How to be a Caregiver After Hip Fracture

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Elderly woman on the floor|How to be a Caregiver After Hip Fracture

What is a Hip fracture

hip fracture is a pretty common occurrence in seniors. Osteoporosis is a common ailment during old age.  Which makes senior women more prone to falls and fractures. A hip fracture can cause life-threatening complications. People over age 65 are most at risk because bones weaken and the risk of falling increases with age. Symptoms include the inability to move after a fall and severe hip or groin pain. A hip fracture almost always requires surgery and physical therapy. Taking steps to maintain bone density and avoid falls can help prevent a hip fracture. Dealing with this day out and being careful not to irritate the condition any further can cause strain on you, as the caregiver. Here are some great books to help you now.

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Reasons for Frequent Falls and Hip Fractures in Seniors

  • Poor nutrition: Improper nutrition makes the elderly susceptible to hip fractures later in life.  Also, eating disorders can also cause severe damage to our bones.
  • Medications: Taking 4 or more medications at a time can increase the chances of hip fracture in old age.
  • Alcohol and Tobacco: Long-term use of alcohol and tobacco can cause the bones to weaken.
  • Illnesses: Certain medical conditions can make the senior more susceptible to hip fracture.  Some of these include rheumatoid diseases, dementia, and also depression.
  • Lack of Coordination:  Poor balance is the major reason behind most of the hip fractures.

Hip Fracture

Caring for your loved one with a hip fracture is not an easy task.  Caregivers need to understand their condition. Often, your loved one can immediately figure out after a fall that they have a broken hip or fracture.  If the head of the hip bone had damage, then the pain is pretty less and often tends to get ignored.

Signs and Symptoms of a Broken Hip or Fracture

  • Severe pain soon after falling.
  • Stiffness accompanied by contusions in the affected area
  • The leg on the affected side of the hip can appear shorter

A broken hip or fracture can be a life-threatening condition.  In the majority of cases, surgery is usually the first line of treatment. But, when seniors are sick or unable to go through the surgery. Traction is used to repair the broken bone or fracture.

Seniors have to cope with intense pain.  But have to go through the agony of walking and keeping mobile after surgery.  Healing takes more time and the elderly have a difficult time coping with all this.

How do you fix a hip fracture?

A hip fracture can be repaired with the help of metal screws, plates, and rods. In some cases, artificial replacements (prostheses) of parts of the hip joint may be necessary. Treatment for a hip fracture usually involves a combination of surgery, rehabilitation, and medication.

Surgery

The type of surgery you have generally depended on the where and how severe the fracture is, whether the broken bones aren’t properly aligned (displaced), and your age and underlying health conditions. The options include:

  • Internal repair using screws
  • Total hip replacement
  • Partial hip replacement

Rehabilitation

You will continue the rehabilitation program (rehab) you started in the hospital. The better you do with your rehab exercises, the quicker you will get your strength and movement back. Most people are able to return to work 4 weeks to 4 months after surgery. But it could take 6 months to 1 year for you to fully recover, depending on how bad your fracture is.

Tips for the caregiver to help their loved ones

  • Exercising:  Exercise with the help of the caregiver is vital to regaining muscle strength quicker.
  • Assisted devices:  Assisted devices are crucial for the well-being of the elderly.  For example, wearing disposable underwear, walker, wheelchair, grab bars, and bath chair.
  • Do not leave them alone:  Assist them to bathe and all aspects of daily living.
  • Clothing and Footwear:  Wear loose-fitting clothing that can fasten in the front.  Slip-on footwear with anti-slip soles for easy, risk-free walking.
  • Try and keep depression at bay:   The sudden loss of freedom makes them depressed, irritable, and incapacitated.  So, it is necessary that the caregivers empathize with them.
  • Get some fresh air:  A daily ride to the park, where they can meet their friends.   And get some fresh air would make the senior feel much better.

A little love and support along with lots of care can give the senior the gift of living a fulfilling life.  All these tips can ensure a faster recovery from hip surgery and help them live a happy and healthy life.

Emotional Wellbeing after hip surgery

Caregivers can play an active role by offering empathy, compassion, and finding real-world solutions for their loved one’s anxieties. Creating a nurturing environment at home and having compassionate conversations with your loved one on a regular basis can encourage feelings of safety and security. This in itself can greatly improve your loved one’s chances of an effective recovery.  It’s critical to focus just as much attention on one’s emotional health as their physical recovery because it can have such a big impact on the body’s ability to heal.

Conclusion

A hip fracture is no fun especially when you are over 65.  The following tips and suggestions will ensure a great recovery.  Overseeing this can cause you to stress because you can’t be in 2 places at one time: taking care of your business and taking care of your loved one. Look into hiring some help. This will give you the opportunity to get some rest and also make sure your loved one is properly cared for.      Or maybe you want to spend more time with your loved one while taking a break from some of the redundant business tasks like sending out emails, returning calls, or organizing files. Let’s chat about how I can be of service to you so you can take care of your business and your loved one.

 

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