Tag-Archive for » bedridden patients «

Thursday, June 10th, 2010 | Author:

Being bedridden can get really boring, and if the condition is semi-permanent or for the rest of someone’s life, that person will experience serious lows in his or her mood while learning to live in this new state, where normal life interferes, where a low air loss mattress becomes their best friend, and where contact with people diminishes considerably.

In this sense, the best gift you can give someone you love, who happens to be bedridden, is your time and regular presence in his or her life.  When someone can’t move from a bed, the way to connect with the world and to avoid monotony is through the company of others; thus, schedule a weekly chess game, an hour to read, or just drop by with some magazines.

If you want to give your loved one a material gift, first answer these questions:

-What’s his or her health condition?  Some foods or gifts like massages could be harmful.
-How much can he or she move?  Do not give a journal to someone who can’t move his or her arms.
-What does he or she have access to?  Bring DVDs or games only if they have a way to use them.
-What does he or she like?
-What does he or she already have?

It is best if you ask your loved one if he or she would like the gift you are thinking of because when one has to spend every single hour of every single day in the same room, an unwanted or old gift may become a burden.

After answering the questions above, it will be easier to find a great gift for your loved one.  Here we give you some suggestions:

-Crafts and activities
Give him or her a book of origami, a book of puzzles, or logic and riddle books.

If your loved one likes to write, get him or her some stationery or a journal, and if they are unable to write, offer to write letters and emails for them.

Help him or her start a long distance education course.

-Electronics
Gift your loved one with access to a new world by giving him or her a laptop with Internet connection, a TV, a DVD player, or game console.  All these are great entertainment when you have to remain in bed permanently.

-Food
As long as the doctor allows it, food is always a great gift.  Bring him or her their favorite treat or food every once in a while.

-Entertainment
Books and DVDs are a must.  Offer to get your loved one any book they want to read, and even offer to read it to them, and schedule time to watch movies or TV series with them.  It gets much better when there’s the chance to socialize while reading or watching TV.

-Comfort
Details like a satin pillow, cotton nightgowns, or warm socks are very valuable and seldom considered.  A good massage is a gift that will be happily welcomed too.

The truly important thing about a gift for a bedridden person is the meaning behind it.  It is the knowledge that you haven’t forgotten the person, and that you still want to be a part of his or her life.

If you liked this article, tell all your friends about it. They’ll thank you for it. If you have a blog or website, you can link to it or even post it to your own site (don’t forget to mention our Pressure Mattress website as the original source).

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Monday, June 07th, 2010 | Author:

It is very common that the muscles of a person who has to remain in bed for extended periods of time deteriorate due to the lack of use; however, it is not easy to see someone you love lose his or her ability to move arms or legs.

Luckily, you can help.  Besides the help a pressure mattress offers to move the patient at regular intervals, there is a set of exercises called ROM, Range of Motion exercises, that can avert, and even reverse, this situation, unless it is a very serious case.

ROM exercises can be active or passive.  The active style applies to patients who can do the exercises by themselves.  The exercises here are done by the bedridden person but with someone’s assistance.  The passive style works for patients who can’t move by themselves; thus, someone else has to do the exercises for them.  In both cases, the exercises will put off muscle deterioration from happening.

Before starting any exercise routine with a bedridden person, make sure his or her doctor approves it; this is truly important, you can cause serious problems to the patient if his or her condition doesn’t allow for some kind of exercise.

Following is a guide on how to perform the ROM exercises, these specifically apply to the arms; nevertheless, can be used in any part of the body:

1.Shoulder
-Stretch out the scapula: Roll the shoulder blade forward by placing one hand over the front of the shoulder and the other hand on the shoulder blade.

-Flexion and extension: Put the arm straight down to the side.  Reach straight up to the head and back.  Lift the arm overhead and put it back down to the side.

-Horizontal adduction: Put the arm straight out to the side, reach across and touch the other shoulder.

-Abduction: Put the arm straight out to the side, palm up, circle out and up overhead to touch the opposite ear.

