Why are Mentally Disabled Patients at Risk for Developing Bed Sores?

By Nursing Home Law Center

Mentally Disabled

Mentally disabled patients are at a heightened risk for developing bed sores primarily due to the fact that they may be completely reliant upon staff in a nursing home or hospital for their care. Unfortunately, some mentally disabled patients my physically look well and the staff may mistakenly believe that they do not require assistance with the skills of daily living and common sense bed sore prevention.

The level of functioning dictates the necessary care. While a patient suffering from a traumatic brain injury may require a great deal of assistance with their daily living needs, a dementia patient may simply need reminders or re-direction from staff to help.

Staff in nursing homes, hospitals and assisted living facilities must get to know their patients to provide them with the level of care they require. In any respect, mentally disabled patients should be encouraged to be as active as feasible. When patients remain bed-bound and inactive their risk for developing bed sores (also referred to as: decubitus ulcer, pressure ulcer and pressure sore) increases significantly.

In addition to encouraging activity, in order to prevent bed sores in mentally handicapped patients, extra care should be given during meals (to encourage them to eat properly) and by listening to any complaints made by the person.

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