comb to avoid pulling. Brush the hair as necessary (figure 1-14).

 Figure 1-14. Care of patient's hair.

c. Hair Cutting. Barber service is provided in most service hospitals. The barber makes regular rounds on the nursing unit or comes by appointment. The patient receiving the service pays the fee directly to the barber. Occasionally, hairdresser service can be arranged for patients on the unit. Ambulatory patients go to the barber shop or beauty parlor, if the physician approves.

d. Shampoo. The patient confined to bed will require a cleansing shampoo at least every two weeks. With the approval of the medical officer, plan the shampoo for a time when the patient feels rested and has no conflicting treatments or appointments. If the patient can be moved to a stretcher, do so and take him to a convenient sink. If this is not possible, do the shampoo in bed.

(1) Following is a list of equipment necessary for the procedure.

(a) Large pitcher of warm water.

(b) Bucket.

(c) Newspaper.

(d) Large rubber sheet.

(e) Bath towels (3).

(f) Washcloth.

(g) Shampoo solution.

(h) Clean comb and brush.

(2) Following is the procedure for administering a shampoo to a patient in bed.

 (a) Place a newspaper on the chair and the bucket on the newspaper. Place the pitcher of water, shampoo, comb, brush, and one of the two bath towels on the bedside cabinet.

(b) Move the patient to the near side of the bed. Lower the bed to a level position.

(c) Pull the pillow down under the patient's shoulders to assisting extending the neck. Fold one bath towel around the neck

(d) Place the narrow side of the rubber sheet under his head and over the edge of the pillow. Roll the sides of the sheet to improvise a trough, and place the free end in the bucket.

(e) Give the patient a washcloth for his eyes and face.

(f) Check provisions for water drainage before pouring any water.

(g) Wet his hair and apply shampoo. Lather and rinse it.

(h) Reapply shampoo and rinse the hair again repeatedly until his hair is "squeaky clean." (A woman will require more rinse water than a man, but otherwise the procedure is unchanged.)

(i) Slip a dry towel under the patient's bed. Then roll and remove the rubber sheet. Pull the pillow up into its normal place.

(j) Dry the hair by gently rubbing it with a clean towel.

(k) Remove the equipment and wipe up any water spilled on the floor.

(l) Assist the patient to comb and brush his hair with a clean comb and brush. 


David L. Heiserman, Editor

Copyright   SweetHaven Publishing Services
All Rights Reserved

Revised: June 06, 2015