-Internal and external rotation: Put the arm at the side, bend the elbow, move hand to the stomach and then back to the bed.  The elbow must remain bent and touching the person’s side.

2.Elbow and forearm
-Elbow flexion and extension: Put the arm at the side, palm up, and touch the hand to the shoulder and return to the starting position.

-Forearm pronation and supination: Put the arm at the side, bend the elbow, turn palm towards the face and then towards the feet.  Make sure you turn the forearm and not the wrist.

3.Wrist
-Wrist radial and ulnar deviation: Keep the arm to the side, bend the elbow and move the wrist up and down as if shaking hands.

-Wrist flexion and extension: Keep the arm to the side, bend the elbow and move the wrist as if waving goodbye, moving the hand from the back of the forearm to the front of the forearm.

-Wrist circumduction: With the arm to the side, bend the elbow and move the wrist in a circular motion.

4.Hand and fingers
-Hand metacarpal gliding: Hold each edge of the hand with the back of the hand facing you.  Place your thumbs on adjacent metacarpal bones and move up and down in relation to each other.

-Fingers flexion and extension: Open and close the hand.

-Fingers abduction and adduction: Fan the fingers apart and together.

-Fingers opposition: Touch the thumb to the base of each finger.

-Fingers metacarpalphalangeal flexion: Steady the ends of the fingers.  At the knuckles, bend at first knuckle, the one closest to the hand, keeping the fingers straight.

-Fingers proximal interphalangeal flexion: Steady the first knuckle joint and bend the second joint maintaining the rest of the fingers straight.

-Fingers distal interphalangeal flexion: Steady the first and second joint and bend the third knuckle joint.

If you liked this article, tell all your friends about it. They’ll thank you for it. If you have a blog or website, you can link to it or even post it to your own site (don’t forget to mention our Pressure Mattress website as the original source).

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Tuesday, May 18th, 2010 | Author:

Pavanmukta Asana, or the Wind Releasing Posture, is a yoga posture that is perfect for bedridden patients, whether they can do it by themselves or with the help of their caregiver.

The Posture

This posture is easy to perform, and people of every age can practice it.

While lying on the back on a firm surface, ask the bedridden patient to keep the palms down and close to the body.  Bring the heels and toes together and keep them loose.  The whole body must be straight and the patient must look up to the ceiling and breathe normally.

-Lift one knee up towards the patient’s chest.

-Pull the knee towards the chest and stomach without pulling the ankle.

-In that posture, ask the patient to relax all the muscles and continue to breathe normally.  Maintain the posture for 6 to 8 seconds.

-Release by returning the leg back to its original position.

-Repeat with the other leg, pressing against the chest and stomach.

The Benefits

The foot and calf asanas activate the inert lymph and venous blood.  These alleviate tiredness and cramps, as well as prevent venous thrombosis, especially in bedridden or post-operative patients.

This posture, specifically, activates the pancreas and other organs within the abdomen, and alleviates wind trouble and acidity.  It also loosens the hip joints and stimulates the abdominal muscle and intestines, eliminating constipation and correcting any stomach breakdown.

Pavanmukta Asana is a posture that complements the effects of a low air loss mattress in permanently bedridden patients.  Its objective is also to activate important parts and organs in the body, which are compromised due to the regular lack of movement.

Pregnant women should not practice this posture, and people who have had belly surgery, or suffer from hernia and piles, should talk to a yoga expert before performing it.

If you liked this article, tell all your friends about it. They’ll thank you for it. If you have a blog or website, you can link to it or even post it to your own site (don’t forget to mention http://www.volkner.com as the original source).

Pavanmukta Asana, or the Wind Releasing Posture, is a yoga posture that is perfect for bedridden patients, and they can do it by themselves or with help. Pavanmukta Asana, or the Wind Releasing Posture, is a yoga posture that is perfect for bedridden patients, whether they can do it by themselves or with the help of their caregiver.

