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Preventing Bedsores

Often, with good caregiving, bedsores can be prevented. The best way to prevent bedsores is to re-position a resident frequently.  Bedsores generally develop on the bony areas of the body, like the tailbone, heels, shoulders, and elbows.

According to the Mayo Clinic, to prevent bedsores:

  • People in beds should be re-positioned every two hours (caregivers can use pillows or pads to help the resident stay in their new position if needed)
  • People in wheelchairs should shift their weight every 15 minutes and change positions hourly

People who use wheelchairs, or are bed-bound, can also obtain special pads and mattresses to help prevent bedsores.

Caregivers can also keep alert for bedsores by checking residents’ skin frequently for breakdown or reddening.

Other prevention strategies include:

  • Keeping both the patient and their sheets as clean and dry as possible
  • Changing wet clothes or adult sanitary pads as quickly as possible
  • Stretching out sheets to prevent wrinkles
  • Adding foam pads to cushion parts of the resident’s body, like their ankles, or parts of their bed, like the rails
  • Making sure the resident is eating and drinking well. This will help keep their skin as healthy and strong as possible

If you need support or have any questions, please contact us for immediate assistance.

References

“Bedsores (Pressure Ulcers).”  April 25, 2017.  The Mayo Clinic.Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research.  Available at http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/bed-sores/home/ovc-20315615

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