Families must be proactive to reduce the risk of hospital readmissions for seniors. Each time your aging loved one goes to the hospital represents a new health issue that threatens his or her wellbeing. These are the seven most common reasons seniors wind up back in the hospital along with a few tips to help you prevent your loved one from being readmitted.
Several different types of pneumonia are common among seniors who have been in the hospital. Aspiration pneumonia can happen if your loved one accidentally inhales food or liquid. Seniors can also have fluid build up in their lungs if they’re in a prone position without being moved periodically. Help your loved one prepare meals that are simple to eat, and monitor him or her for choking. A caregiver should also regularly move your loved one and prop him or her up so fluid drains away from the lungs.
A professional caregiver can be a wonderful source of support for a senior who’s recovering after being hospitalized. Seniors can face a variety of challenges as they age, many of which can be mitigated with the help of professional in-home caregivers who provide high-quality elderly home care. Trust Home Care Assistance to help your elderly loved one age in place safely and comfortably.
2. Mental Health Disorders
Your loved one is also likely to fall into a state of depression during recovery. Being at home alone and unable to perform necessary parts of a daily routine can be demoralizing. Seniors may also get lonely and begin to feel as though no one cares. Surround your loved one with plenty of support when he or she gets home, and make sure a few key people continue to visit over the next several months when many other visitors stop dropping by.
3. Wound Infections
Seniors who have had surgery or required stitches have wounds that take some time to heal. Since seniors tend to heal more slowly than younger adults, the window for an infection is wider. Your loved one may need help with tasks such as cleansing the wound and changing bandages to prevent these types of infections.
A professional caregiver can closely monitor your loved one for post-hospitalization complications, including infections. Allentown home care service experts are available to provide high-quality care to seniors on an as-needed basis. From assistance with mobility and exercise to providing transportation to the doctor’s office and social events, there are a variety of ways professional caregivers can help your aging loved one continue to live independently.
4. Fall-Related Injuries
Seniors who are under the influence of new medications and weak from being ill are more likely to fall at home. Your loved one shouldn’t be climbing on ladders, walking on wet floors, or even attempting to get out of bed without help if he or she is unsteady on his or her feet. Arrange for a caregiver to stay with your loved one during the first few critical weeks of recovery so your parent doesn’t fall and get hurt.
5. Heart Failure
Seniors with cardiovascular disease must be very careful after they get home from the hospital. Set medication reminders that let your loved one know not to skip his or her medicine. Your loved one may also need help planning a heart-healthy diet that keeps cholesterol levels low.
6. New Communicable Illnesses
The recovery period after hospital discharge is a time when the immune system isn’t quite back to normal. While visitors are great, someone needs to keep watch to make sure no one who’s sick gets too close. Professional caregivers are great at serving as buffers who remind people to wash their hands before visiting so family members don’t have to do it.
7. Diabetes-Related Complications
Diabetes is another long-term health condition that places your loved one at risk for a hospital readmission. Make sure your loved one follows his or her diabetes treatment plan and that someone checks his or her blood sugar and serves the proper meals.
Many aging adults need assistance when they return home after being hospitalized. Some seniors only require help with a few daily tasks so they can maintain their independence. However, those living with serious illnesses may need more extensive assistance. Luckily, there is professional live-in care Allentown, PA, seniors can rely on. Home can be a safer and more comfortable place for your loved one to live with the help of an expertly trained and dedicated live-in caregiver. We will work with you to create a customized home care plan that’s suited for your loved one’s unique needs. Call the Home Care Assistance team at 484-350-3874 today.