Bedsores or pressure ulcers sometimes develop on the bodies of older adults with limited mobility. Those living in nursing homes may spend so much time sitting in the same chair or lying in bed that they develop pressure ulcers because of the constant push of their body against that bed or chair.
Bedsores start as red, inflamed skin and may eventually become open wounds that affect the musculature and deep tissue in the surrounding area. They often develop in places like the back of the heels, the back of the head and on the buttocks.
People with loved ones in nursing homes may fail to understand the true risks of bedsores and why they are not something that you should ignore just because they are somewhat common.
Bedsores can cause major infections
Perhaps the most significant medical concern associated with bed sores is the potential for a systemic infection. Once the bedsore compromises the skin, bacterial infections may soon result.
Older adults often have a harder time recovering from infections, meaning that your loved one may require extensive medical support, and their life may even be endangered by a severe and untreated infection caused by bedsores.
Not only is it important to identify and treat bedsores for the comfort of nursing home residents but also to help ensure they aren’t at risk of illness.
Bedsores are usually the result of neglect
The other real concern about bedsores is that they are a bright red warning flag of inadequate support and possibly neglect at a nursing home. A bedsore won’t develop after just a few hours of sitting in one position. It is an indicator that your loved one has gone extended lengths of time without someone helping them move or providing them with cushioning or other forms of preventative care.
Proper movement, cleanliness and support will drastically reduce the likelihood of bed sores developing or worsening after they first form. Especially when bedsores reach more advanced stages or develop infections, your loved one may have also experienced neglect that affected many other aspects of their daily life.
Understanding why bed sores are a serious concern might inspire you to take action when your loved one experiences nursing home neglect.