The Posture

This posture is easy to perform, and people of every age can practice it.

While lying on the back on a firm surface, ask the bedridden patient to keep the palms down and close to the body.  Bring the heels and toes together and keep them loose.  The whole body must be straight and the patient must look up to the ceiling and breathe normally.

-Lift one knee up towards the patient’s chest.

-Pull the knee towards the chest and stomach without pulling the ankle.

-In that posture, ask the patient to relax all the muscles and continue to breathe normally.  Maintain the posture for 6 to 8 seconds.

-Release by returning the leg back to its original position.

-Repeat with the other leg, pressing against the chest and stomach.

The Benefits

The foot and calf asanas activate the inert lymph and venous blood.  These alleviate tiredness and cramps, as well as prevent venous thrombosis, especially in bedridden or post-operative patients.

This posture, specifically, activates the pancreas and other organs within the abdomen, and alleviates wind trouble and acidity.  It also loosens the hip joints and stimulates the abdominal muscle and intestines, eliminating constipation and correcting any stomach breakdown.

Pavanmukta Asana is a posture that complements the effects of a low air loss mattress in permanently bedridden patients.  Its objective is also to activate important parts and organs in the body, which are compromised due to the regular lack of movement.

Pregnant women should not practice this posture, and people who have had belly surgery, or suffer from hernia and piles, should talk to a yoga expert before performing it.

If you liked this article, tell all your friends about it. They’ll thank you for it. If you have a blog or website, you can link to it or even post it to your own site (don’t forget to mention http://www.volkner.com as the original source).

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Thursday, May 13th, 2010 | Author:

Anyone who is bedridden and suffers from Alzheimer’s has 10 vital needs that must be met by his or her caregiver to ensure they remain as healthy as possible:

1.Prevention of skin decay and pressure sores
Bedridden patients must be re-positioned regularly to prevent bedsores from forming.

It is easier to prevent pressure sores than to heal them, thus get the help of an alternating pressure mattress to move the patient regularly, or move him or her yourself at least every two hours, from left to right, to release the pressure in certain body areas.  If you are moving the patient, use pillows to support the position.

A balanced diet and the ingestion of lots of liquid will help keep the bedridden Alzheimer’s patient’s skin healthy.

2.Getting out of bed for some hours every day
Every bedridden patient should leave the bed for a few hours every day.  Now, there is equipment available to help any caregiver get the most severely disabled person into a chair.

Sitting for a while helps relieve pressure spots, especially on the back, shoulder blades, back of the head, and hips.

3.Learning to do passive movements
This is necessary to prevent joints from seizing, and thus, caregivers must learn how to do this.

Passive movements have to do with moving the joints without the patient exerting any effort.

4.Eating and drinking well
It is normal for bedridden patients not wanting to eat or drink, because they usually have poor appetite, find it hard to swallow, are depressed, and feel sick.

A dietician may give you good advice as to how to choose the best diet for a bedridden patient, what food supplement drinks are good, how to liquefy foods, and what feeding aids may help you.

5.Keeping mouth, eyes, ears, and general hygiene levels high
Bedridden patients must be cleaned regularly, especially if they suffer from incontinence.

Do not forget to take care of the mouth and teeth.

Let the patient use glasses or hearing aids until these become uncomfortable or dangerous.

6.Dealing with incontinence
At some point, Alzheimers patients will suffer from urinary and/or fecal incontinence.  The caregiver must train to be able to take care of these episodes in a way that is comfortable for the patient.

There are many products today that help in these situations.

7.Lowering the risk of injury
If the patient tends to fall, put his or her mattress and springs on the floor.

Make sure you use the right support and bed cot sides.  Avoid using restraint unless it is an emergency.

8.    Massaging and touching
Massages soothe and relieve pain.  The caregiver must massage the patient’s arms, hands, and legs with oil or moisturizer.  This will improve the skin’s condition, and will prevent dryness and irritation.

