Adulthood, Aging and Disability

A Product of Disability Access: Empowering Tribal Members with Disabilities & Their Families
by Spirit Lake Consulting, Inc.

Pressure Sores

pressure soreWho wants to talk about their buttocks? No one? Big surprise. If you are like most older adults with disabilities, that is an area that doesn't look so great. Who are we kidding? As we get older, nothing on us looks that great any more. Pressure sores, though, are a very serious subject that can cause greater disability or even death. You may have commonly heard these referred to as 'bed sores', which make them sound somehow not very life-threatening. Nothing could be further from the truth. The picture at right shows a pressure sore. Type 'pressure sore' into any search engine and you can come up with many far worse images. Pressure sores are an extremely important issue for individuals who use a wheelchair or are bedbound.

SLC Consultant Willie Davis writes about his personal experience

Throughout those years I have experienced pressure sores. One early experience scared me enough to force me to realize the importance of relieving pressure from any area where you may develop pressure sores. In the case of a person such as myself who is paraplegic, this is usually the bottom area. In 1984 a pressure sore on my caustic (tailbone) area caused an infection throughout my body; the doctors had to actually reach in and drain five ounces of pus from this area. I was hospitalized for a week and was sent home with a regimen of antibiotics taken intravenously three times a day.

Prevention of Pressure Sores

Push up with your arms to hold yourself out of your wheelchair or chair for a few seconds to give your bottom area some relief. Think about it this way, how would you feel if there was consistent pressure placed upon you all the time? A little relief and doing this at least 20 to 30 times a day can help. Not to mention the exercise you are giving your arms. Make this a conscious habit. This is especially important for those who may have some nerve damage and do not feel the pressure on an area.

NEXT button Pressure Sores: A personal perspective

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: Staying Healthy : Pressure Sores


Spirit Lake Consulting, Inc. -- P.O.Box 663, 314 Circle Dr., Fort Totten, ND 58335 Tel: (701) 351-2175 Fax: (800) 905 -2571
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