How to care for an old patient?
Q: Could you please offer some relevant suggestions for patient care at home for my mother, 91 years old, for incontinence and improvement in paralysis condition. She had a stroke nearly three years ago, and has lost the movement of her right limbs. Her speech has also been considerably affected. Persistent physiotherapy has not made any improvement. In addition, she has also developed frequent bedwetting. Her eyesight is very poor. She cannot see anything clearly on the TV screen.
A:Disposable diapers are available in the market now and these are important in taking care of soemone in your mothers condition. You must get the right size for her and change them as and when they are wet. This way she will be saved from getting extensive skin problems and her bed will remain dry. The other method would be to have a catheter inserted by a doctor or nurse but this is uncomfortable and there is a high risk of infection. You have to be very diligent about preventing bedsores which are painful and difficult to heal. For this change your mothers position several times during the day and night and give her a gentle massage (sometimes with eau de cologne) at least three times a day and a sponging with soap and warm water every alternate day. Also there are special mattresses available to prevent bedsores. Any good surgical store will have them. If she is able to stand try to make her walk and give a rubber ball to squeeze to improve the strength of her paralysed limbs. It would be good if you could call in a physiotherapist to help you understand the kind of excercises your mother requires. Also it is important to hold her hand as often and as long as you can. This gives a sense of reassurance and security.