Nowadays, cancer patients undergo treatment as outpatients. They are not required to stay in hospital. But, cancer treatment can be very painful, debilitating, exhausting and depressing. They do need all the support and encouragement they can get from family and friends.
So, how do they get what they need?
Much research has been done on this subject. Researchers have found that cancer survivors do much better with strong emotional support. Patients in remission are found to do the following:
– Adjust better to the life changes brought about by cancer
– Develop a more positive outlook
– Feel less depressed
– Enjoy a better quality of life
So, a cancer patient’s family and friends can, and do, make a huge difference in the lives of cancer patients.
So, what can you do?
Spend more time with your friend, find out how their daily life is being affected and changing because of this disease. Keep your friend busy with different activities and consider whether these will need to change as the cancer treatment carries on. Personalizing the help and care to what your friend needs and likes doing, is the best way to support your friend.
You can show your friend how much you care. Send short, frequent notes or make regular calls. Ask questions about the treatment and state of health and mind. Return their calls and messages promptly. Be patient with them, chemo can be very tiring and nauseating: your friend could be irritable, go off food, exhausted and depressed. Be there for him or her.
Cancer patients can feel very isolated. They look different, they feel different. Chemo causes hair to fall out. Faces can look pale and washed out. Do not let the way the patient looks and behaves change your behavior with them. Make short, regular visits instead of long, infrequent ones. Visit your friend as often as you can – and as often as he or she wants you to. Distract them. Make them feel like they used to before cancer struck. Give the caregiver a beak, your friend will appreciate that. And it will give you a chance to spend more quality time with your friend. Share music you both enjoy. Watch a TV show or a movie. Read a book together. There are many more things you can do to make a cancer patient undergoing chemo feel much better. Here are a few more activities and help you can offer them:
– Learn to listen. It helps the patient to come to a decision about treatments and medications.
– Take notes, be an advocate and accompany your friend to doctors’ appointments and treatment.
– Help and encourage your friend to read about others who blog about what they are going through, offering valuable advice through their writings.
– Suggest your friend communicates via email with other cancer sufferers about how they are coping. Much valuable advice can be exchanged in this manner.
– A light-hearted approach to the situation helps to keep the patient in a better frame of mind.
– Distract the patient, bring little gifts, nice treats to eat, books and magazines to read, all this will provide some welcome relief.
– Make the patent feel that getting help is not an obligation. Many people feel that asking for help means someone is doing the patient a favour.
– If there are kids in the house, try and make life feel as normal as possible. Your help with keeping the children occupied and distracted will really help the patient.
It’s a common question: What is palliative care? Put simply, Palliative care is a specialized form of medical treatment that focusses on offering relief from the pain, symptoms and stress of serious injury or operation. Palliative care is also meant for people suffering from a terminal illness where a cure is not always possible and for those who have suffered, or are suffering, a complicated illness and need their symptoms controlled. This type of care is also provided for seriously ill patients who can no longer hope for a cure and need to be kept comfortable and as pain-free as possible during the remaining days of his or her life. Palliative care also includes caring for people who are nearing the end of their lives. In such cases, it’s also called end of life care.
The goal of providing this treatment is to improve the patient’s quality of life. Palliative care sets out to treat or manage pain and other physical symptoms. Typically, it will also help with any psychological, social or spiritual needs. The objective of palliative care is to help the patient, and everyone affected by the patient’s illness, to achieve the best quality of life. The patient could receive palliative care along with other illness related treatments, such as chemotherapy or radiotherapy.
Though, sometimes, palliative care can be provided in the patient’s home, it still needs the ministrations and treatment afforded by highly skilled and specially trained doctors, nursing staff and other specialists who work in tandem with the patient’s usual doctors, to give an additional layer of support to the patient and his family. Palliative care is relevant and appropriate, regardless of age and stage of treatment, and can be offered along with remedial treatment.
