Recognizing, Treating and Preventing Pressure Ulcers in Elderly 

Pressure ulcers in elderly are more common than you think. It is the most common type of wound observed by home care providers. It is also one of the conditions that limit a person’s mobility. In fact, an estimate of 1 to 3 million Americans is affected by pressure ulcers in a year.

These ulcers should not be taken lightly. For one, they are painful and worrisome. Here’s a more cause for concern: when left untreated, pressure ulcers can lead to complications which may lead to death.

A key to preventing and treating pressure ulcers is developing a deeper understanding of it. Identifying and recognizing pressure ulcers as early as possible can be a life-saver. With this in mind, we have made a list of the important things you need to know about pressure ulcers in seniors.

What is pressure ulcer: Recognizing and identifying it

Pressure ulcer, which is also medically known as decubitus ulcer, is an injury to the skin which affects the underlying tissue as well due to prolonged pressure. It is mostly common, and especially troublesome, in the bony areas.

Seniors who use wheelchairs can develop ulcers on the areas that come in contact with the wheelchair. These areas include the buttocks, spine, shoulder blades, and the back of the legs and arms. Bedsores in the elderly are also common. This is especially true for seniors who are already bedridden. The sores often affect the hips, lower back, shoulder blades, sides of the head, back of the head, ankles, and heels.

Elderly patients with limited mobility are prone to pressure sores, which when left untreated, can become chronic and long-lasting. Hence, before pressure sores become life-threatening, it is important that family members, caregivers, and the patient themselves develop a plan of identifying, preventing, and treating sores.

Signs, Symptoms, and Stages of Pressure Ulcers

Pressure ulcer symptoms are easy to spot. Before the sores appear, here are the early warning signs you should watch out for: swelling, tenderness, pus-like drainage, and change in skin color. The skin also feels cooler or warmer to the touch.

To better understand pressure ulcer, here are the four stages or grades that you must be aware of:

 Stage 1 Pressure Ulcer

During the stage, the skin starts to get inflamed but remains unbroken. Inflammation is usually associated with redness, hardness, oedema, induration, and discoloration. 

Stage 2 Pressure Ulcer

Here, the first two layers of the skin, epidermis and dermis, are broken. These are easy to spot, as they give an appearance of blister or abrasion.

Stage 3 Pressure Ulcer

In this stage, there is already full-thickness skin loss. The subcutaneous tissue is damaged and the underlying fascia may even be affected.

Stage 4 Pressure Ulcer

This is the most serious stage. The sore now extends below the subcutaneous fat, affecting deep tissues such as ligaments, muscles, and tendons, and down to the cartilage or bone in more severe cases. There is high risk for infection.

Understanding pressure ulcers causes and risk factors are important in its prevention. These include the following:

  • Peripheral vascular disease and diabetes
  • Lack of mobility
  • Poor hydration and poor nutrition
  • Lack of sensory perception

Pressure Ulcer Prevention: 7 ways

Now that you know the signs and causes of pressure ulcers, here are some tips on how you can prevent it.

  1. Shift position at least once every two hours. If the elderly is bedridden, move him or her from one sleeping position to another. It helps to put pillows and other support to help the patient stay in the best position to prevent pressure ulcers. For those who are often sitting on a chair, it helps to switch positions and take breaks.
  2. Encourage exercise. Even those who have limited mobility can do this. Exercising does not have to involve moving about or walking. Simply moving the legs and arms can already encourage blood flow and alleviate or even prevent pressure sores.
  3. Keep the skin moisturized, clean, and dry. When cleaning the skin, it is encouraged that you use mild soap, cloth, or soft sponge. Don’t rub the skin to prevent irritation. Just pat the skin dry. It also helps to apply skin moisturizers.
  4. Proper hydration and nutrition. Keep the skin healthy by making sure that the senior is eating healthy foods and drinking enough water.
  5. Wear comfortable clothing. Comfort is the key. Avoid wearing too tight clothing or clothing with buttons and zippers.
  6. Use pillows as support when sleeping. Pillows serve as a comfortable barrier between areas of the body that may touch with each other, like heels, ankles, and knees
  7. Use pressure-relieving support. These include mattresses and cushions that are made with a special gel or foam, and mattresses or overlays with alternating pressure systems.

