While under the care of a nursing home, your loved one might get exposed to sicknesses and other issues. One issue that your loved one might face in a nursing home is an infection. There are many different kinds of infections that are common in nursing homes. It is important for you to know about these to prevent them from infecting your loved one. and creating further health problems for them. This page will focus on the four most common types of infection that your loved one can get exposed to in a home.
- Urinary tract infections,
- Diarrheal illnesses; and
- Skin and soft tissue infections.
These are common forms of infections in nursing homes. This is because they are associated with the types of care that the residents are getting. A lot of residents get the same care, so it is common for them it get the same infections. They can also pass these infections along to other residents. This makes the infection continue to spread through the entire home.
Pneumonia is common for nursing home residents to get. It is the biggest cause of mortality in nursing homes. It is also a huge reason for residents to get transferred to a hospital. A resident with a feeding tube is at a higher for getting infected with pneumonia. Since feeding tubes are common in homes, some residents may become infected with this. It can be hard to diagnose pneumonia because some people will not develop a fever. This is a common symptom of the infection. Some elderly people are also not as likely to complain of having chills or chest pain. These are also common symptoms that are used to diagnose the infection. Good hygiene is a good way to prevent pneumonia. It is important for you to check that your loved one has good hygiene to try to prevent this infection.
Urinary Tract Infection
The next common infection is a urinary tract infection (UTI). This is the most common and the most over-diagnosed infection in nursing homes. Since a lot of residents are using a catheter, it increases the risk of getting a UTI and bacteria. Each day the catheter is being used, the risk of getting a UTI goes up. There are ways to prevent getting a UTI with the use of a catheter. It is recommended that to prevent a UTI, staff members should minimize the use of catheters. They should also practice proper hygiene before and after touching the catheter. Staff should use a closed drainage system and keep the bag below the level of the resident’s bladder. It is important to make sure that proper care is taken when using a catheter.
Diarrheal illnesses are also a common infection in nursing homes. Viral and bacterial gastroenteritis are major causes of diarrheal infections. Since older adults produce less gastric acid than younger people, they are at a higher risk of getting this infection. With this infection, your loved one may also be at risk of becoming dehydrated. This infection can get transmitted by person-to-person contact, or through food and water. It is so common in a nursing home because the staff members are touching one resident and then going to the next one. Another factor is that residents eat in the same place. This type of infection can get transmitted if dining utensils are not cleaned. To prevent the spread of infection, your loved one should have a hygiene plan.
Skin and Soft Tissue Infections
Skin and soft tissue infections are common in nursing homes. This is because older adults are prone to these infections due to the changes that come along with aging. When a person ages, their epidermis and dermis may have atrophy. They might have slower wound healing time. This gives any type of bacteria more time to infect your loved one’s body. Some common chronic wound infections are pressure ulcers, diabetic wound infections, and vascular ulcers. Common skin infections in nursing homes are herpes zoster and simplex, and also scabies. Scabies is common because it is a mite that can spread from person to person. Since so many people are living together in one place, it is spread around the facility.
These common infections can be dangerous to your loved one in a nursing home. They are all spread from person to person since there are so many people living together in the same space. Being aware of these common infections can help keep your loved one safe. You can also make a plan of how to prevent these infections from spreading to your loved one.