Generally speaking, palliative care is offered to people suffering or recovering from serious illnesses such a cancer, congestive heart failure (CHF), chronic obstructive pulmonary disease COPD), kidney disease, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) amongst many others. The palliative care offered in these situations treats pain, depression, breathing difficulty, tiredness, constipation, nausea, lack of appetite, sleeping problems, anxiety and other distressing symptoms. The palliative care provided gives the patient the strength and fortitude to carry on with daily life – in a better frame of mind and body.
Ideally speaking, the palliative care team should work together with the patient, his or her family and the patient’s other doctors. And, along with treating the symptoms of the condition, the palliative care team should also spend time communicating with the patient and his or her family. The palliative care team is vested in providing help, support and care – every step of the way.
To sum up, palliative care does the following:
• Improves the quality of life
• Offers relief from pain and other disturbing symptoms
• Supports life but considers dying as inevitable
• Doesn’t hasten or delay death
• Combines psychological, emotional and spiritual aspects of care
• Provides a support system to help patients live as actively as possible until death
• Provides a support system to the family
• Can be applied to the earlier stages of an illness, along with other treatment that is aimed at prolonging life
Finally! The day has arrived and you are taking your new born baby home! You are excited, thrilled, scared and worried – in equal measure. Will you drop the baby in the bath water? This sounds funny but isn’t! The number of new mothers who stress about dropping their baby is legion. But, there are other things, that will come very naturally to you. And some things you’ll find incomprehensible and scary. So, here’s a check list that covers the needs of your bundle of joy – and what you need to do to satisfy them.
How to hold your baby
You might feel that your baby is fragile and delicate but don’t be scared to touch, caress, handle or hold your baby. Research has proven that babies who are held more than two hours a day thrive more and cry much less. Since the baby’s neck muscle take a little time to develop, you will need to support your baby’s head whenever you pick her up.
Bathing your baby
This is one of the biggest challenges for a new mother. Before you start, make sure all the bathing supplies are at hand. Use gentle cleansers, shampoo and soap. Give your baby a gentle massage before the bath with baby oil. Studies have shown that a massage can relax your baby, improve the baby’s sleep patterns and calm her down when she gets irritable. Giving your baby a massage is also a great way to bond with your baby. And use baby lotion after you have dried your baby out with soft baby towels or linen. Don’t be afraid to gently wash the soft spot, called fontanels, on your baby’s head.
Don’t be surprised by the number of diaper changes your baby will require. To reduce stress and make life easier, keep plenty of diapers in stock. For the delicate skin of your new born baby, and especially given the heat and humidity of the Indian climate, it is advisable that cotton or linen diapers are used. Disposable diapers should be used while travelling or for visits away from home. Be prepared for nappy rash. Most babies develop diaper rash between 0-2 years of age. If you see any signs of redness, apply a safe zinc oxide based cream on the diaper area. Keep the area clean and as dry as far as possible.
Babies do cry – some of them quite frequently, too. Most babies cry for an average of two hours a day, in the first three months. This is quite normal. It’s not that the baby is sick or anything! Of course, you’ll want to comfort your baby but you also need to know why she is crying. Is your baby hungry? Does the diaper need to be changed? Is the baby sleepy? Is the baby too excited by external stimuli such as lights or noise? To soothe and comfort your baby, hold her to your shoulder while gently rocking her. Sing or speak softly while you rub her back, gently. Try different positions to calm and soothe your baby.
Your baby’s sleep patterns will change as she grows. Newborns sleep a lot right through the 24-hour day, waking up often – both day and night. However, you can still begin to develop a bedtime routine for your baby, as early as six to eight weeks. As your baby grows she will start to combine her sporadic naps into a full night’s sleep with fewer daytime “naps.” You can help her slowly develop a sleeping pattern; you can encourage her to recognize that nighttime is for sleep, not for play.
Being fit, both physically and nutritionally is extremely important when planning for pregnancy as it does not only affect your chances of conception but also the development of the baby. Having a fit body will positively affect the pregnancy and the soon to arrive baby.
