One of the main concerns following surgery for many seniors is how they will be able to care for themselves during the healing process. Many wish to remain in the comforts of their own home—homes which may have upstairs bedrooms. Not knowing how mobile they will be following the operation can leave many seniors worried and anxious at a time they should be focusing on health and healing. You can help them stay in a positive mindset by preparing their home and environment before they return.
Step 1: Talk to their health care providers.
Your first step is to talk to their primary health care provider and recovery team. This may include their physical therapist. While they may not be able to provide you with exact information as to the state they believe your parent will be in following surgery, they can give you a general idea of what usual limitations are following this type of procedure. This, then, will give you a place to start.
Step 2: Arrange their living situation.
If you determine that they will have limited mobility, you will need to arrange their living situation accordingly. This means moving their bedroom downstairs if it is upstairs and providing a portable commode if they are expected to have limited mobility from bed to toilet. A portable bed can be rented. Ensure that it is the correct height so that your parent’s feet touch the floor when they sit on the edge of the bed.
Step 3: Take stock of their kitchen.
Place commonly used items in easy to reach places. This may mean that their counters are a little crowded, but remind them it’s only a temporary solution while they heal. Make sure that they have all essentials such as toilet paper, toothpaste, shampoo and other personal items. Purchase food that is easy to prepare such as pre-made salads, fresh fruit salads, nuts and low-fat cheeses and yogurt.
Step 4: Prevent falls in the bathroom.
The bathroom is one of the main areas of the home where falls occur. You can minimize this chance by using a raised toilet seat and installing grab bars in the shower and by the toilet. Place non-skid bath mats in the shower and by the sink.
Step 5: Look at overall home safety.
Take a good look at their home in general. Walk common used pathways looking for tripping or slipping hazards. This includes removing throw rugs, loose wires that cross paths or moving furniture so that it does not intrude. Make sure their home has good lighting and consider placing nightlights in strategic locations.
Home Care Provider.
For the first several days to several weeks, your parent may very well need assistance to ensure their safety and well-being. A home care provider can assist with the daily tasks of living as well as provide transportation to appointments and offer the companionship and care that is so vital to the healing process.
If you or an aging loved one are considering home care in Spring Branch, TX, contact the caring staff at Personal Caregiving Services at 832-564-0338. Providing Care in Houston, Bellaire, West University Place, Katy, and Sugar Land and the surrounding areas.
In 1989 after selling his family owned food service business, Mr. Gerber pursued his compassion for the elderly by completing his geriatric education and training requirements to be a licensed nursing home administrator (LNFA) from the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston.Previously he received his undergraduate business degree from the University of Texas at Austin and his Masters in business administration (MBA) from the University of Houston.In 2003, Mr. Gerber earned his Certification to be a Senior Advisor (CSA).
Sid Gerber is a Google Verified Author
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