Autoimmune Disease Management 101: Fighting Back

Are You Taking Care Of A Long-Term Patient?

Are you caring for an elderly parent in your home? Perhaps you are caring for a child who is bed-ridden for a long period of time, and maybe forever. Either way, you certainly have a full plate, don't you? From things you can do yourself to getting professional help for wound care, here are some ideas that might help you as you take care of your long-term patient.

​Things You Can Do Yourself - Obviously, you'll be taking care of things like giving medications to the patient and of making sure that he or she receives proper nourishment. You've more than likely made sure that the patient's bedroom is nicely decorated and that he or she has access to things like music and his or her favorite television shows. One thing that you probably never thought of at the beginning of your caregiving was the fact that your patient could develop bed sores, which can in turn become something very serious. There are some important things you can do that might prevent bed sores from ever becoming a problem. For example, think of setting up a routine where you turn your patient in bed several times a day, even setting an alarm clock so that the patient can be turned during the night. Consider putting things like underwear and night clothes on wrong-side-out. By doing that, seams that are part of the construction of the article of clothing won't rub the patient's tender skin, causing discomfort and maybe even painful bed sores.

Getting Professional Help - Whether it's a bed sore that has developed or whether it's a different kind of wound, think of getting professional medical help if you don't see improvement. For example, maybe you have taken great care in keeping the wound area clean and perhaps you have treated it with things like antibiotic ointment and even the liquid from an aloe vera plant. Professionals will have the training and the experience to treat the wound in an aggressive manner. The best products will be used to heal the wound. In addition, a professional will give you detailed instruction on how to care for the wound yourself. Consider taking pictures of the wound area so that you can have a record of how the wound is progressing. In addition, if you have sought the help of a medically trained person to care for the wound, you can email or text the pictures to that individual.