Pressure ulcers, or bedsores, come from skin or tissue damage over bony parts of the body. These injuries often occur over time through too much physical stress.
Bedsores have been common in nursing homes for quite some time. Many of the residents are susceptible to deep-tissue injuries to begin with, which makes their care all the more important. Anyone who has a loved one in a nursing home should consider the following factors.
The National Center of Biotechnology Information (NCBI) reported that bedsores are less of a problem in nursing homes than they used to be. However, long-term care facilities have a bedsore prevalence of 11.3% while acute-care facilities have an 8.8% prevalence. This suggests that the more time a patient spends in a nursing home, the more likely he or she is to develop pressure ulcers.
The NCBI found that pressure ulcers are more likely to affect patients who have more bedridden days. On top of this, medications that sometimes decrease mobility (such as sleeping pills) have a correlation with bedsore prevalence. Staff should consistently reposition their patients to maintain skin health and blood flow, which are crucial to fighting off ulcers.
When it comes to bedsore prevention, a nursing home’s leadership might be even more essential than people realize. An NCBI study showed that the more hours a nursing home director works with patients, the fewer bedsore cases there usually are. The director’s impact is often higher than that of anyone else in the facility.
Despite their frequency, bedsores are very preventable when a nursing home follows the right protocol. People can help protect their loved ones by regularly checking with the facility and voicing their concerns.