Every family wants to provide their loved ones with comfort, care, and love, especially during difficult times when their health is deteriorating. For many of us, the information that a loved one only needs to be in bed is difficult to accept. Hours of care, staying awake around the clock, and taking care of the physical and emotional needs of a bedridden person is a great burden. 24-hour care can be difficult for even the most dedicated and loving family members. At such a moment, it is worth considering external support. There is a solution that can bring relief to both the sick and their relatives – hiring a caregiver for an elderly person with accommodation. In this model of cooperation, the caregiver not only works but also lives together with the patient, so that most of the time he or she is at the disposal of the sick person, providing professional care and support at every step.
Preparing a room for a bedridden person
How to prepare the interior so that the patient feels good?
When we decide to take care of a person lying in their home, one of the most important aspects is to prepare the right environment. A properly decorated interior not only affects the physical comfort of the patient but also his well-being and emotional state.
The room should be furnished according to the patient’s requirements. In the case of people with mobility difficulties, it is crucial to arrange the furniture in such a way that it will ensure freedom and safety. Let’s avoid unnecessary obstacles and take care of proper lighting, especially in the place where the patient stays. A well-lit part of the room will not only make it easier to perform everyday activities but will also have a positive effect on the well-being of the patient.
The color of the walls is also of great importance. By choosing light, warm colors, we can improve the mood of the person lying down. Additionally, it’s a good idea to invest in a few decorative elements, such as flowers or photos of loved ones. Memories and emotions associated with family and friends can be a source of comfort during difficult times.
And we can’t forget about what’s outside the window. If possible, it is a good idea to provide a good view that the patient can enjoy from the bed. It may be a home garden, a park, or simply a favorite tree. Each element of nature can be a source of relaxation and a temporary break from every day worries.
Taking care of the patient’s surroundings is not only a matter of comfort but also care for their emotions and well-being. A properly decorated interior can significantly improve the quality of life of the person in care.
Aids that can support a bedridden person
There is a whole range of specialized tools and devices that are designed to make the daily life of the bedridden person and their caregivers easier. Here are some of them:
- Medical beds: They are equipped with height-shifting features for easier patient transfer, adjustable headrests and footrests for added comfort, and drop-down rails for safety.
- Anti-decubitus mattresses: Designed to minimize pressure on specific parts of the body, they reduce the risk of pressure ulcers.
- Levers and handles: Make it easier for the patient to change position and stand up.
- Bedside tables: They allow the bedside person to comfortably eat meals, use electronic devices, or read books.
- Patient lifts: These are essential for moving the patient between the bed and the wheelchair or chair
- Disposable pads and pants: They make it easier to take care of hygiene and prevent pressure ulcers.
- Seat belts and tie-down bands: These help you maintain the correct position, minimizing the risk of falling.
In addition to the devices mentioned above, there are also others, such as portable toilets, orthopedic pillows, wet wipes for care, or handy warmers. All these aids are invaluable in the daily care of a bedridden person, as they provide comfort, safety, and dignity. However, before making a purchase decision, it is advisable to consult experts in the field of medicine or physiotherapy to choose the right solutions tailored to your individual needs.
Duties of a caregiver for an elderly person with a bedridden person
Taking care of body hygiene: a complete guide
The hygiene of an immobilized, lying person is a priority, not only for health reasons but also for the comfort and well-being of the patient. Here are some practical tips and products that can help you with your skincare routine.
The skin of an immobilized person is more prone to bedsores, so its care should be gentle and thorough. It is advisable to:
- Washing the skin with a gentle soap with a pH of 5.5
- Oiling the skin after washing and drying, e.g. with olive oil
- The use of calendula and lanolin ointments
- Paying attention to the hygiene of areas exposed to urine or feces
The ritual of daily care is the key to the patient’s comfort. Keep in mind:
- Informing the patient about planned surgeries
- Maintaining empathy, patience, and respect for privacy
- Ensuring the right temperature in the room
- Activating seniors to independent activities
- Taking care of the cleanliness of the surroundings
How to properly carry out a patient toilet?
