Why Is Rehospitalization Bad for Aging Adults?

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Statistics indicate up to 33 percent of elderly people are readmitted to hospitals after an initial stay. Certain medical conditions or errors in medical care remain common factors that necessitate readmission. However, readmissions are potentially hazardous for the elderly, and many factors contribute to the lack of safety and wellbeing.

Nosocomial Infections

Nosocomial infections are illnesses acquired during hospital stays. Statistics indicate 59 percent of adults over the age of 60 acquire infections while in hospitals. Repeated hospitalizations increase the risk. Seniors living with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, diabetes, or heart conditions are already in a weakened physical state, and the danger rises with a weakened immune system, which is common in older adults. During hospitalization, seniors commonly receive intravenous fluids and medications. They might also need bladder catheters. Either invasive procedure serves as a portal through which harmful microorganisms can enter the body.

A professional caregiver can monitor your loved one for post-hospitalization complications, including infections. When searching for reliable homecare agencies, families want to know their senior loved one will be well taken care of. At Home Care Assistance, our expertly trained caregivers are available around the clock to assist with tasks around the house, provide transportation to medical appointments and social events, and much more.

Sleep Disruptions

Many seniors cannot get a full night of rest secondary to chronic pain, urinary problems, or cognitive impairment. While in the hospital, sleep is further interrupted when medical staff routinely check vital signs or take blood samples for diagnostic testing. Other disturbances include the noise and commotion that occur during emergencies. Hallway and room noises are common while housekeeping staff perform their daily duties. Phones ring day and night. The stiffness of hospital beds or limited ability to move secondary to IVs, catheters, and other medical equipment might also inhibit sleep, which is vital for recovery.

Some seniors only require help with a few daily tasks so they can maintain their independence. However, those living with serious illnesses may need more extensive assistance. Luckily, there is professional live-in care Green Valley, AZ, seniors can rely on. Home can be a safer and more comfortable place for your loved one to live with the help of an expertly trained and dedicated live-in caregiver.

Separation Anxiety

Seniors separated from their loved ones and a familiar environment are at risk of developing anxiety or depression. Those with cognitive impairment are particularly susceptible secondary to the fear and confusion they often experience. They may then exhibit difficult behaviors that require medications with side effects, and they might also need to be physically restrained for their own protection, which increases agitation.

Soft Tissue Degradation

The skin of older adults is typically more fragile and at risk for damage from tears. Elderly people who cannot change their body positions while in bed require the assistance of medical staff members. Seniors who aren’t helped with repositioning every two to three hours are at risk for developing pressure sores and other skin problems. The risk of compromise increases if they’re malnourished, dehydrated, or incontinent.

Functional Impairment

Researchers from the University of California, San Francisco report hospitalizations cause an increase in mental or physical deterioration in older adults. The problem has been noted in up to 33 percent of seniors over the age of 70 and 50 percent of the time in those over the age of 85. The combination of disturbed sleep, unappealing meals, and days of being bedridden have been shown to cause lasting effects in seniors.

A professional caregiver can be a wonderful source of support for a senior who’s recovering after being hospitalized. Green Valley homecare experts are available to provide high-quality care to seniors on an as-needed basis. From assistance with mobility and exercise to providing transportation to the doctor’s office and social events, there are a variety of ways professional caregivers can help your aging loved one continue to live independently. If your loved one needs assistance with the challenges of aging, reach out to one of our knowledgeable, compassionate Care Managers today at 520-625-2050.