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Skin Care Tips To Prevent Bed Sores

Bed Sores: Understand the problem

Bedsores or pressure sores are ulcers that happen on areas of skin that are under pressure for a long time. Commonly found in people who are bed-ridden, immobile for long, unconscious or unable to sense pain. Constant pressure on a particular part of the skin like the buttocks, back, heel of the feet, shoulder blades, back of the head, sides of the knees and others, leads to the pressure injuries also called as decubitus ulcers.

Lack of blood circulation in areas of skin which is under continuous pressure is the main reason for such injuries to occur, although poor skin care, inappropriate sleeping positions when bed-ridden, malnutrition, diabetes adds up to the severity of the bed sores.

How do Bed sores occur?

Reduction in blood supply for hours together in the skin and underlying tissues will result in death of the skin, followed by painful red spots that eventually turn purple. Such soreness of skin when left untreated will result in infections and can take months or years to heal.

Initial stages of bed sores can be observed and treated at home whilst the advanced stages need medical assistance:

Prevention of Bed Sores:

Movement :

Whether the person infected with bed sores is on the wheelchair or bed-ridden, the care-taker has to make sure the person is moved / changed positions at regular time intervals to reduce the intensity of the injury.

Observation:

Once you know the person is prone to such injuries, take precautions by keeping the skin dry and clean. Keep checking for signs of developing bed sores.

Cushions/Beds:

Equip the room of your beloved one with special cushions or mattresses filled with air/water, specially designed for such cases that help in reducing pressure on the affected area. Sheepskin proves to be a very effective spread for such cases.

Awareness:

Educate the care-taker of bed sores patient and let the person have keen observation on any such occurrences.

Meal-plan:

Manage the diet of the person by encouraging fluids, food rich in Vitamin C, Vitamin E, proteins, minerals and zinc. Make it a nutrient-dense meal that promotes skin care. Avoid sugary foods and smoking.

Massage:

Using Vitamin E creams, massage the unaffected areas(arms, legs) of skin regularly to improve the blood circulation. Essential oil drops can be added to this which is good for the nervous system as well.

Other than these, the person affected can try to do small physical exercises or physiotherapy depending on his ability, to avoid further damage.

Home Remedies:

Below mentioned are a few home-remedies that can be tried for initial stages of bed sores and thus preventing it from advancing to infections:

Clean Regularly:

Wash the affected area with a gentle soap and water regularly. You can also use salt solution (salt dissolved in water) for this. After it dries, apply talcum powder to keep the area dry.

Turmeric paste:

Turmeric is a miraculous Indian spice that fastens the healing process of any wound. Make a paste of turmeric by mixing it with water and apply on the area affected to heal the wound and promote skin growth.

Sugar solution:

Apply some sugar solution or sugar paste (honey mixed with sugar) on the wound and bandage it. This helps in absorbing fluid from the wound, promoting new tissue growth.

Raw Papaya:

Raw papaya paste, rich in exfoliating properties when applied on the wounds will help remove the dead tissues thereby reducing risk of infection.

Aloe vera:

Generously rub the aloe vera gel on the injury for 5-10 minutes. Wipe it with a clean cloth once it dries. Repeat this for more than one time in a day.

Goldenseal Tea:

Cleaning the bed sores with goldenseal tea twice a day helps in reducing the injuries.

All, said and done, higher infected bed sores will take months / years to heal and need medical assistance. Hence, take care of your loved ones, take precautions and let the bed sores succumb to your home remedies at an early stage.

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