Touching the patient with care is very important to reassure the person that someone cares for him or her.  Comb or stroke their hair with love, and hold their hand while talking to them.

9.Focusing on what they enjoy
A bedridden patient must have regular activities.  Talk to them, show them pictures, play music, or read to them.

Try to maintain the activities you know they loved.

Try to take them outdoors to breathe fresh air and feel the sun on their skin.

10.Giving them a view
Locate their bed near a window with a nice view, but make sure the sun and heat do not hit them directly during the day.

If you liked this article, tell all your friends about it. They’ll thank you for it. If you have a blog or website, you can link to it or even post it to your own site (don’t forget to mention http://www.volkner.com as the original source).

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Tuesday, May 11th, 2010 | Author:

Very often, elderly people end up sitting in a living room or lying down in bed permanently with little or no stimulation.

As they age, people lose the capacity to move freely.  It is common that they end up bedridden or on a wheelchair, dependant on a pressure mattress or on your help to move, and with very few activities that fuel their minds.

Here we offer you 5 ideas to stimulate your loved one’s mind while he or she ages, so that they can enjoy a better quality of life even if they have to remain in bed permanently:

1.An elder person’s room has to have decoration that stimulates the mind.  People who have to stay in bed for long periods of time end up depressed and looking at the ceiling if they are not offered opportunities to activate their minds.

Hang up beautiful and colorful posters with images that interest the person, and even attach them to the ceiling, but make sure they are well fixed to avoid accidents.

If the person has traveled a lot, choose images to remind him or her of past trips. If they like animals, hang up animal pictures. If they like movies, find old movie posters and make their room look like a cinema, or you may enlarge their favorite family and youth photos and hang them around the room to prompt your loved one to tell stories about his or her life.

Rotate the posters every once in a while to stimulate the mind even more and to make the room look different.

2.Put some shelves around the room within your loved one’s line of sight and place interesting items on them.  You can put photos, cards, and colorful objects.

Move or replace the items regularly to create interest, and find out if your loved one notices.

3.Put a basket near the bed or chair, in a place that is easily reachable, so that your bedridden loved one is able to grab the items in it without help.

You can put inside small photo albums, magazines, books, or puzzles.

4.Anything that is used in the room can help stimulate your loved one’s mind and prompt conversations.

Fill the room with flowers and plants so that your loved one is in contact with nature.  They can even do some gardening from their bed.

Play soft music constantly; classical music is great, and let them talk about the composer and the piece they are listening to.  Very often, music brings back fond memories.

5.Bedridden people must be in contact with others; they must talk about memories, family times, or about a specific object or poster in their bedroom.  Invite people they love to visit as often as possible to prompt interesting and happy conversations.

When interesting objects and lots of color are placed within a bedridden person’s eye level, you are giving him or her the gift of mind stimulation in addition to making their living space look beautiful, cozy, bright, and happy.

If you liked this article, tell all your friends about it. They’ll thank you for it. If you have a blog or website, you can link to it or even post it to your own site (don’t forget to mention http://www.volkner.com as the original source).

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Monday, April 26th, 2010 | Author:

Giving a bath to a person who is bedridden is an activity that has to be learned properly in order to ensure the comfort and safety of the patient.

There are easy techniques we can learn to care for our bedridden loved ones in an effective and loving way. The last thing we want is to cause them harm, thus, we must be very careful when moving them while giving them a bed bath, and we have understand that we will be bathing the person by body parts, not the whole body at once.

Here’s what you should do to bathe a bedridden person so that he or she feels truly clean:

1.Always keep the person’s bottom very clean, so that when bathing time comes, this body part is easier to take care of.  Every time there is an incontinence incident, and after every bowel movement, wash the area thoroughly.

2.Get a small bathtub and fill it with warm water.  You will need five washcloths and five small towels to clean the whole body, because these will be changed frequently to keep the water clean.  You want the dirt to stay on the cloths, not the water.  You can put a small amount of liquid soap into the water, but just a couple of drops so that it doesn’t feel soapy.

