After a certain age, elders are much more vulnerable to various illnesses, diseases and infections. As their body is not strong enough to fight back against these diseases, they have to depend on others for care and support.
In many cases, elders are bedridden which makes it even more challenging to look after their daily needs. You must also be aware of other important factors like their physical and mental health while caring for the elderly at home.
So, here are some useful tips that may help you take care of the bedridden elderly at home.
Look after their basic hygiene
Bedridden elders are often unable to get up for simple hygienic tasks like dental care or bathing. Therefore, it is extremely important that you make it easier for them to maintain proper basic hygiene.
If the bedridden elderly can bathe themselves, you can shift them to a shower chair or you could help them with a sponge bath as well. You must also make sure that you regularly trim their fingernails and toenails to avoid unnecessary scratches.
For dental care, you can bring certain items to their bed like toothbrush, a bowl of water and a bowl to spit water. Taking care of these basic hygienic tasks will go a long way in keeping them healthy and happy.
Change their Bedsheets Regularly
Bedridden elders mostly spend a lot of time in their beds. This often leads to the bedsheets getting soiled with food stains, dirt and other skin particles.
So, you need change the bedsheets along with the pillow covers on a regular basis. Changing the bed linens every 2-3 days will again help you maintain good hygiene. Also, make sure that the new set of bedsheets are washed properly before use.
If not changed regularly, dirty bed linens may lead to various skin issues like dark patches, blisters, wrinkles and…
One of the most important ways to take care of bedridden elderly is to constantly check for bed sores. They usually appear when the patient’s body touches the sheets. To avoid these bed sores, you can try using cotton or silk sheets that should be smoothened before use.
Bed sores usually appear on shoulders, buttocks, at the back of the head and even on the feet. For this, try to moisturize their skin regularly and make sure that they stay hydrated throughout the day.
Check for chest-related issues
Since, bedridden elders are lying in bed for long hours, it may lead to unrequired liquid build-up in the lungs. This often causes congestion and sometimes even pneumonia.
For this, you need to ensure that the bedridden elder person is rotated to a new position every 2 hours. In addition to this, make sure to provide them with…
Good and Healthy Nutrition
A nutritious diet is the answer to various health-related issues. So, while elders are bedridden it is important that you provide them with a well-balanced, healthy and nutritious diet.
You can keep a track of the nutrients and calories that are required for the person’s well-being. This will help you to monitor their eating habits and will allow you to keep the doctor informed as well. Also, make sure that you understand the recommended food and diet from the doctors and dieticians.
Take care of the surroundings
Caring for the bedridden elderly is more than just hygiene and nutrition. While elders have no option but to stay in their beds, their immediate environment can have a huge impact on their mental well-being.
So, you need to make sure that you create a healthy and comfortable environment. You can do this my keeping the room well-lit and allow space for fresh air as well as natural sunlight.
You can place a table near their bed so that some of their accessories like water, books, spectacles, etc. are easily accessible.
Talk to them
Yes, that’s right. While caring for the bedridden elderly at home, you need to make sure that you communicate with them regularly. This will allow you to offer them some much-needed emotional support.
You can talk to them about simple things like the weather, their childhood memories and even about their favourite movies or songs. Also, you can try and engage them in some fun activities such as showing them different photographs of family, friends and other memories. This will allow them to stay relaxed and mentally calm.
Taking care of all these things along with caring for the elderly at home can have a huge toll on your mental health too. Things can seem very challenging and you might be left feeling all alone. So, to avoid such situations, you can…
Ask others for help
Things might get really difficult when you have to take care of the bedridden elderly. However, most of the times, your friends and family are ready to help you with it.
You can ask them to visit, so that the bedridden elderly can have regular interactions with different people. Also, you could ask for help from medical professionals and other caregivers.
Caring for the bedridden elderly at home can be a challenging task. But these useful tips might eventually make it a little less difficult for you. Elders often need our emotional support more than anything else.
So, you will be able to take care of them by staying positive, understanding your limitations and taking care of your own mental health.
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