Bedridden patients find it exceedingly inconvenient to carry out day-to-day chores. They feel a dire need to be assisted, and rightly so, being bed-ridden not a pleasant experience. However, with the right kind of assistance, care, love, and support, they can live a healthy and happy lifestyle like all of us. Being bed-bound, either temporarily or permanently, alters everything in their life. Therefore, one needs to be very gentle and cautious with people confined to bed.
A person may be bed-ridden because of many reasons. After a point, people completely bedridden meaning confined to bed for their whole life, start managing themselves on their own with various aids and gadgets. For instance, a person with congenital immobility issues learns to manage themselves gradually with the help of mobility aids and rehabilitation therapies. However, a child or even a full-grown adult may need a caregiver for a few days, weeks, months, or perhaps years, till they are sick in bed.
A Caregiver, aka caretaker, is a person willing to provide care for a patient. There are various kinds of caregivers certified to provide specific care, such as independent caregivers, family caregivers, respite caregivers, to name a few. The most common of all is the family caregiver. A family caregiver is a family member of the patient that cares for them without pay. Unlike a certified nurse, caregivers help the patient with day-to-day activities like bathing, strolling through the park, eating, or using the toilet. Caregivers do not carry out medical care. They are present alongside the patient in an emotional sense. They help the patient feel positive and supported.
For those providing patient care to bedridden elderly family members, it may mean assisting them in almost every big and small day-to-day activity as well as personal hygiene. It is as strenuous as it gets; however, a little reliable information, due diligence, and some tips and tricks can make the process a less consuming one. Many family members turned caregivers to get entangled in questions like how and what they should do to help their loved ones.
Here are seven things one can do to be helpful to your bedridden family member and aid in their recovery.
Good Hygiene and grooming is the first step to feel good about yourself. Personal Hygiene is crucial for bedbound people too. But it might be a tad bit more difficult for them than a normal person. One of the greatest things you can do for any bedridden patient is to help them with their basic hygiene and grooming needs are fulfilled. Proper grooming and hygiene routine include:
They say, looking good helps one feel good. It seems very true. Apart from keeping bedridden people healthy, these things will aid your loved ones keep up their morale and self-esteem.
Bedsores, widely known as pressure ulcers or pressure sores, are injuries and lesions to the skin and other essential tissues due to the excessive pressure on the skin for prolonged periods. The extensive sitting or sleeping puts stress on several body parts such as the hips, thighs, and legs, causing the skin to rupture. The breakdown thus results in ulcers or sores that are painful and extremely uncomfortable. In some graver cases, bedsores are infected by pathogens and aggravate the chances of major complications that may be fatal.
Although they are a serious concern, the prevention of pressure ulcers is quite easy. Consider using the below-mentioned tips:
Changing an adult's diapers is probably the most unconformable job as a caregiver. Howbeit, doing so is a necessity. With the right preparations, you can this arduous task an easier one.
The situation is awkward for both, the patient as well as the caregiver. Make things seem normal to them. It is obvious that the patient is not mobile enough, therefore, you may need some techniques to do the job without injuring them. Changing diapers becomes easier and safer if you are using a hospital bed.
As they say, little things matter, something as trivial as changing bedsheets every so often can make a huge difference. The bedding may get dirty after a few days. Given that the patient spends most of their time in bed, it is essential to keep it clean.
Things to keep in mind while changing bed linens:
Needlessly, the importance of healthy balanced meals is all well-known to us. A person recovering from some surgery is required to eat as much healthy food as possible. Take a great deal of time to plan their meals, consult their doctor or nurse. You can also consult a dietician if need be. They would help you understand what type of foods are the best for them at this point. Additionally, they would also recommend some medical nutritional supplements if required.
A mindful selection of vegetables and fruits is the key. Mostly, a specific vegetable or fruit may not suit the patient during their treatment, owing to the heavy doses of medicines. Thus, understanding which ones are the best for your loved one is essential. Subsequently, not to put the caregiver under the pressure of knowing everything about nutrition, it is a usual practice amongst medical professionals to help the patient with their food.
The surroundings of the patient make a huge difference. It aids their healing process. Ask them often if they feel uncomfortable. Their room is perhaps the most frequented place of all. Keep their room clean and comfortable for them. Here are some other things you may want to do to keep them upbeat.
At times caring for a loved one becomes emotionally draining, and you feel exhausted. In such a scenario, the caregiver often trips themselves into the guilt of not doing enough. Practice patience and empathy not just towards your loved one but yourself too. Keep yourself happy and upbeat to cheer them up. After a certain period, your emotions seem to be all over the place. The best thing to do is not to panic or feel sad about it. Here are a few things you can do to ensure both of your good emotional health.
A caregiver does not possess any medical footing when it comes to providing medical help to the patient. You will require assistance to tackle everyday challenges. Seek help whenever facing a dilemma. You may also want to hire a nurse for some extra help and purchase some bedridden patient care equipment for better care and treatment. However, it depends on the gravity of the situation. Taking care of your loved ones is enriching and satisfying in many ways. It is a noble deed to help a person in dire times like these. Being attentive to their needs and helping to prevent or reduce pain will aid the person in long run.
At HPFY, we believe in providing the best in health and wellness to people. You can choose from a wide range of the best health products for bedridden patients, at amazing prices and discounts.
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Shweta Chaubey, has been a Health Products For You contributor since 2021. An advocate-turned-writer, her desire to create meaningful and positive content has brought her to HPFY and what better than writing ...
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