Your mother may be in her 70s and she’s going in for minor surgery. She may be required to stay in the hospital for a couple of days following this as long as everything goes along smoothly. You expect her doctor to be positive about her prognosis and the future, and are quite surprised when she recommends that your mother has proper care and support when she’s discharge.
But, you think, this was only minor surgery.
You might not be thinking about hospital readmissions. After all, she wasn’t really admitted to the hospital, was she? This was planned, scheduled surgery. You knew she was going to be spending a day or two there for observation.
No matter why a person is in the hospital, even if it is for scheduled surgery, if they spend any time there, they will be discharged. If your mother is discharged from the hospital and has to be readmitted before 30 days, that’s technically considered a readmission.
What can you do to help prevent that?
The last thing most family members want is for their elderly loved one to make a return trip back to the hospital. There are things you can do that can reduce those risks and help your mother recover as well as she can be expected.
Hire home care support.
By hiring an experienced home care aide, you are increasing the chances your mother makes a full recovery. You might be more than willing and able to help her, but unless you have prior experience supporting an elderly person through recovery for something like this, you may miss certain opportunities that can be instrumental to the recovery process.
Encourage her to exercise.
Her doctor probably told her the value of exercise, but is she going to listen? It might be tough. She might not want to work with physical therapist. It can be uncomfortable and sometimes downright painful to work muscles that haven’t been exercised in a long, long time.
If you continue to encourage her, though, maybe even offering to do some of these exercises right along with her, she may be more inspired to do what’s necessary to recover.
She needs to remember that recovery isn’t guaranteed, no matter how old she is or how great her physical health happens to be. She still needs to follow doctor’s instructions and pay close attention to her recovery. It all starts, though, by having the right support system in place before she is sent home.
Angel Alliance Caregivers of Galloway, NJ is dedicated to helping seniors maintain full, independent lives where they most desire to live: in the comfort of their own homes. Call us at (609) 965-0028.