Monday, June 3, 2013

Pressure Ulcer Prevention

A pressure ulcer, sometimes called a "bed sore", is an injury to your skin that is caused by pressure. Sitting or lying in one position without moving puts pressure on your skin and slows down blood flow. When blood flow slows down, skin and tissue can die and result in a pressure ulcer.

An easy way to remember pressure ulcer prevention is:
1. Take special care of your skin
Keep your skin hydrated with mosturizers, especially after a bath or shower.
Skin should be washed with warm water. Avoid hot water. Use gentle cleansers to minimize dryness.
Avoid aggressice massage or massaging over bony areas such as hips.
Replace soaps with skin cleansing products

2. Keep turning and repositioning
When sitting:
Adjust your weight every 15 minutes
Use a chair cushion while sitting

When lying:
Turn from your back to either side every 2 hours or less.
Keep the head of the bed as low as possible while in bed.
Use pillows or wedges to help take pressure off a certain area, especially your heels
Talk to your healthcare professional about getting a special mattress or overlay.
3. Keep your skin clean and dry and pay special attention to incontinence
If you are incontinenet, make sure your skin is protected from urine and feces
Clean skin well at each time of soiling
Apply a protective cream to your skin to prevent urine or feces from irritating it.
Use underpads or briefs that are absorbent and provide a quick drying surface for skin.

4. Eat healthy foods and drink prenty of water. Optimize nutrition. Nutrition is very important in preventing pressure ulcers.