Is your elderly loved one currently bedridden?
Here are five tips on how to take care of an elderly loved one who is bedridden at home.
5 tips for taking care of your loved one who is bedridden
Continue to provide good nutrition
Your loved one still needs to be getting a diet that provides them with all the nutrients they need.
A diet that is heavy in proteins, fruits and vegetables is helpful for people who are bedridden.
A bedridden person is prone to losing muscle tone because they are not using their muscles as much in daily movement.
This can result in a loss of muscle tone which further weakens a person.
A diet that is rich in protein, helps to continue to “feed” the muscles so they can regain some of that lost muscle tone.
Fruits and vegetables contain vitamins and minerals that boost the immune system and help wounds heal quickly.
People who are bedridden, are more likely to develop a condition called bed sores. Having the right balance of vitamins and minerals can help lessen the occurrence of these.
Help them perform range of motion exercises
Like I mentioned in the point above, if your loved one is bedridden, they are not moving their muscles around much.
For people who are not bedridden, simple things like taking a walk for 30 minutes a day is enough to keep muscles strong and healthy.
When you don’t use a particular muscle group regularly however, those muscles become weak.
Thus, it is important to help your loved one perform range-of-motion exercises to help keep their muscles healthy.
Bed sores are another common problem that arise from being bedridden.
This happens because there isn’t enough blood supply to a part of your loved one’s body. Wounds then develop – and these wounds can take a long time to heal.
Range of motion exercises gets blood moving to the parts of the body that would otherwise be cut off from blood supply.
Provide bed baths
Cleanliness is important when you’re taking care of a bedridden loved one.
Bed baths prevent bacteria, fungi and viruses from gathering in areas of your loved one’s body and causing havoc.
Change their bedding often
Changing bedding and diapering often is vital when you’re taking care of a loved one who is bedridden.
Because they are in bed all day long, sweat, hair shedding and skin shedding all contribute to sheets becoming dirty quickly.
Thus, it is important to have a plan to change your loved one’s sheets once or twice a week. Or as often as is needed.
You could also lay down absorbent bed pads like these ones, on the area of the bed where your loved one lies the most.
This way, you don’t have to change all the sheets if you’re in a pinch for time. You would just need to change the bed pad.
Nonetheless, changing sheets once or twice per week will keep your loved one comfortable, clean and dry.
If your loved one uses a diaper, changing them frequently will also keep them comfortable and prevent problems like skin break down due to urine or feces staying on them for too long.
Provide entertainment to keep them engaged
Laying in bed all day is boring. It can lead to mental health problems like depression.
Keep your loved one engaged and entertained.
Board games, watching a TV show together, providing them with books and having conversations are all ways to keep your loved one engaged.
While they are aging in place and are bedridden, your loved one can still enjoy a good quality of life.
These 5 tips on how to care for your elderly loved one who is bedridden, will help you achieve that.
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