For people who use wheelchairs, the risk of developing pressure sores is real. This is because sitting in a wheelchair for long periods can put a lot of pressure on specific body parts. Did you know that an estimated 85% of people who use wheelchairs will experience a pressure sore at some point in their lives? In this blog post, we will discuss why pressure sores in wheelchair users happen, and we will also provide some tips on how to prevent them from happening!
If you are a wheelchair user, there are a few things that you can do to prevent pressure sores from developing. First of all, it is essential to make sure that you are sitting in your wheelchair correctly.
This means that your bottom should be back in the seat, and your knees should be at a 90-degree angle. You also want to make sure that you are not sitting on any wrinkles in the fabric of your wheelchair seat, as this can create additional pressure points.
Additionally, it is important to change positions while sitting in your wheelchair regularly. Every 20 minutes or so, try to shift your weight around a bit to distribute the pressure on your body evenly. Finally, make sure to practice.
What are pressure sores?
Pressure sores are skin wounds that develop when constant pressure cuts blood flow to the skin. Pressure sores most often form on bony areas of the body, such as the hips, tailbone, and heels. In addition, people who spend long periods in a wheelchair are at risk of developing pressure sores.
There are four stages of pressure sores:
Stage I: The skin is red and irritated, but there is no open wound.
Stage II: An open sore or blister forms.
Stage III: The sore gets deeper and develops dead tissue (necrosis).
Stage IV: The necrotic tissue dies, and the underlying bone or muscle is exposed.
How long can it take for a pressure sore to start?
It can take a few hours to a few days for a pressure sore to develop. It all depends on how much pressure is being applied to the skin and how long it is applied.
How could a wheelchair cause pressure sores?
When someone sits in a wheelchair, they pressure specific areas of their body for prolonged periods.
This can cause the skin and tissues in those areas to break down, leading to the development of pressure sores. Additionally, people who use wheelchairs often have impaired circulation, further contributing to the development of pressure sores.
Did you know that an estimated 85% of people who use wheelchairs will experience a pressure sore at some point in their lives
How can you prevent pressure sore from happing in a wheelchair?
Here is what can be done to prevent pressure sores from developing in wheelchair users. If you are a wheelchair user, it is vital to avoid pressure sores from developing. By following the tips below, you can help reduce your risk of developing a pressure sore.
- Use a cushion or pad to help distribute weight evenly: This will help reduce the amount of pressure placed on any one area of the body. We reviewed some of the best wheelchair cushions to help prevent pressure sores.
- Avoid sitting in the same position for long periods of time: This will help reduce the amount of pressure placed on any one area of the body.
- Keep the skin clean and dry: This will help prevent infection by keeping your skin clean by using a mild soap and slightly warm water. After you clean your skin, be sure to dry it thoroughly.
- Perform a range of motion exercises: This will help keep the muscles and joints from getting too stiff.
- Eat a healthy diet: Try and eat high in Zinc, proteins, and Vitamin C. These foods can help renew cells.
- Drink plenty of fluids: This will help to keep the skin hydrated. Drink plenty of water, juice, and milk every day.
If you are a wheelchair user, it is essential to be aware of the risk of developing pressure sores. By taking some preventive measures, you can help to avoid this complication.
If you have any questions or concerns about pressure sores, please speak with your doctor or healthcare provider.
What happens if you do develop pressure sores?
If you develop pressure sores, it’s important to seek medical attention. Pressure sores can quickly become infected, and if they’re not treated properly, they can lead to serious health complications. In some cases, pressure sores can even be fatal.
There are a few different ways that doctors will treat pressure sores. If the sore is small and superficial, your doctor may prescribe a cream or ointment to help heal the area. For deeper sores, you may need oral antibiotics or even surgery.
However, pressure sores can be prevented with proper care in most cases.
Wheelchair users are at a higher risk for developing pressure sores. However, several things can be done to prevent them.
Using a gel cushion or pad, avoiding sitting in the same position for too long, keeping the skin clean and dry, performing a range of motion exercises, eating a healthy diet, and drinking plenty of fluids can help reduce your risk of developing pressure sores.
If you have any questions or concerns about pressure sores, speak with your doctor or healthcare provider. With proper care and treatment, most pressure sores can be avoided.
What are some other ways that you prevent pressure sores? Share your tips in the comments below!