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"Post-death Care at Home" Video Series

"A picture is worth a thousand words."   Although attitudes are changing, we still live in a 'death taboo' culture.   Most of us are not aware that we have the legal right to care for our own dead at home, without using the services of a funeral home.   Whether or not we know about our rights post-death, the cultural taboo still tends to leave an 'ick ' factor, due to the assumption that caring for a dead body would be significantly different than caring for it the moment before death.    However, even if the 'ick ' factor is not an issue, there is still the question '...but how? '.

Note: We suggest that you watch these videos in full-screen mode.   Click on the box-corners icon at the bottom right of each video — and then press the red "Play" button once you get into full-screen mode.   [If you don't see the box-corners, move your mouse-cursor to the bottom right of the video.]   To return to the website page, press the "Esc" or "Escape" button, which will probably be at the far top left of your keyboard.

Written instructions (PDF) for Post-death Care at Home (including a list of supplies), and General Timeline (what to do when) are also available on this site; and are intended to companion the videos with more in-depth information.   Shroud patterns (with graphic and written instructions) — 2 unsewn, and 4 sewn variations — are also available.

We hope that the following videos, and the accompanying instructional PDFs, will help clarify how to care for a dead body — and most of the supplies needed would be things you already have at home.
   If you have any further questions or concerns, please feel free to contact us.

You can also see all of the videos at CINDEA's YouTube channel


Part 1 — Moving the Body

This video shows the procedure for six women to move a 6'2" man's (dead) body across a room and through a doorway, carrying him on a large sheet.


Part 2 — Washing the Head, Face, and Mouth

This video shows the procedure for washing the hair and face, as well as cleaning the teeth and mouth.


Part 3 — Washing the Body

This video shows the procedure for washing the hair and face, as well as cleaning the teeth and mouth. Use if you can't access from above.



Part 4 — Dressing the Body

This video shows the procedure for dressing the body (in this case, with pants and shirt) — as well as how to set the eyes and mouth so that they remain shut.

Part 5 — Final Preparations

Option 1: Moving the body into the casket

This part of the video shows the procedure to move the body into the casket — using the same simple single-sheet technique as in Part 1 (Moving the Body).

Option 2: Shrouding the body

This part of the video shows the procedure to shroud the body in the simplest form of shroud — using a large (queen or king sized) sheet and 4 ties.    

There are 6 shroud patterns available on CINDEA 's 'Post-death Care and Home Funerals' page under the Shroud Patterns section.   The patterns include 2 unsewn ones (including the one demonstrated here) and 4 different sewn ones — with both written and graphic instructions — approved for use in at least some 'green burials'.

Last updated July 2015   © CINDEA  (To use more than a brief extract, please contact us for permission.)