3.Adjust the room temperature and get rid of drafts so that the person is not cold.  When the water gets cold, change it to ensure it always remains at a nice warm temperature.

4.Ensure there will be complete privacy while you are bathing your loved one, do not take any phone calls during the process, and focus on the person.

5.Expose body parts as you will be washing them, keep the rest covered to avoid chills.

6.Be cheerful as you bathe the person, talk to them, put some music on if they like it, and treat him or her as you would like to be treated.

7.To begin the bath, put the person on his or her back and expose the upper part of the body.  Wet the washcloth with warm water and rub it on the patient’s face and neck, then, dip a towel into the water, squeeze the excess of liquid, and rub to rinse these body parts.  Get another towel and dry them thoroughly.  Discard the washcloth and rinsing towel; you can use the drying towel again.

8.Repeat the procedure above to wash the arms, hands, and chest, and when you’re done, cover them with a blanket to keep the person warm.

9.Next, turn the person to one side and wash the back with circular movements, following the same routine as before.  After drying the back thoroughly, put the patient back in bed.  Right now may be a good time to change the water, since it may have gotten cold.

10.It’s time to move to the lower part of the body.  Start by washing the legs and feet in the same way you washed the arms and hands, and after drying thoroughly, cover them right away.

11.The last body part you should wash is the bottom.  Use the same procedure as for the rest of the body, and cover as soon as you’re done.

12.Put clean clothes on the person, change the bed sheets, and position the patient comfortably over a low air loss mattress to stimulate circulation in his or her body.

This bathing technique uses a very small amount of water and maximizes the caregiver’s time while making the bedridden person feel refreshed and comfortable.

If you liked this article, tell all your friends about it. They’ll thank you for it. If you have a blog or website, you can link to it or even post it to your own site (don’t forget to mention http://www.volkner.com as the original source).

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Wednesday, April 21st, 2010 | Author:

Bedridden patients can benefit greatly from a massage.  A pressure mattress is crucial, but not enough, to stimulate the tissues, muscles, and organs in the body; hence, a massage works great to improve the patient’s circulation and to invigorate the muscles to avoid their atrophy.

But, the benefits of a massage in bedridden patients go beyond the physical aspect.  This kind of therapy also makes them feel calmer and reduces stress, helping alleviate pain.

There are 3 types of massages that you can recommend to your bedridden loved one:

1.Myofascial massage
This massage involves the whole body and it is done to relieve the tension in the fascia, which is the fibrous connective tissue that ties muscles and organs together in the body.

The physiotherapist uses long and stretching movements to relax the muscles that are tense.  It is a soft massage that can help alleviate pain.

With slow, steady rubs that are directed towards the heart, blood flow through the body is increased, and in this way, additional oxygen and nutrients can flow more easily to the tissues to enhance the healing process and to relieve pain.

The movement works out the heart muscle and offers training support to the arteries.

2.Swedish massage
This type of massage is more aggressive than the myofascial and is recommended for patients who suffer from muscles spasms and acute pain.  The movements of the Swedish massage affect the muscles, joints, ligaments, and fascia.

Besides improving circulation, this massage enhances breathing capability, reduces the swelling produced by fluid retention, soothes the nerves, and improves flexibility and joint range of motion.

To enhance the healing benefits, the physiotherapist uses hot and cold applications while doing the massage.  Depending on the patient’s level of comfort, the rubs can be gentle or strong.

The ligaments are massaged along and across to stimulate the drainage of toxins and flexibility, and the strong vertical rubs imitate the effects of exercise.

The therapist uses fast vibrating movements to help clear the lungs, to control muscle and joint pain, and to generate muscle contractions.  To alleviate aching joints and to produce a feeling of wellness, the Swedish massage includes compression done with warm oil.

3.Geriatric massage
This type of massage uses many techniques and is tailored to the patient.  It treats emotional states as much as physical ones that are normal in elderly people, and is mainly used in hospitals and nursing homes to help seniors that are bedridden.

