How to Reduce the Risk for Pressure Sores
Posted by PKSD Law Firm on July 9, 2015 in Nursing Home Abuse
Nursing home neglect comes in many shapes and sizes and is sometimes more apparent than others.
For patients who are bedridden or who sit in a wheel chair for the majority of their day, the attention of nurses and other nursing home staff is extremely important to prevent the development of medical conditions like pressure sores and other health problems that can be potentially dangerous.
Pressure Sores are Preventable
Pressure sores can occur when a person has been laying or sitting in one position for too long. Overtime, unrelieved pressure restricts blood flow to the skin and tissue, causing the tissue and surrounding muscle to die. The resulting sores can begin as a small area of irritated skin, but can quickly progress into a larger, extremely painful sore that can even lead to death.
The sores usually develop where the bone sits closest to the skin, in areas like back, hips, heels and ankles. To prevent these dangerous wounds, follow these steps to ensure the safety and comfort of your loved one.
Change Position Frequently: It is best to change a persons position in bed every two hours to alleviate pressure that has developed in vulnerable areas. Lifting devices can be used to also help prevent the skin from rubbing against sheets.
Keep Skin Clean and Dry: Make sure that your loved one is regularly bathed and put back into a clean and dry bed.
Utilize Support Surfaces: The use of special pillows, cushions and even mattresses can help relieve pressure that is built up in areas like the back. These devices are helpful for changing up a patients position.
Maintain a Healthy Diet: Make sure that your loved one has the appropriate amount of calories, protein, vegetables and water in their diet to keep their skin healthy and hydrated.
Keep Wounds Clean: If a pressure sore does develop, it can be treated. Keep the wound clean by washing it with warm water and mild soap. You should also use a saline solution if the wound is open. Keeping the wound clean and dressed will help prevent infection.
Pressure sores are a preventable injury in nursing homes. By keeping a close eye on your loved one and following these tips, you can help prevent sores that develop as a result of nursing home negligence.