Bedsores bear the alternative name of pressure ulcers. Whether you’re a family member or a professional, bedsores are a matter of serious concern. Aurora Health Care Services of Delaware and Chester County, PA diligently trains staff to watch carefully for signs of developing bedsores, and how to manage the issue. Over 60,000 people die from bedsore complications, and 2.5 million develop them annually.
What Causes Bedsores?
Persons who are bedridden, or have serious mobility issues are more prone to bedsores. These develop specifically
- When someone sits or lies too long without shifting (compression).
- Constant friction or rubbing. This sometimes happens during transfers.
- Sliding in a bed in a manner that pulls skin away from the supporting tissue below.
Over time and repetition, there’s a loss of blood supply, injuring the tissue and potentially killing it altogether. Elderly people have skin that’s more prone to injury due to elasticity.
Besides these culprits, dampness is another potential player. Be it sweat or incontinence, keeping skin clean and dry is a key to deterring pressure ulcers.
The best way to prevent and heal bedsores is to learn the warning signs. Early detection combined with proper intervention can delay or wholly stop the wound.
- An area that feels odd compared to the surrounding skin (softish).
- Bruises particularly those related to a fall.
- Complaints of skin feeling hot (inflammation) or cold (lessened blood flow).
- Sensations like burning, itching, or tingling in an area.
- Skin Color Changes: What looks like a bruise may be the start of something worse.
The above-listed warning signs typically appear on the heels of a person’s feet, the tailbone, and the sides of the hip. Other common locations include the sacrum, inside the knees, ankles, shoulder bones, and areas of the head that remain in contact with the bed or pillow.
Caring for Bedsores
At Aurora Home Health Care in Feasterville, PA, we instruct our aids and the families we serve on the best practices to care for bedsores.
- As soon as you spot an affected area, find ways of relieving pressure. Every two hours, your loved one should be re-positioned.
- If your loved one will be homebound or bedridden for any length of time, obtain specialty products for vulnerable skin. Examples include gel mattresses, gentle soap, wound dressing, seat doughnuts, and foam pads. Your physician may provide scripts so these durable medical items go through your insurance plan.
- Should your senior have incontinence, you’ll want barrier cream. It protects against excess moisture and irritation.
- Unless contraindicated, increase protein in the diet.
In any instance, if you do not see any improvement in pressure ulcers, it’s important to seek medical care. Bedsores can lead to permanent nerve and muscle damage, and can even be life threatening.
Many people find having a professional nursing or aid service like those we provide a tremendous relief. Having caring people fill in the gaps when you have to tend to other areas of your life means you have more eyes to watch for potential problems. Don’t be afraid to call our office 1-215-354-4444, email info@auroraathome, or use our online contact form to get more information on how we can help.