Conclusion

Pressure ulcers can be prevented and managed. Just make sure that you watch out for any warning signs and risk factors. Take measures to prevent it as well in order to improve the quality of life of the elderly.

 

 

 

Tips on Maintaining Elderly Health: Living and Eating Healthy

As we age, we undergo a lot of changes. It is not only our  body that changes, so do the circumstances surrounding us—children leaving and off to start a family of their own, loss of friends and loved ones, retirement, and declining health, among others. However, aging does not mean that we should no longer take care of ourselves. There are secrets to keeping a great elderly health.

Eating healthy and living a healthy lifestyle are important especially in old age. Knowing its importance, we decided to share with you some essential health tips for seniors.

The importance of balanced diet for the elderly

Part of aging is a change in the body. As we age, our diet also changes. Our metabolism decreases, the taste and smell are altered, and the digestive process becomes slower. These affect how the body will process the food we intake. Thus, these healthy eating tips for seniors can be a life-saver.

As a rule, seniors must avoid saturated fat, refined carbs and sugary foods. They need to eat more foods that are loaded with essential nutrients. These foods include vegetables, whole grains, and high-fiber fruits.

The following are essential nutrients that seniors need the most: proteins, healthy fats, carbohydrates, water, minerals, and vitamins. Aside from eating nutritious foods, seniors must also take plenty of water and other fluids. All these are important in maintaining a balanced and healthy diet.

Seniors are more at risk for various health conditions, including heart diseases, memory problems, strokes, high cholesterol, hypertension, diabetes, vascular disease, visual problems, osteoporosis, and certain cancers. All these conditions are caused or impacted by unhealthy diet. Thus, the elderly need to take care of their health more seriously.

Proper diet is only about what to eat and what not to eat. It is also about how much to eat. Here’s a rule of thumb: everything must be taken in moderation. Eating large portions, even of healthy foods, can still be bad for you due to high caloric intake. Speaking of calories, avoid “empty calories,” which are foods that are high in calories but don’t have nutritious benefits. These include donuts, cookies, sodas, and chips.

For certain health conditions, there are special dietary restrictions imposed. For instance, those who have kidney disease or heart problems are not allowed to eat salty foods. Seniors with diabetes are also required to limit their carbohydrate and sugar intake.

Exercise for seniors: Why is it important

Living healthy is not only about eating healthy. Another important component is exercise. Studies show that exercise is an important factor to a healthier and longer life. There are lots of benefits of exercise, especially to seniors. It improves sleep, maintains and improves agility and strength, boosts mental health, and increases vitality. It helps prevent cognitive decline, memory loss, and dementia as well.

If you pair a balanced diet with regular exercise and physical activity, you prevent or manage certain health problems. These health issues include heart disease, stroke, certain cancers, muscle weakness, diabetes, high cholesterol, osteoporosis, and even depression.

Here a summary of health benefits of exercising for seniors:

  • Keeping the bones and muscles healthy.
  • Optimizing respiratory and cardiovascular health.
  • Improving physical endurance.
  • Burning excess calories and bad cholesterol.
  • Maintaining a healthy weight.
  • Enhancing overall mood.
  • Improving sleep duration and quality.
  • Reducing risks for fall.
  • Efficiently delivering nutrients and oxygen to the tissues.

However, not all exercises are recommended for the elderly. The key is effective exercising. Some of the safe exercises for seniors are walking, balance exercises, resistance exercises, flexibility exercises, and exercise machines. Recommended exercise for seniors is 3-5 times a week, for around 30 minutes each session.