Being fit starts with having a healthy diet. It is even more critical when you are planning for pregnancy or if you are pregnant. This does not mean that you need to go on a special diet. All you need to do is ensure that you eat a variety of foods every day to get the right balance of nutrients for you and your baby. Pregnancy is a crucial time for women to eat more iron, calcium, protein, vitamin A, Vitamin B and Vitamin C, Magnesium, Selenium and Zinc Needed in that time. These all nutrition’s are found in the natural foods and natural vegetables and fruits.
Fruits and Vegetables: Fruits and vegetables contain many important nutrients for pregnancy especially, Vitamin C and Folic Acid. Pregnant women need at least 70 mg of Vitamin C daily, which is contained in fruits such as oranges, grapefruits and honeydew, and vegetables such as broccoli, tomatoes, and sprouts.
In order to prevent neural tube defects, 0.4 mg of folic acid per day is recommended. A good source of folic acid can be found in dark green leafy vegetables (other sources of folic acid include legumes, such as black or lima beans, black-eyed peas, and veal). You should have at least 2-4 servings of fruit and 4 or more servings of vegetables daily. Papaya, black grapes and Pineapples are better avoided during pregnancy.
Breads and Grains: The body’s main source of energy for pregnancy comes from the carbohydrates. Whole grain and enriched products provide important nutrients such as iron, B Vitamins, fiber and some protein, even. You can also get the required amount of folic acid from fortified bread and cereal.
Depending on your weight and dietary needs, you should consume anywhere between 6-11 servings (6-11 oz) of breads/grains daily.
Protein: Meat, poultry, fish, eggs and beans contain the protein, B vitamins and iron needed in pregnancy. Your developing baby needs plenty of protein, especially in the second and third trimesters.You will need plenty of protein during pregnancy to keep up the energy levels.
Eggs Packed with protein and vitamins D and B12, these nutritional powerhouses are quick and easy to prepare.Portable and non-perishable, nuts and nut butters are perfect for snacks and excellent sources of protein and healthy fat, which can aid in your baby’s development. Almonds, peanuts and walnuts are all good selections
You should consume at least 3 servings of protein daily.
Dairy Products: At least 1000 mg of calcium is needed daily to support a pregnancy. Calcium is essential for building strong teeth and bones, normal blood clotting, and muscle and nerve function. Since your developing baby requires a considerable amount of calcium, your body will take calcium from your bones, if you do not consume enough through your diet (which can lead to future problems, such as osteoporosis).
Good sources of calcium include milk, cheese, yogurt, cream soups and puddings. Some calcium is also found in green vegetables, seafood, beans and dried peas. You should consume at least 4 servings of dairy products daily.
Faster recovery of patient in the home depends on so many factors, even though we can consider four main factors :
- Personal hygiene
- Environment :
- Infection free environment in the home will prevent the nosocomial infection which may happen in the hospital.
- Convenient and comfortable environment in the home will help the mental health improvement which improves the physical health also.
- Quite and noise free and warm environment in the home needed for good sleep, which helps physical and mental recovery of patient.
- Proper ventilation helps faster recovery by getting fresh air.
- Pure water, clean environment of home and surroundings prevent further infection.
- Proper light especially sunlight is needed for faster recovery
- Adequate room temperature also needed for convenient and comfortable rest and sleep.
- Bed and bedding – clean and neat bed and bedding will prevent further infection process.
- Nutrition :
- Patient may have loss of appetite , which can be managed by giving frequent and small diet.
- In some cases like, post-operative, diabetic or hypertensive patient etc, one should follow the dietician’s instructions.
- Food should be prepared in a hygienic way to prevent further infections.
- Having a glass of hot milk or protein rich food in the night menu helps good sleep.
- Should avoid alcohol, caffeine, salty, oily foods and excessive sweets.
- Personal Hygiene:
- Hand hygiene before and after having food prevents infection.
- Should maintain mouth hygiene by brushing dailymorning and evening.
