Frequent Injuries in Aging Adults with Dementia & How to Prevent Them

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As dementia progresses, your aging loved one is going to become increasingly forgetful and unstable, which will also increase his or her chances of injury while trying to accomplish everyday tasks. Some of the most common injuries among seniors with dementia include the following.

Burn Injuries

Burn injuries are common among elderly people with dementia, and they can have serious consequences. Decreased cognitive ability can cause older adults with dementia to do things such as forgetting to turn off the stove, accidentally touching a hot pan, or setting the water temperature in the shower too high. Although your parent needs to maintain as much independence as possible, you should always try to keep a watchful eye on him or her. Burn injuries often happen when aging adults with dementia try to perform everyday tasks such as cooking meals or taking hot showers on their own while not being stable enough to do so.

If your loved one is no longer able to safely perform daily tasks independently, professional in-home dementia care is the ideal option. A home caregiver can help your loved one with tasks such as:

  • Bathing
  • Cooking
  • Dressing
  • Transportation
  • Light housekeeping

If your senior loved one has been diagnosed with a serious condition and needs help with tasks like meal prep, transportation, bathing, and grooming, reach out to Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of in-home care, San Antonio families can trust. We also offer comprehensive care for seniors with dementia, Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s.

Injuries Due to Falls

Many dementia symptoms increase the risk of falls. For example, seniors with dementia tend to wander and walk when they’re confused or agitated. Walking in an unfamiliar area while in a state of confusion or distress makes it more likely for an aging adult to trip over an object in his or her path. Older adults with dementia may also forget to eat or take their medications, which can cause dizziness and lead to falls. People with dementia also typically have slower reaction times, so they may not be able to keep themselves from falling if they start to lose their footing or become unbalanced.

Head trauma is one of the most serious types of injuries that occur with falls. Injuries to the head can lead to decreased cognitive abilities, which is especially dangerous for seniors who already have dementia. If your loved one experiences a fall, take him or her to the doctor to have his or her mental function checked, even if you don’t think his or her head was impacted. 

Hip fractures, broken bones, and spinal injuries are other common consequences of falls, and they can have major long-term impacts on aging adults’ mobility levels. Many of these types of injuries happen in the bathroom, so to minimize the risk of bathroom falls, caregivers should install safety items such as nonslip mats and grab bars in tubs and near toilets. 

Seniors with dementia can significantly reduce their risk of fall-related injuries by receiving mobility assistance from professional caregivers. San Antonio homecare service experts are available to provide high-quality care to seniors on an as-needed basis. From assistance with mobility and exercise to providing transportation to the doctor’s office and social events, there are a variety of ways professional caregivers can help your aging loved one continue to live independently.

Medication Mishaps

As dementia progresses, your loved one will become increasingly forgetful. This can result in taking the wrong medication, forgetting to take medication, or taking a medication too often. Hiring a caregiver to provide medication reminders and monitor when your loved one takes his or her medicine is an easy and painless way to prevent a medication mishap from turning into a serious problem.

Aging adults living with dementia may experience limited mobility and several other health issues that can increase their risk of burns, falls, and other types of injuries. Caring for a senior with dementia can be challenging for family caregivers. Luckily, there is dementia care San Antonio families can rely on. Professional dementia caregivers help seniors with dementia stay safe and comfortable at home by preventing wandering, providing cognitive stimulation, and assisting with household chores. Reach out to one of our Care Managers today at (210) 495-6300 to learn more about our high-quality home care services.

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