Stop exercising if you are not feeling well, especially if you experience any of these symptoms: fainting, dizziness, shortness of breath, tightness or chest pain. Raise these concerns to your physician.

Sleep in the elderly: What is normal

Sleep quality is important for the seniors. The problem is, many older adults develop sleep problems and require senior care specialist assistance to manage them. These problems include daytime sleepiness, insomnia, and frequent night-time waking.

If you have sleep problems, it is important that you develop a healthy sleep habit and make your room as sleep-inducing as possible. Keep your bedroom quiet, cool, dark, and comfortable. Avoid artificial light and don’t use a gadget at least an hour before sleeping. It also helps if you stay active during the day. Since we all have different sleeping habits, develop a bedtime ritual of your own, like playing music or taking a bath before bed.

Conclusion

Old age affects the physical, mental, social, sexual, and emotional aspects of our lives. We naturally “decline” with age. However, we can take proactive steps to stay as healthy as we can. Sleep well, regularly exercise, eat healthy, and live life to the fullest.

 

 

 

 

 

Causes, Effects, and Symptoms of Dehydration in Elderly

Everybody needs water. We are often told to drink plenty of water a day to prevent dehydration and its effects. While dehydration can affect anyone, its risk is higher in older adults. This is why it is important to know the tell-tale signs and symptoms of dehydration in elderly. Spotting the signs at the onset is crucial in preventing the adverse effects of dehydration, especially among seniors.

Why is drinking enough fluids important? Aside from the fact that no one can survive without water, drinking sufficient amounts of water and fluids help eliminate waste and toxins, digest food better, regulate temperature, maintain one’s blood pressure, and other healthy functions.

Elderly and dehydration

The elderly are more susceptible to various health conditions compared to younger individuals. They have higher risks for dehydration as well. This is due to several factors associated with aging:

  • Decreased total body fluid.When people age, the amount of water reserves in their body also begin to decline With less body fluid, they are more prone to dehydration.
  • Weaker thirst response. We drink water because we are thirsty. Thirst is our body’s way of reminding us to drink water. The problem is, one’s thirst response weakens with age. Hence, older adults don’t often feel thirsty as they should be.
  • Decreased kidney function. As with other parts of the body, the kidney doesn’t function as healthy as when we were younger. It declines as we age. This results in loss of water during urination.
  • Health conditions and taking certain medications. Water loss may be a side effect of certain medications. Dehydration may also be triggered by other underlying health conditions affecting the elderly.

 Causes of dehydration in elderly

Understanding what causes and triggers dehydration in older adults is important. Knowing these causes can help you prevent dehydration. The common causes include the following:

  • Exposure to humid conditions and hot temperature can lead to excessive sweating, which can result in increased fluid and water loss in the body.
  • Fever, diarrhea, vomiting, and other illness may also cause dehydration.
  • Mobility problem, which is common among seniors, can also result in decreased water intake. This happens when seniors have difficulty getting water by themselves.
  • Underlying health conditions like kidney disease and diabetes can also cause dehydration.
  • Certain medications can cause increased urination as a side effect. This leads to increased fluid loss, which when not prevented, can result in dehydration.

Side Effects and Symptoms of Dehydration in Seniors

Dehydration in the elderly should not be taken lightly. It can lead to serious consequences, which can result in frequent hospitalization and health complications. Even in cases of mild dehydration, the senior can still be seriously affected. Mild dehydration is associated with lack of concentration and attention, reduced reaction response, and memory impairment.

Dehydration can cause fatigue and exhaustion as well, which increases the senior’s risk of falls. Additionally, dehydration can cause itchy skin, dry skin, pressure sores, and other skin problems. It has been linked to the increased mortality rate among seniors with stroke. It affects kidney functioning, which when left untreated, can result in serious kidney problems.

