Infections can be dangerous for anyone, but can be particularly so for elderly adults. Seniors tend to have immune systems that are lower and less effective than those of younger adults, meaning that they are more vulnerable to infections and have a more difficult time fighting off those infections if they do occur. These infections can lead to an extremely dangerous condition known as sepsis. Sometimes referred to as blood poisoning, sepsis is actually an extreme reaction of the body to an infection that can be fatal within only days of the onset of an infection. Elderly adults make up approximately 65 percent of cases of sepsis throughout the United States each year.
As a family caregiver you can help protect your senior from the potentially devastating consequences of an infection by being vigilant about their health and recognizing when they might be suffering from an infection. This will enable them to get the prompt care and management that they need to overcome the infection.
Some signs and symptoms of an infection include:
- Redness around area of injury.
- Heat or swelling around area of injury.
- Altered state of consciousness.
It is important to note that elderly adults do not always exhibit the same types of symptoms of infections as younger adults and the symptoms can vary widely depending on its location and severity. For example, younger adults might expect that if they are suffering from pneumonia they will have a fever, yet approximately 65 percent of elderly adults with the condition do not have a fever upon seeking medical care. It is very important that if you notice any signs or symptoms in your parent that concern you and that you think might indicate infection, you seek medical attention for them promptly.
Being a family caregiver for an elderly adult is challenging, and you may encounter times when you feel that you are not fulfilling all of your senior’s needs, or that they would benefit from additional support and care. Whether this is because you live at a distance or have a schedule that is so busy that you feel you are not able to be with your parent as often as you would like to be, or you have challenges and limitations that keep you from handling all of their care needs as efficiently as they need, this can leave you feeling stressed and like you are not giving your parent what they deserve. Fortunately, elder care can help. An elderly home care services provider can step in to fill any care gaps that might exist and offer your parent support, care, and assistance specifically tailored to your parent’s individual challenges and needs so that they can stay healthy, happy, comfortable, and safe, while pursuing as much independence as possible. This not only improves their quality of life, but also eases your stress and enables you to focus your time and energy on them in the best way possible.
If you or an aging loved one are considering elder care in Durham, NC or the surrounding areas, please contact the friendly staff at HomeChoice Home Care Services. Call today (919) 847-5622