Taking Care of Bedridden Seniors – A Few Guidelines
When you must assist a bedridden senior, there are many aspects of the patient’s daily life that you must cover. That means that caregiving takes a more complex dimension and it may be more than what you may think at first glance.
Setting up a room for the elderly patient
The place where the patient is going to spend most of his or her time must be appointed in such a manner that all the senior’s needs are taken care of. One thing you should keep in mind is that your loved one must be well ventilated so that the air the patient breathes is as fresh as it can be.
Another thing to remember is that this room should be on the first floor to avoid troubles associated with the use of a wheelchair up and down the stairs. Also, it must not be either too hot or too cold. To ease the patient’s suffering, such measures are essential.
How you are going to appoint the room will play a role in your patient’s wellbeing. For instance, a TV set, books, and magazines should be close enough for the elderly person to enjoy. You may also need some equipment like a wheelchair or a lift. For more information on such items, you can visit Caregivingmag.com.
Proper hygiene is paramount
A bedridden person will need a lot of assistance with grooming and other hygiene aspects. Depending on the patient’s degree of independence, you can assist him or her taking a bath, or you can consider bed baths as the general rule.
It is important not to overlook dental hygiene. In case the patient cannot brush his or her teeth, offer help. This will prevent gum infection and other dental related problems.
Help the patient change his or her clothes every day. Make sure that all the garments these patients use are appropriately cleaned and replaced, to avoid germs and bacteria from starting to become a health issue. Do the same thing with the sheets.
Keep the patient’s nails properly trimmed. As a senior’s skin tends to be dry and prone to infection, long nails can become a source of problems as well, through scratches and other minor accidents. The bedridden senior’s hair should be trimmed regularly and brushed.
What are bedsores and what you should do about them?
As a patient spends a lot of time lying in the same potion for hours, something called bedsores will appear. They are a skin problem, and they manifest as severe skin breakage. The main problem with them is that they can become a gateway for infections while they can be quite painful.
That said, there are things you can do to prevent bedsores. For starters, you should make sure that the patient is moved from one position to another once every few hours. In case the patient is still capable of moving on his or her own, remember your loved one to do so.
Always check the parts of the body that are more prone to bedsores, such as the legs, thighs, buttocks, ankles, and hips. This way, you’ll be able to take measures before they can become a severe issue.