Other effects, symptoms, and signs of dehydration in elderly include:

  • Constipation
  • Dizziness
  • Dry mouth
  • Muscle cramps
  • Darker urine
  • Less urination
  • Sunken eyes

In severe and more serious causes, dehydration can cause:

  • Confusion
  • Difficulty moving and walking
  • Rapid heart rate

Preventing dehydration

Now that you know the symptoms and effects of dehydration, it is easier for you to prevent it. The key is to stay hydrated. These are some tips you can follow in order to prevent dehydration:

  • Drink as much water as you can throughout the day. Take small sips if you find it hard to gulp down too much water. Don’t wait for you to get thirsty. Other fluids like fruit juices, flavored water, and low-sugar milk are also great for hydration. Don’t drink too much tea and coffee. 
  • Eat foods with high water content. These include watermelon, strawberries, cucumber, and celery.
  • Put lime or lemon on your water if you are not fond of drinking pure water.
  • Drink more water than usual when you go exercising or you go out in hot weather or humid conditions.
  • Hire a caregiver that will provide personal care services for the person you love.

If you are taking care of a senior, see to it that they drink plenty of water in a day. Here are what you can do:

  •  Place water within easy reach from the senior.
  • Constantly remind the senior to hydrate.

 

Knowing and understanding the dehydration effects, signs, symptoms, and causes are essential in its prevention and treatment. The key is to replace the lost fluids. Keep hydrated throughout the day. Drink plenty of water and other nutritious liquids, and incorporate foods with higher water content in your daily diet.  

Mental Health and the Elderly: Understanding and Dealing with the Issue

Mental health is a common concern among older adults. In fact, it is more common than you think. The problem is, people tend to dismiss the problem. Understanding the correlation between mental health and the elderly is important in order to deal with the issue.

It shouldn’t be merely dismissed since mental health issues can also affect the overall well-being of the person, which can result in the deterioration of physical health, especially when compounded with chronic diseases common to the elderly.

Mental illnesses in the elderly: Why are they not often addressed?

While mental health is common among older adults, it is often not addressed. This is partly because the signs may appear subtle, or that the symptoms are often just attributed to other non-mental health conditions associated with aging.

Older adults also have the tendency to keep the symptoms to themselves. They don’t go complaining about their mental issues. This may be due to the stigma often attached to mental illness.

That is why, if you are taking care of an elderly, it is important that you have a basic understanding of mental health among seniors and older adults.

 Health issues common to the elderly

The elderly are more inclined to report physical health problems than mental or psychological ones. This makes diagnosing and, more so, treating the senior’s health problem quite challenging. Since mental illness may be triggered by physical stress and certain conditions, it is important to know what these are.

These possible triggers include:

  • Chronic illness
  • Chronic pain
  •  Physical disability
  • Physical impairment affecting memory, thought, and emotion
  • Solitude and loneliness
  •  Major life changes

Signs of Mental Illness in the Elderly: What to watch out for

We often associate forgetfulness with aging. However, forgetfulness is not the same as memory loss, anxiety, depression, and other cognitive problems. Often, these are signs of a far serious mental issue.

Since most elderly won’t likely tell you if they experience the early signs and symptoms, it is important that you keep an eye on them yourself, whether you have an elderly family member or you are a caregiver. The warning signs that you should watch out for in mental health of older adults are:

  • Persistent depressive and suicidal thoughts, feeling of immense sadness and hopelessness.
  • Trouble sleeping or staying asleep, or the opposite, which is too much sleeping.
  • Change in mood, energy level, or appetite.
  • Having difficulty feeling positive emotions.

Common mental health illnesses among seniors

To have a better understanding and to efficiently deal with the issue, here are the mental health illnesses common in older adults and seniors:

  1. Depression

The most common mental health concern among the elderly is depression. This type of mood disorder affects older women more than older men. If left untreated, it can impede social functioning and can lead to other mental and physical impairments. Depression can even interfere with and worsen the senior’s chronic health problems.

