Taking care of a spouse or family member who is unable to move or in bed bound can be both emotionally and physically challenging. Lifting a loved one can put both patient and caregiver at risk for injury.
Using proper lifting techniques can help prevent injury. This article provides some general guidelines for lifting and transferring patients safely. Let’s learn it to make properly care for a family member at home.
The most common injuries carers get are back injuries. Injuring your back will limit your movement and your ability to care for someone. It could take a long time for you to recover.
Lifting someone incorrectly can also damage fragile skin, cause shoulder and neck injuries, increase existing breathing difficulties, or cause bruising or cuts.
Some general guidelines to follow when you lift or move a person include:
- Always keep the patient close to your body.
- Make sure that your neck and head are always in proper alignment with your spine.
- Your feet should be shoulder-width apart to maintain balance.
- Do not bend at the waist. Maintain your spine’s natural curve.
- Use your leg muscles to lift and pull.
- Do not twist your body when carrying a person.
If the patient is uncooperative, too heavy, or in an awkward position, get help from a buddy. Don’t try to lift the patient by yourself without any help of lifting helper. Because it will not only help you to decrease the pressure but also help to protect your back from injury. It could be a spouse, a sibling, a child or another close family member or friend of the family.
How to position the patients
Bedsores are injuries to the skin and underlying tissues that result from sitting or lying in a single position for long periods of time. To change the position of the patients on bed, you should place one hand under the shoulder, the other hand under the knees of the elderly. This position helps to pull them up or down on bed. Simultaneously the elderly may help by holding the helper’s arm or holding the bed frame and pulling himself.
Use suitable equipment
Using the right equipment can help minimize the risk of injury to both you and the patient. Caregivers have a myriad of tools at their disposal that can make moving and transferring a patient safer and more efficient
Caring for a loved one can be very difficult. Even with the best of intentions it can be easy to lose patience, not feel appreciated, or become a little overwhelmed. Making sure the person is as comfortable as possible and helping them to receive the treatment they need.