- Should maintain personal hygiene by daily bath and changing clothes
- Avoiding smoking also helps in improving ones condition.
- Positive thinking, listening music and reading books to divert the mind from the disease condition.
- Exercise :
- Regular and proper exercise will help faster recovery and also maintain good health.
- Daily walking
- In case of bed ridden patient, physiotherapy is needed by means of passive or active exercises will help improve the condition.
- Speech therapy
To know about different ways you can keep home-bound seniors active and avoid health issues, check out our blog here.
When a person is diagnosed with the terminal ill disease it is better to be in the home environment to receive hospice and palliative care. The patient will be more comfortable in his familiar home atmosphere as his loved ones are close by and they are always available to help him.
Hospice is a high quality comprehensive care which includes
- Nursing care
- Physician’s care
- Social work
- Spiritual care
- Volunteer Services
- Respite care
- Self care/ Personal Assistance/Medical Care Taker
- Therapies ( Physiotherapy, Occupational therapy, Speech therapy, Respiratory therapy and Recreational therapy)
- Medications, Supplies and equipment’s delivered at home.
- Bereavement support
- Grief counselling
Palliative care focuses on pain management. Whether it is a physical pain or a mental pain or emotional stress brought about by the serious illness.
The aim of palliative care home is ultimately to “promote, restore, and maintain a person’s maximum level of comfort, function, and health, including care toward a dignified death.” Home-based care models are also generally comprehensive and person-centered where love and compassion is considered prominent. It is done with the aim to take into account factors such as culture, religion, and value systems, and respect people’s rights to privacy and dignity, which fits in well with its “community-driven” philosophy.
With effective hospice and palliative care the patient and his / her family can embrace death in a graceful manner.
Seniors as they get older may feel comfortable to stay at home. Some of them will be independent within their familiar surroundings but may feel bored at home. Some of them need minimal to moderate help to do their day to day activities because of their health condition. Some of them may need total assistance and may be bed bound due to severe disability due to the deterioration in their health condition. In all the above three situations one may feel lonely, boredom and depressed if they don’t have a proper inspiring companion or caregiver.
In order to keep the Senior Citizen active we can formulate certain recreational activities to keep them physically and mentally fit and keep them happy. We can try the following methodology whichever works depending upon the individual’s interest:
1. Seniors who are independent and active inside their home:
a. Explore the world via the world wide web- Computer games, facebook/twitter/emails/skype to stay connected with friends and families and make new friends with similar interests, whatsapp with friends and family, listen to the lectures/discourses/talks/songs of their interests in the computer or laptop with speakers attached
b. Start a Book Club – Read books with big fonts or magnifying glass or digital books with large fonts and discuss with the club members through a skype call or conference call about the characters in the book that they are focusing on.
c. Puzzle, board games ( chess, snake and ladder, chinese checker, scrabble),solitaire, jigsaw puzzle, carom board, cards etc.
d. Work from home if they are still able to do that for couple of hours a day
e. Write a letter or call someone and speak to them on several topics that are interesting for them.
f. Tinker- Able to fix little things at home and have a sense of fulfillment
g. Painting, drawing, home indoor gardening, listening to the music
h. Hire a care giver/companion to give company and have a partner to play several indoor games.
i. Start a new hobby
2. Seniors who need minimal to moderate help for day to day activities:
a. Caregiver to help in personal hygiene, walking, dining, bathing etc.
b. Formulate a recreational activity that gives interest to that Senior. For e.g. To listen to a good music for one hour in the morning, then do exercises for all the joints followed by walking inside the house with the help of a walker or a cane, then do a little writing or drawing or painting for another hour, then listen to a book or a magazine read by their care giver, then play chess or carom for another hour in the evening and go in the backyard or outside in the wheelchair to get some fresh air and watch their favourite program in the television.
