Bed sores are also known as pressure sores, and will usually develop as a result of injury to the skin as well as the tissues that lie underneath. When pressure is applied consistently, it leads to a sharp reduction in the amount of blood that the area receives. With time, these sores lead to skin breakage resulting in an open sore. One of the leading causes of bed sores is an individual’s confinement to a bed as is the case when one gets bed rest that requires them to lie down for long periods of time.it is important to note that these sores will often form on places where bone is present, and this for the simple reason that there is less padding at the different sites. Common sites for the formation of pressure sores include: the hips, the buttocks, the backbone as well as the heels.Bed sores will vary greatly depending on a number of factors. In mild cases, these sores will only cause reddening of the affected area, while in severe cases this will be manifested by deep damage of the underlying muscle and sometimes extend to the bone. The latter are, for obvious reasons, harder to deal with than the mild sores. This is because they will often cause secondary infections of the blood, the bones as well as the skin. Having mentioned this, it is important to look at some of the causes of bed sores.
- Consistent pressure on the skin will cause pressure sores to develop as mentioned above.
- When a patient slides down the bed or the seat, this is likely to cause pressure sores as such actions cause the skin to fold uncomfortably. This occurs due to the shear force that is exerted on different parts of the body.
- Skin irritation following contact with body fluids such as excessive sweat and urine. Constant contact with feaces following defecation can also cause painful pressure sores.
- Poor nutrition, particularly as people age is also a leading cause of bed sores when combined with the above mentioned factors. This is because such nutrition causes the skin to become thinner and flakier, thus more prone to the development of these pressure sores.
What does the treatment of bed sores entail?
The fundamental course of action as far as the treatment of pressure sores is concerned involves the elimination of the causative agent. It also revolves around preventing the sore from deteriorating. Some of the treatment options include:
- Reducing the pressure on the affected region by ensuring even spreading of body weight as well as constant change in the body positioning, there are specially designed mattresses for this purpose, and they come in very handy for patients with these sores.
- Ensure that the bed sores are cleaned well and covered to prevent drying as this only worsens the situation.
- A healthy diet that is rich in proteins will go a long way in ensuring that the skin heals quickly.
- Once the doctor has gotten rid of the dead tissue, medication is used to decrease the probability of infection.
- Surgical intervention is required for pressure sores that are severe.