The common symptoms include:

  • Persistent sadness
  • Problems sleeping
  • Physical discomfort or pain
  • Distancing from things you previously normally enjoy
  • General feeling of “slowing down”

It’s also important to know the risk factors as well for late-onset depression. These are:

  • Widowhood
  •  Physical illness
  • Drinking problems
  • Diminished “functional” status
  • Lack of education

Hence, if you noticed any of the signs and symptoms of depression in your loved one or client, immediately seek professional help.

  1. Anxiety Disorders

Another common illness is anxiety disorder. Statistics tell us that anxiety disorders are associated with depression. These are the risk factors to watch out for:

  • Sleeping problems
  • Poor health
  • Stressful or traumatic event
  • Side effects of certain medications
  • Physical impairments
  • Alcoholic and drug abuse
  • Chronic conditions like diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, and thyroid problems
  1. Bipolar disorders

Bipolar disorders are marked by sudden and irregular mood shifts. The problem is that these are often misdiagnosed among older adults because some of its symptoms are also common in aging.

Here are symptoms of late-onset bipolar disorder you should watch out for:

  • Agitation
  • Confusion
  • Hyperactivity
  • Irritability
  • Psychosis
  1. Eating disorder

Eating disorders are now becoming prevalent among seniors. These disorders may include anorexia nervosa or bulimia, which are often undetected among older adults. This is why it’s important to know what signs to watch for, which are:

  • Weight loss
  • Muscle weakness and anemia
  • Loss of appetite
  • Slow healing
  • Chronic dizziness
  • Memory deficits and cognitive decline
  • Decreased food intake

 

With all these mental concerns and psychological problems in old age, it is important to watch out for any signs that may be crucial in the early detection and treatment of the illness. Keep an eye on your client or loved one, and be ready to seek the necessary professional home care help when needed.

Signs Your Aging Parent Needs Help: Identifying Them and Taking Action

Your parents have taken care of you all your life, and now you’re thinking, “I need help with my aging parent.” They’ve probably even helped you during your young adult years. As they age, the tables begin to turn, and it may be time to start caring for elderly parents.

 

In the beginning, the field of senior care services is unknown territory. With no one to guide you, it can be difficult to know where to look for help. Many adult children quickly feel like they’re out of their leagues.

 

It’s common for concerned family members to have trouble navigating senior care services. When it affects your parents, you need insight and guidance when you see signs that your aging parent needs help.

 

How to Identify That My Older Parents Need Help

 

Aging slows people down, and often, it becomes more difficult to care for themselves and their homes. You may notice warning signs over time or all at once. If the lightbulbs are burned out and they’re not being replaced, the lawn is unkempt, and the exterior paint is peeling, it’s time to think about the fact that your older parents need help.

 

Any number of signs could show that things aren’t going well at home for your parents. They may not be willing or even able, to tell you that they’re no longer able to keep up with things. The important things are to keep a keen eye, communicate about your observations, and seek help when you need to.

 

Caring for Elderly Parents

 

You’re better acquainted with your parents’ habits and lifestyles than anyone else. What’s commonplace for someone else, may be an area of concern for your parents. Checking up on your parents is more important than ever since the onset of COVID-19. Quarantining and isolation in the name of health separates seniors from society even more than normal.

 

How to Spot That You Mom or Dad Needs Home Care

 

When you spend time with your parents, if something seems off, it probably is. If the issues on the following list sound familiar, your parents probably need home care:

 

  •   Late or collection notices in the mail or utilities being shut off
  •   Appliances that don’t work and they’re not cooking or eating.
  •   Mood changes—mild or extreme
  •   Home is cluttered and garbage is building up
  •   Not keeping up with laundry and cleaning
  •   Signs of fatigue or depression
  •   Clothing is torn, worn, dirty, or ill-fitting
  •   Moldy or unsanitary food in the refrigerator
  •   Misplacing keys or wallets
  •   Forgetting to take medications
  •   Loss of interest in activities they used to enjoy
  •   Missing doctor appointments or other activities
  •   Noticeable weight loss without reason
  •   Poor hygiene or body odor
  •   Difficulty walking or frequent falling
  •   Frequent injuries or bruising
  •   Dents or damage to their car or car accidents

 

What do you do when you notice some of these issues with your loved ones? To begin with, open up a conversation about it, as tough as that may be. After getting the issues out in the open, the next conversation should center around their needs.

