Medical advancements have made knee and hip replacements a common occurrence for older adults and many times, family and close friends provide in home care for their senior loved ones with recovery. They can get the patient back to independent living as quickly as possible. Think about the following suggestions if you’re going to assist with the in home care of someone you love after a surgical procedure:
In advance of surgery, create a recovery room on the first floor of the patient’s home, so stairs aren’t necessary. Be sure the bed is of proper height and covered with clean linens. Add some fluffy pillows. Stand the crutches or walker in near proximity to the bed. Arrange gathered toiletries and personal necessities visibly bedside. When there’s no easy access to a bathroom, rent a portable chair potty for the first few days or so.
Prescription medications will be necessary for a while after surgery, but it’s essential that seniors take them exactly as prescribed. Perhaps you can arrange to speak with the surgeon in advance of surgery or at least immediately afterwards, so you are aware of prescription details and can create a schedule for doses.
After the replacement surgery, wound care will be important for your loved one. You’ll have to look for any increased swelling or inflammation at the wound site, and call the doctor if it doesn’t look right. Keep bandages and needed supplies on hand for you or your elderly adult to change the dressings.
Help with as many household chores as possible. Let your loved one focus on their rest and recovery. Small things help, like bringing them the mail daily, or doing a load of laundry and tidying up their room or the rest of the house. Errands like grocery shopping or finding medical supplies may be necessary, too. Cook healthy meals for their best nourishment.
Doctor appointments after surgery can’t be missed because these are crucial to recovery. You may need to make adjustments to your own schedule in order to assist in transportation.
Hip and knee replacement surgeries are followed by a rehab plan with exercises prescribed by the physical therapist. Sometimes people have a hard time with these exercises, either because of their pain or continued fatigue, but you can be the encouragement they need for their recovery by creating a consistent exercise schedule and being there for them.
Replacement surgeries have considerable recovery time and it may be more than you or your family can feasibly provide for your loved one. Rather than stress yourself, call for in home care to assist in the recovery of your loved one.
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