Toileting a bedridden patient requires proper preparation and sequence of actions. The key is:
- Ensuring intimacy and thermal comfort
- Use of disposable gloves
- Protecting dry skin from the cold
- Using moisturizers for dry skin
- Cleaning the intimate area according to the rules of hygiene
- Wash the patient at least twice a day and if dirty
A variety of products available on the market can significantly facilitate daily care:
- Aqua Sensitive washcloths/gloves: Single-use washcloths with rinse-free cleaning fluid
- Aqua Shampoo Cleansing Gloves: Make it easy to wash your head without using water
- Carebag series: Body Fluid Collection Bags with Gelling Liner
By taking care of the hygiene of the body and the environment of the lying patient, we ensure not only comfort but also health and good condition of the skin. It is important to tailor care to the individual needs and capabilities of the patient, taking into account their well-being and safety.
Ventilating the room
Proper ventilation of the room is an important part of caring for a bedridden person. Constantly refreshed air not only has a positive effect on the well-being of the patient but also helps to eliminate unwanted odors. Taking care of regular ventilation of the room allows you to maintain hygiene and freshness of the environment. However, remember to avoid drafts and too large temperature differences. It is best to ventilate briefly but effectively, and then quickly heat the room to a comfortable temperature for the senior.
Changing bed linen
Bedding in contact with the body of a lying person quickly collects moisture and can become a habitat for bacteria. Its regular replacement is not only a matter of aesthetics but above all hygiene. Clean and fresh, it will help prevent skin irritation and discomfort. In addition, it adds comfort and freshness, which has a positive effect on the well-being of seniors. Keeping bedding neat is one of the key responsibilities of a live-in caregiver. We should also remember to carefully examine the skin of the patient for possible bedsores or irritations when changing it.
Taking care of your home
The caregiver who lives with the person in care often becomes the host of the house. It is responsible for maintaining cleanliness, and order and keeping it in a condition that will be safe and comfortable for the person lying down. A neat environment not only has a positive effect on the well-being of the patient but also contributes to their health.
The right diet for a bedridden person
Cooking for a person lying down requires extra attention. It’s not just about preparing tasty dishes, but above all about providing all the necessary nutrients. The diet of a bedridden person should be balanced and adapted to their health needs. A properly selected menu can support the treatment processes, speed up convalescence, and improve the general well-being of the senior. Knowing what to prepare and how to prepare it becomes an invaluable asset for the caregiver.
Exercises that a lying person can do
Physical activity is important for everyone, regardless of age or health condition. Properly selected exercises can help to improve the circulation of a bedridden person, prevent bedsores, and improve their mood. Of course, it’s not about intense workouts, but gentle movements that will help keep your joints and muscles flexible. Moving together under the supervision of a caregiver is also a great way to strengthen the bond with the person you care for and encourage them in everyday life.
Pressure ulcers – how to prevent them
Bedridden people are exposed to many ailments, and one of the most common problems is pressure ulcers. These are skin lesions that occur as a result of long-term pressure on a specific place on the body. It may seem that these are only minor inconveniences, but bedsores can even lead to serious health complications. Proper prevention and awareness of what actions to take to prevent them are crucial for the health and comfort of the bedridden person.
Pressure ulcer care is a fundamental part of caring for a bedridden person. It is not limited only to the use of appropriate preparations, although they are undoubtedly important. Products such as MoliCare skin liquid soap or Dr. Beta Anticubit anti-bedsore lotion are dedicated to the care of skin at risk of bedsores. Ingredients such as panthenol or almond oil moisturize the skin, support its regeneration, and have an antibacterial effect. But that’s not all.
Prevention is key. How to take care of a bedridden person so that they do not have bedsores? You should change your body position regularly to avoid prolonged pressure on one area. Introducing gentle activities that encourage movement can also be beneficial, even if it’s just simple bedside exercises. Keeping your leather clean is the next step – make sure your leather is always dry and clean, and that the materials it comes into direct contact with are breathable and gentle.