 

Assess Your Parent’s Needs

 

Seniors’ needs fall under several different categories. That makes it very challenging to make a list of the issues they need help with.  

 

Get out a notebook and write these headings down.

 

  •   Safety at home
  •   Medical or medication needs
  •   Cognitive impairment
  •   Mobility
  •   Hygiene and personal care-bathing, dressing, etc.
  •   Shopping, cooking, and meal preparation
  •   Transportation
  •   Companionship

 

Try to have an honest conversation about specific tasks that they need help with. Don’t forget that family members need support as well.

 

Finding Help for My Loved One

 

Taking the first steps toward getting help can be extremely overwhelming. Learning what services are available will help to relieve you of much of your fear and anxiety.

 

This partial list of senior services should give you some encouragement.

 

  •   Senior care managers-They have vast experience in the senior care industry. They’re typically well acquainted with senior care services. Their experience could save you a lot of anxiety and frustration.
  •   In-home care-Hiring a caregiver to come in and provide some type of senior care help.
  •   Assisted living-Senior living communities often offer varying levels of care from minimal care to advanced care and everything in between.
  •   Geriatric physicians-Doctors that care for seniors with age-related conditions.
  •   Area Agency on Aging-This is an agency that’s funded by federal, state, and local governments that provides senior care services at the county level. It’s a good place to start to learn more about the senior care services and how to access them.

 

Watch for signs that your parents need help and take a few steps to put the right help in place. The right care may be more available than you think.

 

 

 

 

What Is Home Care and What Types of Home Care Are Available?

Home caregivers are also referred to as home health aides. If you’re a senior or someone else that needs some extra help, home caregivers can make your life easier and more enjoyable.

Many different services fall under the topic of home health care. A caregiver’s duties likely offer more options than you might think. If you need some extra help, it’s worthwhile to check into it sooner rather than later.

What Is Home Care?

Home care is defined as any type of professional care or support that makes it possible for people to live in their homes safely.

Most often, seniors and others that need help hire home care for these reasons:

· They need help with activities of daily living (also known as ADL).
· They’re living with chronic health issues.
· They’re recovering from surgery or another medical condition.
· They have a physical or mental health disability.

You can schedule home care for a short period or for long-term. Home care can often make the difference between having to live in a nursing home and staying home.

To give you a snapshot of the scope of home care services, see these statistics:

· 70% of people turning 65 can expect to use some form of long-term care.
· Home care isn’t just for seniors—12 million people receive home care in the U.S. every year.
· Over 33,000 home care agencies provide care in the U.S.
· 1.5 million people currently work as home care workers.
· Home care is $465 billion per year industry.

What Types of Home Care Are Available?

Depending on the type of assistance you need, you can choose from a variety of services. Some of them require training and certification and others don’t. When hiring caregivers, it’s important to get their job description and learn the type of care that they’re supposed to give, as well as the type of care they’re not permitted to provide.

Caregivers often spend a lot of time with the people they’re assigned to care for. It’s essential to choose caregivers carefully. Good caregivers tend to be naturally caring and compassionate individuals.

Types of Home Care Services and What to Expect:

· Skilled nursing care-records vital signs, assists with medical equipment, feeding, medication reminders. May also help with errands, light housekeeping, and meal preparation.
· Occupational therapists-help ill or injured people improve the skills they need for living and working.
· Companion care-provides company, may drive them to social activities, gives them someone to talk with to prevent loneliness.
· Personal care-helps with bathing and dressing, preparing meals, light housekeeping.
· Hospice care-provides physical care and emotional care during the final stages of life.
· Palliative care-special medical care for people living with a serious illness. Palliative caregivers strive to help them get relief from pain and be more comfortable to enjoy a better quality of life under the conditions.

