Fit, Lean & Beautiful #44
By, Afua Serwah Osei-Bonsu
Children trying to care for an ailing parent after a roof spill may encounter a unique set of ideas for wound care, psychological care and preoccupation, after care and assistance to ease stress of the injury around the house. The first thing to do is rebuild them as best you can and talk to their nurses and doctors and let them know someone loves them and offer suggestions about their care. Doctors can rebuild white blood cells with Zinc, red blood cells with Iron, they can rebuild joints with glucosamine rich “Joint Juice,” rebuild joints with steroids, rebuild new skin using Vaseline or Triple Ointment to the wound areas. One thing you can request from your doctor or nurse is “Ensure” nutritional dietary supplement drink which will quickly give them a lot more strength. It may be good to bring them a few food stuffs from the outside while in the hospital if they are rejecting hospital foods. A parent who fears dying may like strawberries and bananas, soft granola bars or even lemon cookies. A good thing to bring is saltines for nausea.
A good thing to do to perk up their spirit while in the hospital is to groom and bath them. Bring them back to life. Help them to feel fresh, attractive and loved. Ask the nurse for a razor and shaving cream, comb their hair. Some nurses may fear elderly parents are suicidal and don’t like to distribute razors.
What’s good coming home from the hospital is to think of intellectual occupation or diversion. Researching a book list can be good or purchasing books for a loved one is great. Also perhaps getting them set up in an online class while convalescing can be good and encouraging PT as soon as possible. PT will help them not to lose any range of motion or compensate for pain but to invigorate the body and give it a good, “I’m alive!” When you compensate for pain, you may ruin your walk, for example, and need to relearn your walking.
One key thing to do when a family member is returning home from the hospital is to get lots of push carts to relieve burden of getting shopping into the house. Basic Walmart shopping carts can go from car to cupboards and relieve the burden of carrying lots of shopping bags.
You can talk to your family about after- after care when they have healed wounds and may desire to see a plastic surgeon to remove scars if possible. It’s worthwhile to make an appointment with your local plastic surgeon for a consultation for about $250 to see how they may help with your care and overall appearance after an injury.
Things to focus on are healing, strength, ease, stamina, then beauty. Aspirins or heat or cold packs can be good for pain after coming home and may help with inflammation. An herbal headache and soothing tea may be in the mint family or soft drinks like Vernos may be comforting and help with nausea.
You may like having white sheets so you can make at home, a hospital bed, and sterilize it with bleach. Be prepared for surgical aftercare with lots of gauzes and bandages and ace etc. that may be needed if wounds are draining or bleeding. Sometimes you’re leaving the hospital and don’t get enough direction about what may happen with your surgical site once you arrive home-so be prepared.
If you took a spill carefully watch your urine for internal bleeding. Another good thing to think about is getting compression stockings once you have been bedridden for circulation problems.
A loved ones care may surpass their family’s abilities and they may need long term care or visiting angels. Consult your local telephone book or internet to see what’s available in your region.
Good gifts for a loved one are light reading, grooming, good advice about their care, suggestions to nurses, Brita not to carry heavy water bottles, dollies and help with heavy lifting and cleaning.
You can give them little tips like taking iron with orange juice for better assimilation. They may also like some Himalaya Ayurvedic Lotions or Chandrika Ayurvedic Soaps to bless their body and love themselves deeply.
Sometimes after sutures heal, you need braces to realign backs and knees etc. Just know, a shower can make a patient who wants to die, want to live. Oranges are also a really healing food to give a patient or family member.
Sometimes an accident can promote to a family member greater compassion. Their personality may even improve with an accident. I read something interesting in Amy Tan’s, “Joy Luck Club” in reference to children “rising to expectations.” Rising to expectations may be true of many conditions and life in general.
Your children may be weepy and pessimistic with fear for the worst. Help the patient to get into their care and aftercare, to intellectualize and even become a go-getter with a list of phone numbers to doctors to get them going.
Pray for them. Ask people to pray for them and guide a positive wave of love towards them through the universe.