I try to involve Patti in the only activity of daily living she can really still do reasonably by herself, brush her teeth.
Yes I position her wheelchair in front of her sink, fill her rinse cup, put toothpaste on her tooth brush and hand it to her but too often brain lock or something another would leave it right there.
Ever the showman, I take on a silly accent or song to provide verbal cues.
Sunday night I rolled out some vaudeville while leaning into the sink and singing a modified version of "Heigh Ho!", “We brush, brush … in our mouth the whole day through” .
Whether annoying or entertaining, this produced not only a big smile but more importantly brushing!
Next handing Patti her rinse cup, I leaned in and boomed out in a operatic voice, “We rinse, rinse …”.
Patti exploded in laughter spitting toothpaste and rinse water all over me.
This in turn triggered absolute hysterical laughter!
I believe I have never seen anyone have more fun brushing their teeth (and bringing out the hook on my performance :) ).
Later she was still laughing. It was like transferring a bowl of jello into bed.