3. Seniors who are bed bound and need total assistance:
a. Bed should be closer to the window so that they can see outside for birds, people, traffic, workers doing some painting or road repair work so that they stay connected to the outside world.
b. Keep a big clock and a large print daily calendar for them to look
c. Put soft music/lectures/discourses/talk for them to listen
These are the few tips to maintain a healthy, happy quality of life among the home bound Senior citizens.
Have elderly parents at home and need guidance on providing the right support and care for them? Visit this blog post!
As we all get older we need to have serious discussion among our close family members (spouse, kids, siblings) about taking care of our Aging Parents. As they reach 70s and 80s we need to check their physical and mental well-being and make sure they are leading an independent living with excellent quality of life.
If we don’t plan properly we all will end up in confusion, sadness, helplessness, frustration, exhaustion when we have to deal with inevitable health related challenges. With solid family support, professional support and good communication we can renew the sense of love, compassion and tenderness in to any family with Aging Parent.
In order to do that effectively adult children should take care of the following diligently:
1. Find out their (Aging Parent) needs: Find out from your Parent what they want whether:
• They want to stay at home
• Move close to their kids
• Move to a Senior independent living community with common dining hall, cleaning facility, medical facility etc.
• Old age home /Nursing home
When you notice poor eating habits, poor hygiene, neglecting their home, forgetfulness, difficulty driving then you need to counsel them to get help and provide help.
2. Find out your Parent’s assets including pension amount, the health insurance policies, and free medical facilities from the organization where they used to work etc.
3. Decide whether you want to be their Caregiver: It may
• Put emotional toll on you
• You may have to quit the job
• You may lose your benefits for your retirement.
• Consider professional help
• Make a Caregiver budget
• Make your own retirement plan
• Understand the costs of keeping your Parent in their home ( May need home health Nursing care or Medical Care Taker care if they have medical problem or just an assistant to do their day to day chores)
4. Make a joint decision: Discuss with your Parents, spouse, siblings and Children and make a joint decision about the location of the stay.
5. Financial Planning: Based on the above make a budget to take of care of your Parent with the contribution from your siblings to relieve the entire financial pressure on you.
With careful planning we can provide conducive atmosphere for our Parents to Age gracefully. For more tips on this topic, visit out blog post.
Adorable age from 10 to 19 contributes this period. Lot of question arises as the bodily changes are taking place. Menstrual pain, menstrual irregularities, anemia, bone health, sports injuries, anorexia are the few health related issues in which Mother and daughters should be aware of.
1. Menstrual pain can be addressed by taking hot-water bag to the lower tummy region and doing simple exercises like deep breathing, forward bending and hip bending exercises to increase the blood circulation to the uterine region.
2. Menstrual irregularities may be temporary but with proper nutrition and a professional help these girls can outgrow this issue and can regain normal flow.
3. Food rich in iron like dates, spinach, apple, pomegranate, seafood, raisins, green beans, peanuts, eggs, drumstick coriander etc. will prevent the growing girls from anemic condition.
4. Food rich in calcium like milk, other dairy products, oranges, almonds, broccoli, spinach etc. will strengthen their bones. Good exercise and good nutrition is very much essential for adolescent girls to prevent osteoporosis later on in their life.
5. Sports injuries like sprain and strain are quiet common. With proper stretching and strengthening exercises these girls can recover in no time.
6. Anorexia is an eating disorder in which adolescent girl think she is too fat and avoids eating in order to lose weight. With proper counseling and diet plan this can be fixed easily.
Childbearing years (20-40)
Child bearing years are crucial in a women’ life.
1. Pregnancy and puerparium,
2. Career path (Women in the workforce)
3. Incontinence, are the three issues we can discuss here
Pregnancy and Puerparium: Good nutrition, frequent follow up with Obstetrics. Gynaecologist, ante-natal exercises (breathing exercises, kegel exercises, walking, stretching etc.), proper lactation techniques to prevent neck and back pain and post-natal exercises are essential for Women during this time.
