Pneumonia can be viral or bacterial, which can make treating it difficult without a little more testing. In some cases, pneumonia may be so severe that it sends your elderly family member to the hospital. Once she’s released from the hospital, you’ve got a job on your hands ensuring that she’s able to heal as well as possible. Home care services providers might be the best option.
Hospital Discharge Instructions Can Be Confusing
The hospital will send your elderly family member home with some detailed instructions about her care. Some of those instructions may seem contradictory or just flat out confusing. Make sure that you fully understand the instructions. The types of recommendations you’ll see will involve everything from medication instructions to activities that are allowed and what else your elderly family member needs to do in order to recover.
There May Also Be Necessary Treatments
Recovering from pneumonia requires more than oral antibiotics, sometimes. Your elderly family member may also need to use a nebulizer or she may need supplemental oxygen for a time. Using these types of treatments and equipment can be a very new situation, which can be incredibly intimidating. A nurse will likely show you and your senior how to use these devices before discharge, but it’s easy to forget after only one or two demonstrations.
Avoiding Complications Is Crucial
What you definitely want to avoid is any sort of complications. If your elderly family member tries to overdo it when she gets home, for example, that can cause bigger problems and might even result in rehospitalization. Other complications could involve getting sick with something else because of an immune system that’s overloaded or even respiratory failure. All of these are situations you want to avoid.
Recovery Can Take Longer than You Expect
Recovery from something as big as pneumonia can be more complex than it seems at first. Your elderly family member may have been able to recover quickly from ailments in the past, but find that it takes longer now for her to get back on her feet. That’s not something that she needs to push herself toward doing faster. She needs to let her body recover at its own pace, especially if she’s had to be in the hospital.
Home care services providers can help you and your senior with all of these aspects of recovery. They can take care of the medical concerns so that your elderly family member can relax and simply focus on doing what she needs to do in order to get well and avoid returning to the hospital.