If you are or will be taking care of a loved one at home, you will need to learn how to identify signs and symptoms of certain medical conditions that may warrant a trip to the doctor. A professional caregiver coach services company will work with you to answer all your questions regarding caring for your loved one in the home setting. Here are three health disorders you will need to look out for when providing home health care for your loved one:
As people age or become ill, they may not feel like drinking water. In fact, they may not even feel thirsty or be able to make their needs known to you. It is for these reasons that you will need to be able to identify signs and symptoms of dehydration in your loved one. Professional caregivers see dehydration on a regular basis and are always available to answer your questions.
Dehydration can be very serious, and if not recognized and treated quickly, a life-threatening situation can arise. Your professional caregiver coach will tell you that signs of dehydration may include a dry, sticky mouth, sunken eyes, and a fast heartbeat.
Another common sign of dehydration is poor skin turgor. To assess your loved one's skin turgor, gently pinch the skin on the back of the hand to form a small tent. When you let go of the tented skin, it should snap back into place in a second or two. If the pinched/tented skin stays in position and is slow to snap back, poor skin turgor is present.
Another sign of dehydration is scant urinary output and concentrated urine. To help reverse dehydration, have your loved one drink plenty of non-caffeinated beverages, until urine production increases and becomes clearer in color.
Even mild skin breakdown can lead to pressure ulcers. If you notice an area of redness on your loved one's skin, especially on the skin over bony prominences, gently massage the area to increase circulation and blood flow. If circulation is not improved, the skin may break down further, leading to open wounds and decubitus ulcers. If your loved one is bedridden, make sure to reposition him or her every couple of hours so that pressure can be relieved on areas of the skin.
Urinary Tract Infection
Urinary tract infections are not uncommon in the home health patient. Signs and symptoms of a urinary tract infection include an increase or decrease in urinary output, cloudy urine, blood in urine, burning sensation when urinating, pelvic pain, and sometimes chills and fever. While increasing water intake can help diminish symptoms, oral antibiotics may be necessary, if a bacterial infection is present.
If caring for a loved one at home is intimidating, seek the advice of a professional caregiver coach services company. Their representatives will help put you at ease, and if needed, send a home health aide to assist you in caring for your loved one.