Women in the work force: Women in the desk job can get neck pain, back pain, eye strain, wrist /finger, knee pain due to repetitive stress and improper posture. With proper eye exercises, neck exercises, back exercises, posture exercises, cardiovascular workout women can overcome all the aches and pain.
Stress Incontinence: Due to childbirth, overweight, frequent cough/cold women can experience leakage of urine due to increased abdominal pressure and weak pelvic floor muscles. Proper pelvic floor (Kegel exercises) exercises when done regularly Women can overcome this problem.
Middle Aged Women (40-60 yrs)
These Women in 40s can take control of their health by going for yearly check up to prevent health problems like Diabetes, Heart problems and certain forms of cancer.
Some of the problems they face are urinary incontinence (difficulty in controlling the urine), fecal incontinence ( difficulty in controlling the bowel movements), menopause ( dry skin, vaginal dryness, facial hair, , early osteoporosis, overweight due to diabetes, osteoarthritis, gall bladder disease, gingivitis, joint/muscle pain, gingivitis and weight gain), hyperlipidemia (elevated lipid/lipid proteins resulting in pancreatis, retinalis etc) and breast cancer. Timely medical intervention can save women’s life thereby the whole family from a loss.
For early osteoporosis, weight bearing exercises like treadmill, stair-master and yoga, resisted or weight training exercises, aerobic exercises, hydrotherapy or exercises in pool, posture exercises and fall prevention exercises helps preventing fractures due to brittle bones due to osteoporosis.
Mature Women ( 60-80 yrs)
Osteoporotic fracture, falls resulting in fractures and dislocations, incontinence, stroke and breast cancer are few health conditions that may be debilitating for this group of women. Giving symptomatic treatment with proper medical and surgical team followed by good skilled Home Nursing, Physiotherapy and care taker’s assistance will help this population to lead an independent life without pain/ discomfort with high quality of living. They can also appreciate their aging gracefully.
Love and Compassion has been the very core of Nursing practice, a quality which has gained lot of attention along with advancements in knowledge and practice. In a home care setup where nurses work in an environment with very limited resources, love and compassion is the one which builds good nurse – client relationship, rapport and hope. A high quality of nursing care revolves around compassion displayed in terms of therapeutic touch, empathy, and communication.
Compassion and love are crucial when nursing a client at home as nurses have to be kind but never emotional because they are caring for living people who have emotions and feelings and the outcome of care is purely dependent on how good the client feels when care is being delivered. Compassion helps to achieve a sense of harmony and trust.
A nurse working in a home care set up should have compassion and love as he/she is solely responsible to radiate a sense of trust and dedication not just to client but to the family and friends of the client. A nurse is more of a leader, a teacher, an advocate and a friend. Compassion and love helps in deep understanding of suffering and motivates a nurse to help in relieving the client from the same. Compassionate care often marks lasting memories that a client retains about the overall experience and the impact that has created in client’s life. Love and compassion improves client’s satisfaction and has a direct influence on the outcome of care planned.
Clients treated with compassion and love tend to share more information about their symptoms and concerns helping the nurse to have better understanding of the client’s needs further aiding in better care. It has been largely proved that compassionate care reduces anxiety in the client which has its impact on rate of recovery or ability to heal. Compassion cannot be taught but is inborn and it touches the lives of every client and instills hope and faith. In a home care setup compassion and love aides the nurse to be aware of the fact that a fall or infection could cause unnecessary suffering and takes steps to deal with those issues by analyzing the environment for potential hazards or practicing good infection control techniques. Gentleness of the heart will teach gentleness to the hand and to the manners. Compassion is not a single task but an umbrella which hides faith, hope, trust, confidence, passion, sympathy, empathy, dedication and understanding and hence is crucial in building a healthy relationship with the client to bring out best of the care planned.
To know about our success stories of helping patients recover at home, visit this blog post!
Adorable age from 10 to 19 contributes to this period. Lot of question arises as the bodily changes are taking place. Menstrual pain, menstrual irregularities, anemia, bone health, sports injuries, anorexia are some of the health related issues which mothers and daughters should be aware of.