Be aware that you can always scale home care services up or down depending on your needs. Home care services can make a major impact on the happiness and quality of life for seniors and others that need help. Taking the first step to explore your options will give you much-needed relief. You have nothing to lose by checking it out.

How to Take Care of an Elderly Person After Hospitalization

Hospitals are releasing patients as soon as they can because of insurance or other reasons. While elderly patients might meet the criteria for discharge, they might not be physically or mentally ready to go home when they’re told it’s time.

 

Out of worry and concern for a loved one, many families find themselves darting around at the last minute to find after-care and rehabilitation resources to ensure that a patient doesn’t have a setback.

 

Getting the right care after hospitalization can aid an elderly person in their recovery and help make them stronger and healthier.

 

Making a Smooth Transition from the Hospital to Home

 

Under the best of circumstances, elderly people are vulnerable. After a hospitalization, elderly people have many old and new health matters to contend with like:

 

  •   Reduced mobility
  •   Risk of falling
  •   Risk of infection
  •   Medication mix-ups
  •   Side effects from medications
  •   Complications from surgery or other treatments

 

In addition to these health risks, elderly people need to get back into a routine of healthy eating and exercise. That doesn’t usually happen right away, but it’s always a goal.

 

Seniors need a special diet after being charged from the hospital.

 

It’s important to help an elderly person’s bodily systems get working again and the right diet helps seniors with digestion and blood circulation.

 

There are over 2 million Medicare recipients in the U.S. In fact, the New England Journal of Medicine reports that 20% of people that get discharged from a hospital get readmitted sometime later. Many of them get worse before they’re readmitted.

 

Here are some tips for things you should consider as part of hospital discharge planning for elderly people.

 

  •   Type of equipment needed—canes, wheelchairs, oxygen tanks, etc.
  •   Setting up the home—removing rugs, adding grab bars, rearranging furniture, etc.
  •   Bringing in a hospital bed
  •   Arranging for visits from a nurse, OT, PT, or other home care services
  •   Arranging transportation to medical appointments

 

Types of Help an Elderly Person Needs After Hospitalization

 

The hospital may be able to help you set up some of the after-care needs for discharge planning but be aware they may not be able to arrange for all the services you need. Home care services can fill the gap in services that you need after hospitalization, and longer if necessary.

 

Here are some of the needs that elderly people commonly need after surgery or hospitalization:

 

  •   Help with safe transfer and mobility
  •   Medication reminders
  •   Meal preparation
  •   Transportation to medical appointments
  •   Taking detailed notes for family
  •   Bathing and personal hygiene
  •   Exercise
  •   Companionship

 

At the time of admission, the hospital may discuss discharge planning. If they don’t, it will be up to the elderly person or their family to make sure everything is in place for continuing care.

 

At the end of a hospital stay, it will ease your stress if you have a detailed plan for how to manage things when it’s time to bring an elderly patient home. A smooth transition to the home environment will facilitate recovery, prevent infections and illnesses, and give everyone involved the confidence to move forward safely.

 

Most importantly, by enlisting the help of a home caregiver, you may very well prevent an elderly person from having a setback that takes them back to the hospital.

 

 

What Can Seniors Eat After Surgery to Recover Fast

A surgical procedure is an invasive procedure and most people wonder what to eat after surgery. That’s a good question for seniors that are facing surgery to ask because good nutrition will help them heal more quickly. The doctor will advise when a senior can begin eating again after surgery. A healthy diet will reinvigorate the body’s systems and stimulate the body’s natural healing. 