In addition, nutrition plays a vital role. A balanced diet rich in vitamins and minerals promotes skin regeneration and prevents the appearance of pressure ulcers. It is worth paying attention to protein, vitamin C, and zinc – these ingredients are essential for a healthy complexion.
A proper approach to caring for a bedridden person is not only a duty but above all an expression of deep empathy and care. Taking care of the comfort and health of the person in care is the most important task of the caregiver, which brings satisfaction and a sense of well-fulfilled duty.
Diseases that can force you to stay in bed
Here is a list of diseases that can lead to prolonged bedridden:
- Strokes – These sudden and unexpected events can lead to partial or complete paralysis. Stroke care often requires rehabilitation, support in daily activities, and monitoring of vital signs.
- Multiple sclerosis is a neurodegenerative disease that affects mobility. People with this condition may require help getting around, as well as support to manage pain and muscle spasms.
- Parkinson’s disease and Alzheimer’s disease are progressive conditions that can lead to mobility difficulties, memory loss, and other neurological problems. Caring for patients affected by them requires patience, constant supervision, and support in daily activities.
- Extensive fractures and diseases such as encephalitis, meningitis, or myelitis often require immobilization to speed up the healing process or reduce the risk of complications.
- Heart and respiratory diseases are conditions that can limit a patient’s performance, making it unsafe or impossible to get out of bed.
- Cancer in advanced stages and certain metabolic diseases and infections can cause general weakness of the body, which makes the patient need to rest in a lying position.
- Chronic fatigue syndrome, depression, and certain mental disorders, although not always associated with physical injury, can leave the patient without the strength or will to get out of bed.
It is worth noting that these diseases do not always lead to prolonged bed rest. It depends on the severity of the disease, its course, and the individual characteristics of the patient.
Talking to the family about the patient’s preferences
It would seem that when a loved one goes into a state that greatly limits their mobility, many things become impossible for them. This, however, does not preclude you from taking up interesting activities and making your dreams come true. The key is to know your client’s desires and what they liked to do in the past and what they may not have had time to do. That’s why it’s so important to talk to your family.
When considering the wishes and needs of a person lying down, it is worth asking for details: who would they like to meet? Are there any unvisited places she would like to see? Or are there any events that would make her happy? Even if certain activities seem unattainable, it is worth looking for creative solutions. Maybe there is an option to transport the sick person to the garden or the park. Often, such outings, although logistically demanding, bring great joy and relief.
How to effectively organize the time of a bedridden person?
Caring for a bedridden person requires not only medical skills but above all empathy and understanding of the patient’s needs. Lying in one place for a long time can lead to feelings of loneliness and depression. For this reason, it is important to organize your time well and take care of the variety of moments you spend together.
Organization of visits
Regular visits from family and friends can significantly improve the mood and well-being of a bedridden person. When planning a visit, it is worth paying attention to the needs of the person in charge and adjusting the hours to make them the most comfortable for them. It is also a good idea to make sure that they are evenly distributed over time so that the patient can enjoy the presence of loved ones throughout the week.
While watching television can be a source of comfort in lonely moments, it is worth considering other ways to spend time. Board games, crosswords, or cards are a great way to have fun together and develop cognitive skills. Looking through old photos, reminiscing, or listening to your favorite music are activities that connect and build a bond.
Maybe it’s a good idea to organize a screening of your mentee’s favorite films. Or does he have a passion for puzzles? It’s a great way to focus your attention and concentrate. In addition, manual work, such as creating cards, decorations, or arranging bouquets, can bring a lot of joy and satisfaction, as well as give meaning to the following days.
Remember to adapt the activities to the individual needs and abilities of the bedridden person, while taking care of their comfort and safety. Time spent together will not only make the days more pleasant for the mentee but will also bring satisfaction to the caregiver from a job well done.