1. Menstrual pain can be addressed by taking hot-water bag to the lower tummy region and doing simple exercises like deep breathing, forward bending and hip bending exercises to increase the blood circulation to the uterine region
2. Menstrual irregularities may be temporary but with proper nutrition and a professional help these girls can outgrow this issue and can regain normal flow
3. Food rich in iron like dates, spinach, apple, pomegranate, seafood, raisins, green beans, peanuts, eggs, drumstick coriander etc. will prevent the growing girls from anemic condition
4. Food rich in calcium like milk, other dairy products, oranges, almonds, broccoli, spinach etc. will strengthen their bones. Good exercise and good nutrition is very much essential for adolescent girls to prevent osteoporosis later on in their life
5. Sports injuries like sprain and strain are quiet common. With proper stretching and strengthening exercises these girls can recover in no time
6. Anorexia is an eating disorder in which an adolescent girl thinks she is too fat and avoids eating in order to lose weight. With proper counseling and diet plan this can be fixed easily.
When a patient comes home from the hospital after an illness or a surgery, rehabilitation is an essential component for a successful recovery. The dictionary meaning for rehabilitation is to restore to a condition of good health, ability to work or the like. The rehabilitation professionals use their expertise to relieve pain and discomfort, for recovery and to return to maximum possible function.
I) Skilled Nursing: Home health rehab Nurse formulates the individual care plan, manages the medication for the pain relief and other support like injections, administration of medicines through IV line etc, wound care, post-surgical care, ostomy care, chronic disease management care, catheter care, patient and care giver education.
II) Physiotherapy: Physiotherapists follows a comprehensive evaluation in developing a care plan with short term and long term goals to relieve the pain, restore the mobility, strength and ambulation and regain the independent functional mobility of the patient.
III) Occupational therapy: Occupational therapists in conjunction with home health rehab team will develop and implement in-home treatment plan to retrain and rehabilitate essential life skills lost as a result of an illness or injury.
Looking to move your elderly parent from hospital to home care? Here are some tips that can help!
The way to parenthood is so exciting, full of imagination and happiness but in some cases it is not so easy because of the high risk. There are various causes like advanced maternal age, life style, medical history, chronic underlying conditions, multiple pregnancies etc. where the pregnant lady needs extra care and support. Having a high risk pregnancy does not mean that the mom’s and baby’s life is in danger but it indicates to take precautionary measures to reduce the risk so that the mother can enjoy her journey and give birth to a healthy baby.
There are few steps which will help the mother to take care of herself and her baby during high risk pregnancy at home:
- Avoid mental stress: Here the family members,especially the husband plays a big role. They should give her moral support and keep her happy in all the ways so that she should not worry or think about the complications of high risk. She should engage herself in listening to music, watching television, reading books, painting or whatever she likes to do. In the other words, use directional therapy to keep her calm and relaxed.
- Eat a healthy diet:It is very important aspect to fulfill all the nutritional need of mother and baby for a safe journey of 38 weeks. Should go with the advice of Dietician if mother is suffering with Gestational Diabetes or Hypertension. A mother should take plenty of green leaf, vegetables, pulses, nuts etc and drink plenty of water to keep her hydrated always, which itself will prevent many complications.
- Gain weight wisely: During pregnancy the weight gain will be there but wisely one should keep it under control to have healthy baby and it will be easy to shed the extra weight post delivery. It can be done with the support of her Doctor.
- Avoid risky substances: Mother should stop smoking or consuming alcohol or drugs to have a safe and healthy baby.
- Proper rest: Any kind of high risk pregnancy needs proper rest. It can be either bed rest or avoid travelling depend upon the condition and advice by the Doctor.
- Regular check-ups: It is very important to go to the Doctor whenever due and necessary to seek medical help to prevent more complications.
- Medications: The person should take all the prescribed medicines on time to keep the situations under control. Should not skip even the Vitamins or other nutritional substitutes otherwise it will affect the baby’s growth.