 

Planning for a diet that includes a good selection of foods that are packed with vitamins and minerals will help to repair damaged tissue and stimulate cell growth. Healthy food for seniors after surgery

includes a nutrient-rich diet, along with 6-8 glasses of water. These choices help to prevent some of the common post-surgery problems such as dehydration and constipation. Healthy food for seniors after surgery includes lean protein and foods with lots of fiber. 

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Healthy Food for Seniors After Surgery

 

Doctors prescribe a healthy diet for seniors after they’ve had surgery. When they get home, they need to prepare meals for themselves or have someone else prepare meals. It’s important to know what to eat after surgery to decrease inflammation. 

 

If you’re wondering what to eat after surgery with anesthesia, the following foods are healthy choices:

 

  • Milk kefir-after surgery, physicians usually give seniors antibiotics to help prevent infections. Antibiotics also help to destroy harmful bacteria in the digestive system. Seniors may avoid problems like constipation and diarrhea. 
  • Citrus fruit-a senior’s supply of collagen drops severely when they’re injured or under stress. Vitamin C is helpful for restoring collagen in an aging body. Citrus fruits like oranges, lemons, limes, and grapefruits contain vitamin C. Add citrus fruits to meals to aid the healing process.
  • Fatty fish-fish contains healthy fats and they help to break down vitamins in the body so they can be used more efficiently. Seniors that eat cod and Alaskan salmon will have an easier time with digestion. Fatty fish products contain omega-e fatty acids which also help reduce inflammation. 
  • Berries-after surgery, molecules called free radicals grow and may attack damaged tissue in the days after the procedure. Antioxidants are complex substances that protect against free radicals. Raspberries, blueberries, and blackberries are good sources of antioxidants. 
  • Whole grains-whole grains are a good source of carbohydrates which provide a good source of energy and build muscle tissue. Quina, whole wheat products, and oats are good whole grain choices. 
  • Red meat-amino acids help to create new cells after surgery. Red meats, especially meat from grass-fed cows that haven’t been injected with hormones are a good source of nutrient-dense meat. 

                                                                                                                                                                                                  

What to Eat After Surgery to Avoid Constipation

 

Fiber is an important ingredient in everyone’s diet because it’s instrumental in preventing constipation which is a common problem after surgery. Constipation can be painful and it can increase the potential for medical attention during recovery.

 

If you’re wondering what to eat after surgery to avoid constipation, here are some good high-fiber food choices:

 

  • Whole grain bread
  • Corn
  • Oatmeal
  • Fruits 
  • Vegatables
  • Cereal such as oatmeal or cream of wheat

 

Drink Water to Keep the Senior Hydrated

 

Replacing lost fluids also helps a senior’s body to heal itself after surgery. Small amounts of water isn’t sufficient. Try adding herbs or a little lemon to take the boredom out of plain drinking water. 

 

Foods to Avoid After Surgery

 

It’s just as important to know what not to eat after surgery as it is to plan a healthy post-surgical diet. Certain foods will increase the potential for constipation.  Constipation can be painful and put pressure on a senior’s incision. 

 

Here’s a list of foods to avoid: 

 

  • Dried and dehydrated foods
  • Milk and dairy products
  • Cheese
  • Milk and dairy products
  • Sweets and sugary foods

 

Losing Appetite After Surgery

 

Constipation or nausea sometimes causes a loss of appetite after surgery. It’s for seniors to eat even if they don’t feel like it. Calorie-dense foods such as smoothies made with yogurt and fruit will help to provide energy and boost calories. Protein shakes are a good choice when you’re looking for what to eat to decrease nausea. 

 

Recovering from surgery is challenging at any age, but it’s especially difficult for senior adults. Seniors need to take special care with their diets to aid in the healing process and regain their strength. 

 

At-Home Care Services provides in-home caregivers to ensure that seniors are getting the proper nutrition after surgery. We provide professionally trained and certified caregivers to care for seniors after surgery and longer if they need it. Hire a caregiver today for in-home care needs for seniors after surgery.