How to Change Bed Sheets with Somebody In Them

Give a Care Expert Caregiving Tips

Much of what has come in handy as a caregiver for my mother who is 100% disabled (no use of any of her limbs) I have learned from the certified nursing aides or nurses who cared for her during her hospital stays. One of the best ah-ha moments came when I learned how to change soiled sheets with Mom still lying in the bed.

In the past, I had always struggled with getting her cleaned up, off the bed onto the commode, watching her to make sure she didn’t fall over while furiously ripping sheets off and changing them as fast as possible to then lift her up again to put her back on the bed. What a hassle for me AND for her!

When I learned to change sheets with her IN the bed, it was life-changing. So here goes:

  1. Assess the situation – if sheets are soiled, assess what you are dealing with. Is it just pee or was there a bowel movement too? This will help you figure out how much clean-up needs to happen before you change sheets.
  2. Clean up your loved one first – because I am standing to the left side of Mom’s bed (as I’m facing her and the head of the bed), I roll Mom to her left side to clean her up first and remove her adult diaper.
  3. Pull the two bottom corners of the bed sheets up and tuck them up under your loved one’s feet.
  4. Pull the top left corner of the bed sheet off and essentially roll the entire side up and under your loved one who is still turned on their side.
  5. Get a new sheet and go ahead and put it on the two bottom corners and top left corner, roll up excess corner under the soiled sheets making sure to avoid contact with any of the wet parts of the dirty sheet,
  6. Roll your loved one back to their right over the rolled up sides of the other sheets and finish taking off the old sheet.
  7. Finishing putting the new sheet on by covering the last corner at the top right.
  8. Finish cleaning your loved one and roll them back onto their back. Set them up with a new diaper and pillows per usual.

Keep in mind, we use a mattress protector that goes on like a fitted sheet under Mom’s normal fitted sheet so we actually replace both at once. We also use under pads under Mom’s bottom when she is in bed to prevent sheets from getting soiled in the first place so if you do too, you will want to roll that up and slip under her with the new sheets as well when changing.

I want to accompany images with this post or a video to better explain the process, so please know that is in the works! Until then, this video is the best one I could find on Youtube – hope it helps!

Thanks for checking out this Give a Care expert family caregiving tip!

2 thoughts on “How to Change Bed Sheets with Somebody In Them

  1. Hi ,
    Loved this post How to Change Bed Sheets with Somebody In Them . Sharing it on my Facebook and Pinterest profile.

  2. Hi ,
    Loved this post How to Change Bed Sheets with Somebody In Them . Sharing it on my Facebook and Pinterest profile.

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