- Exercise: Mother should learn the prenatal exercise from the Doctor and do it regularly to reduce the risk and a normal delivery.
If a mother follows all the above points, though there will be a high risk, she can definitely enjoy the pregnancy.
For more on the importance of the mother’s well-being and tips for a safe delivery, visit this blog.
More and more Men over 50 years are experiencing prostate problem. Most of the cases are without symptoms. Only test that can detect the early stage of prostate problem is PSA (Prostate Specific Antigen). This can be done during a regular Master Health Check-up.With an elevated PSA prostate cancer can be detected early with further investigation.
A prostatectomy is the surgical removal of the prostate gland which is located just under the bladder and has the urethra travelling through it.
In the above picture one can see the pelvic floor muscles. The floor of the pelvis is made of layers of muscle and other tissues. These layers stretch like a hammock from the tailbone at the back to the pubic bone in front. A man’s pelvic floor supports his bladder and bowel. The urine tube and back passage all pass through the pelvic floor muscles. One’s pelvic floor muscles help one to control his bladder and bowel. It also helps in sexual function. It is vital to keep one’s pelvic floor muscle strong.
These Pelvic floor muscles could either be too weak, too tight or uncoordinated resulting in pelvic floor dysfunction after the surgery.
Stress Incontinence: Weak pelvic floor muscles cannot squeeze tightly when there is a sudden increase in the abdominal pressure due to sudden sneeze, coughing, laughing or lifting weight resulting in urine leakage.
Constant Dribbling: Some may experience constant dribbling throughout the day with increased leakage during physical activity.
Leakage and Erectile Function: When pelvic floor muscles are too tense or restricted both leaking and erectile dysfunction can occur.
Physiotherapy is a successful treatment option for men experiencing pelvic floor dysfunction following prostectomy. First, Physiotherapists who are trained in pelvic floor muscle examination educate the clients who are going in for surgery about the importance of exercises for the pelvic floor muscles and make them understand the right exercises to work only concentrate on pelvic floor muscles and not on lower abdominals, inner thigh or buttocks muscles. Then after surgery they evaluate the function of pelvic floor muscles and then plan the treatment protocol.
After the evaluation, Physiotherapy for incontinence includes manual therapy, biofeedback therapy, strengthening and coordination training.A tailored home exercise program is taught to help men improve their pelvic floor muscle awarenessduring home/work/sport and empowers men to improve pelvic floor muscles function.With dedicated physiotherapy most men with symptoms of incontinence post-prostectomy can regain full continence in 2-3 months.
Have questions about Physiotherapy in general? Here are few myth-busters you can read about!
Rehabilitative Nurse plays a major, multiple role in improving the quality of life for clients with disability or a chronic illness. She collaborates with the interdisciplinary team in restoring the function within the limitations imposed by the disease condition. She is an advocate for the clients and their family during the transition process from hospital to home. She coordinates the services provided by the rehabilitation team (skilled Home Nursing, Physiotherapy, Occupational therapy, Speech therapy, Medical Care Taker and Medical Social Worker) by executing the plan of care formulated by the team along with the client and client’s family member.
She is a Nurse Practitioner who has the Clinical Resource for the care of the client, addressing the crisis situation, proper assessment, smooth transition and safely adapting the changes that are implemented. She is the primary care person for the client. She is a Nurse consultant who can identify the problems, does case management and home care skilled nursing. She is a researcher on client’s families, evaluation, nursing procedures etc. She is an educator for client and their family, field staff, adaptive equipment training for the client, continuous nurse education, explanation of policies and procedures and the distribution of educational material for clients and their families.
To summarize, Rehabilitation Nurse works with the clients and their family members to create a recovery plan and set short term and long term goals thereby achieving independent lifestyle as much as possible. They have an opportunity to have a long lasting relationship with the clients and it is so fulfilling.
Would like to know more on how home care can play a major role in recovery? Visit this blog post.