With age comes a long list of infections that can affect the elderly. These Days diabetes, blood pressure, and other co-morbidities are commonly found in the elderly populace. These co-morbidities make them vulnerable to infections.
It is paramount for the private nurse at home to know and understand the infections that affect the elderly. These infections can manifest into something more severe if not treated properly.
The private nurse at home must stay alert all the time and notice changes in the elderly’s health if any. Prevention is always better than cure and, a private nurse is needed to take care of the elderly in their golden years.
These are the five common infections that affect older adults:
Aging skin and its inability to heal and resist disease are expected in the elderly. These skin infections include:
The private nurse must be vigilant to any unusual itching, lesions, or pain. Most skin infections are treatable, and shingles are preventable with an accessible vaccine or treatment.
The private nurse can prevent skin infections in your loved ones by practicing good hygiene, such as proper handwashing and sponge bathing.
Urinary Tract Infections (UTIs)
Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are the most common bacterial infection in the elderly. The use of catheters or conditions like diabetes can increase the risk of UTIs in the elderly. Changes in behaviour, like confusion or worsening of dementia, or the onset of urinary incontinence, are typical warning signs. Pain or discomfort don’t necessarily occur with UTIs in elders.
If you suspect a UTI, a doctor can conduct a urinalysis or further testing to confirm the diagnosis. The doctor can then prescribe antibiotics if required. The private nurse should make sure that the patient is drinking plenty of water to help prevent UTIs.
The weakened immune system in the elderly, along with other co-morbidities, raises the risk of severe complications from influenza, one of which is pneumonia. Influenza is highly transmissible by coughing and sneezing; the risk of infection increases in a closed environment like a nursing home.
So, monitoring their symptoms becomes crucial to avoid complications like pneumonia. A private nurse at home helps the monitoring the symptoms and makes notes of the condition. Cough, chills, and fever are the typical symptoms of influenza, but they may differ from person to person.
Flu vaccinations are mostly suggested for the elderly to prevent infection. However, a physician may prescribe antiviral medicines for those already infected.
Age-related changes to digestion and gastrointestinal flora put elders at increased risk of developing gastrointestinal infections. The most common gastrointestinal disorders are Helicobacter pylori, which can cause fever, nausea, and upper abdominal pain leading to long-term conditions like gastritis; Clostridium difficile is also an increasingly common diarrhea-causing infection, primarily due to antibiotic treatments that suppress the healthy gastrointestinal flora.
The private nurse at home prevents such infections. If they do occur, the condition is treated promptly and effectively under their care.
The elderly are at greater risk for pneumonia for various reasons, like changes in lung capacity, increased exposure to disease in community settings, and increased vulnerability due to co-morbidities like cardiopulmonary disease or diabetes.
Pneumonia symptoms like cough, chills, and fever are less frequent in the elderly. However, non-respiratory symptoms like confusion or delirium are more common. Doctors usually prescribe antibiotic treatment for bacterial pneumonia. Pneumococcal vaccine can effectively prevent pneumonia, which is highly advised for nursing home habitats.
The infections in elders do differ from person to person. However, it’s crucial for you to prevent such infections so that your loved ones don’t suffer the long treatments that come with such conditions. To avoid such complications appointing a private nurse who cares for your loved ones is crucial.
At care24, understand the struggles one faces providing care for their loved ones. The elderly of the house needs constant attention if they are dealing with chronic pain or an illness. You cannot stay by their side every day, but you can give the best care at the comforts of their home by appointing a caregiver or a private nurse who will care for your loved ones in your absence.
We have processes in place that help us to find the proper private nurse for our loved ones. Our strict screening of nurses with appropriate background checks helps us bring you the best nurses. Our tech-based approach has made tracking private nurses and caregivers easier through a user-friendly app that allows customers to be a peace. Our experienced team makes sure to consider all of your requirements and allocate you the best nurse.
Check out the services section to know more about our services at care24- your most trusted home health care provider.