Once people are discharged from the hospital, they continue to remain vulnerable to additional health issues until they’ve fully recovered. The majority of hospital readmissions occur during the first month after discharge, and seniors are the largest demographic to be readmitted. Knowing about the most common reasons for 30-day hospital readmissions places you in the best position to take control over protecting your aging loved one’s health.
Congestive Heart Failure
Heart failure occurs when the heart isn’t capable of pumping enough blood through the body. Multiple factors increase the risk of congestive heart failure after leaving the hospital. While some seniors already have heart disease, others may develop complications as their bodies continue to fight off illness or recover from surgery. Seniors should follow their aftercare instructions regarding diet and exercise recommendations, and someone should stay nearby to watch for signs of heart failure, such as labored breathing and sudden swelling or unexplained weight gain.
This health condition occurs when fluid builds up in the lungs, and it can often follow a lengthy period of bedrest. Your loved one may get pneumonia in the hospital or develop it shortly after discharge due to increased exposure to germs during the hospital stay. Seniors with pneumonia need someone to remind them to take their medication regularly. As is the case with heart failure, your loved one should have a caregiver help out at home to make sure the symptoms don’t get worse after discharge.
This condition occurs when an infection reaches the bloodstream. Although precautions are taken to prevent infections, your loved one may develop sepsis if his or her body is unable to fight off germs following surgery or the treatment of a major wound. Once your loved one is home, anyone who comes in contact with him or her needs to understand proper sanitation and hygiene measures for effective germ control. Your loved one may also need assistance with wound care and transportation to follow-up appointments so a medical professional can monitor the healing process and check for signs of infection.
A trained professional caregiver can closely monitor your loved one for post-hospitalization complications. When they’re looking for reliable elderly home care, La Mesa families need to make sure their loved ones are well cared for. The expertly trained caregivers from Coast Care Partners are available around the clock to keep your loved one safe and comfortable.
Traumatic Brain Injuries
Some of the most common reasons seniors go back to the hospital are completely preventable and sometimes unrelated to the reasons for their initial hospital stays. For instance, your loved one could sustain a traumatic brain injury from falling down if he or she has difficulty getting out of bed. Make sure to have someone stay with your loved one until all fatigue and dizziness have passed.
The first month after a hospital discharge also represents a major transition. Most likely, your loved one left the hospital with new medications to manage his or her health condition. Your loved one may also be making lifestyle changes that make it difficult to keep up with a medication regimen. You can help your loved one remember to take medications and avoid dangerous mix-ups by establishing a support system that includes professional in-home care.
Professional caregivers can be a wonderful source of support for seniors who are recovering after being discharged from the hospital. No matter what their aging loved ones need, from assistance with exercise and mobility to compassionate Alzheimer’s home care, La Mesa families can trust the professionals from Coast Care Partners. To create a customized home care plan for your loved one, give us a call at 619-354-2544 today.