People who have to remain in bed for long periods of time need soft massage rubs with oil to help alleviate bedsores and pressure points, and it is also vital to consider arthritis, high blood pressure, brittle bones, and hardened arteries, when defining a massage routine for the elderly.

The geriatric massage may use techniques from the Swedish and myofascial types, plus others from more gentle therapies like Reiki and aromatherapy.  The physiotherapist must be specially trained to deal with the needs of bedridden seniors to ensure the patient is professionally cared for.

If you liked this article, tell all your friends about it. They’ll thank you for it. If you have a blog or website, you can link to it or even post it to your own site (don’t forget to mention http://www.volkner.com as the original source).

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Monday, April 12th, 2010 | Author:

Many people are bedridden due to a disease or other medical condition, and they are commonly not able to perform normal everyday physical activities.

After surgery, there are patients who may have to remain in bed for long periods of time during their recovery, and other people may have disabling diseases or injuries that may chain them to a bed for years or even their whole life.

This is not easy to accept and deal with. Besides the obvious frustration and sadness these people feel in the face of their condition, they have to learn to function effectively and normally again while remaining in bed. They have to learn to be independent, and in many cases, they have to learn to welcome the help of others.

These 8 products are essential to help bedridden patients simplify many of the normal complications they face in their daily life and also to help ease the job of the caregivers:

1.Hospital beds and accessories
These are the most basic products a bedridden patient needs.  The bed is the main element in the patient’s care environment, be it at home or at other types of caring facilities.

A hospital bed helps position the patient and keeps him or her safe, which is not possible with a normal bed.  There are fully electric and semi-electric models that are easier for patients and caregivers to control.

Over bed tables are a very popular accessory used with the bed.  Their height is adjustable; some models have a tilt-top, others have two stages, and still others are of low height range.

2.Pressure relief mattresses
The pressure mattress or low air loss mattress is indispensable to prevent and heal pressure sores, which are the most common complication bedridden patients experience.

Anyone who has to remain in bed or on a wheelchair for long periods of time can get pressure sores.  These are injuries caused by unrelieved pressure that hurts the skin and its underlying tissues by squeezing minute blood vessels that provide oxygen and nutrients to the skin.

Pressure relief mattresses are very effective in helping heal and prevent these injuries and in easing the care giving process considerably.

3.Patient lifts
These are the most common transfer tools used by caregivers to easily and safely move someone who has lost his or her body movement capabilities.  They can be driven mechanically or electrically, and help avoid the risk of injury both for the patient and the caregiver.

4.Wheelchairs
These are the best tools for patients to move independently, even if it is only for a few hours.

5.Patient alarms
Bedridden patients easily fall when trying to leave the bed or chair, or when taking a shower.  In order to prevent this from happening so often, patient alarms have been designed to monitor patients and alert caregivers when immediate help is required.

6.Shower wheelchairs
These solve the personal hygiene needs of patients with spinal cord injuries and other disabilities.  They are designed to make the person as independent as possible; thus, they can be used over the toilet and in the shower.

7.Personal care
There are countless options of personal care products for bedridden patients.  Among the best we can count:
-Personal massagers
-Incontinence pants
-Massaging foot spas
-Steam inhalers
-Foot care
-Inflatable bath pillows
-Water bottles
-Self-wipe bathroom toilet aids
-Heel and elbow protectors
-Disposable liners
-Bed pans
-Limb holders
-Mealtime protectors
-Temperature monitors
-Cast and bandage protectors
-Male and female urinals
-Instruction cards
-Wetness alert devices
-Wraps
-Ice bags
-Neck rests
-Hair rinsers
-Bed shampoo kits
-Protective helmets

8.Air chairs
These can be used as wheelchairs or can turn any chair into a pressure relief system to help prevent pressure sores while sitting.

If you liked this article, tell all your friends about it. They’ll thank you for it. If you have a blog or website, you can link to it or even post it to your own site (don’t forget to mention http://www.volkner.com as the original source).

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