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Thread: Preventing pressure sores

  1. #1
    Distinguished Community Member agate's Avatar
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    Default Preventing pressure sores

    This is the day when I change the bed linens here and I was looking forward to a different bottom sheet because the one that is on there now fits too loosely and is usually wrinkled.

    This reminded me of something I read a while back about preventing pressure sores. It surprised me that one of the bits of advice was to keep the sheets free of wrinkles.

    I couldn't believe I'd read that, and I'm not sure I understand why it's important, but I found it--or something similar--online:

    https://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/...ons/000147.htm

    I notice that if you spend most of your day in a chair, even though you're not in bed all day, you too are vulnerable to pressure sores.

    Maybe somebody knows why wrinkles in the bedsheets put a person at greater risk of bedsores.
    MS diagnosed 1980. Avonex 2002-2005. Copaxone 6/07 - 5/10.
    Member of this MS board since 2001.


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    Distinguished Community Member Earth Mother 2 Angels's Avatar
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    ((((((agate)))))) ~

    Sheet wrinkles are especially concerning for persons, who are in bed for long periods of time, like my son. Jon also has lymphedema and general fluid retention, which means that anything pressing against his skin will cause an imprint/indentation. So, we are constantly smoothing his sheets and underpads. He still ends up with impressions on his skin.

    A wound care nurse told me in 2009, when Jon had a 5" tunnel in his right buttock, that the skin is the last organ to receive the nutrients given to the body. This contributes to skin breakdown, which leads to pressure sores.

    I think the impact of wrinkled sheets resulting in bedsores would correlate to the overall health of the person sleeping on the wrinkled sheets.

    Nonetheless, I always smooth out our sheets, before Jim or I go to bed (we sleep in shifts). My mother used to iron our sheets. I won't go that far, but I can smooth them out and retuck them to keep them taut.

    My 2 cents ... for what it's worth ...

    Love & Light,

    Rose
    Mom to Jon, 48, (seizure disorder; Gtube; trache; colostomy; osteoporosis; hypothyroid; enlarged prostate; lymphedema, assorted mysteries) and Michael, 32, (intractable seizures; Gtube), who were born with an undiagnosed progressive neuromuscular disease and courageous spirits. Our Angel Michael received his wings in 2003 and now resides in Heaven. Our Angel Jon lives at home with me and Jim, the world's most wonderful dad.

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    Distinguished Community Member agate's Avatar
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    Thanks so much, Rose!

    I was thinking that numb skin wouldn't feel the wrinkled sheets and yet they would cause problems.

    It's weird how one little detail like that can really create big trouble.
    MS diagnosed 1980. Avonex 2002-2005. Copaxone 6/07 - 5/10.
    Member of this MS board since 2001.

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    Yes, wrinkled sheets, clothing, diapers, anything that presses on the skin in the same area for hours can cause a sore to develop. Most often it happens when a person is immobile -- lies in the same position without moving around. Most healthy people will turn over in their sleep, or awaken and turn, but paralysis may cause someone to lie in the same position for hours, and that can cause the sore.


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    Distinguished Community Member SalpalSally's Avatar
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    I'm always moving I think? At least I wake up in diff positions,!
    Love, Sally


    "The best way out is always through". Robert Frost








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    I have been using a cuddle ewe for years. I order them on line. I need a new one now, but they are expensive and I can't afford it right at this time. I think I would find it hard to sleep without one. I wonder now though if (since they are soft) they could cause pressure sores. Cat and Rose, since you two are the two that know the most about this, sometime when you have some extra time look at one and see what you think.

    www.CuddleEwe.com

    Well, I don't know why this link does not come up. It just did when I put it in computer. Anyway, I get the mattress topper and the flannelette that goes over it.
    Virginia

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  10. #7
    Distinguished Community Member Earth Mother 2 Angels's Avatar
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    ((((((Virginia)))))) ~

    Your link worked for me.

    Since you've been sleeping on the Cuddle Ewe for years without any skin breakdown, I think it's fine. The website description of the mattress topper even mentions that it wicks away sweat and relieves pressure on certain areas of your body, where pressure sores would likely develop.

    Folks, who are vulnerable to pressure sores, are typically in bed more than they are out of bed, and may not be able to turn on their own or may not be turned by a caregiver on a regular basis. Also, general health is relevant to developing pressure sores. Jon's decubitus ulcers all occurred during hospital stays, when he was deathly ill.

    At home, we use a low air loss alternating pressure mattress, which protects Jon's skin. An open weave bottom sheet and an underpad made specifically for air mattresses allow the air to circulate.

    I guess with the Cuddle Ewe, you don't have to count sheep! As long as it works for you, that's all that matters.

    Love & Light,

    Rose
    Mom to Jon, 48, (seizure disorder; Gtube; trache; colostomy; osteoporosis; hypothyroid; enlarged prostate; lymphedema, assorted mysteries) and Michael, 32, (intractable seizures; Gtube), who were born with an undiagnosed progressive neuromuscular disease and courageous spirits. Our Angel Michael received his wings in 2003 and now resides in Heaven. Our Angel Jon lives at home with me and Jim, the world's most wonderful dad.

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  12. #8
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    Thanks Rose, I caught the pun in that. Actually, I still do not sleep well, but much better with it than without it.
    Virginia

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  14. #9
    Distinguished Community Member Howie's Avatar
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    Cool

    The link worked for me, and that bed at the end looks heavenly. I got sleepy just looking at it.

    I don't get IN the bed. I sleep on the comforter and have this super soft blanket I put over me. It is as soft as cat fur. Very short on both sides, and a different color on each side. I'm sure it has a name, but I don't know what it's called.

    Once it gets cold, I'll get under the covers, but for now, this is perfect!
    Roswell was a gift.

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  16. #10
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    Howie, that super soft blanket probably really is cat fur!
    Virginia

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