Though back pain can affect people of all ages, it’s more prevalent among elderly people due to conditions like osteoarthritis and osteoporosis and because of the higher risk of serious injury. If your senior loved one is experiencing back pain, either chronic or acute, there are ways to lessen the severity of the symptoms. Here are a few suggestions for helping your loved one manage back pain.
See the Doctor
Back pain has many causes. If your loved one’s pain worsens or persists, take him or her to the doctor. Back pain can indicate diseases that need to be diagnosed and require special treatment. The doctor can also provide medications and physical therapy recommendations that ensure your loved one manages his or her back pain as effectively as possible.
Hiring a professional caregiver is one of the best ways to help your parent manage pain. If your elderly loved one needs help maintaining a high quality of life while aging in place, reach out to Embrace In-Home Care Green Valley, a trusted provider of elderly home care. Our caregivers provide transportation to and from medical appointments and social events, nutritious meal preparation, assistance with daily exercise, and help with everyday tasks like bathing, grooming, and light housekeeping.
Modify the Home
Bending and reaching are often difficult for seniors with persistent back pain. To help your loved one stay comfortable at home, move items from high shelves to lower ones, and avoid storing things on the floor.
To make standing and sitting easier for your loved one, install grab bars throughout the home, including near the bed and in the bathroom. You can also modify the toilet to help your loved one move more easily from sitting to standing.
Back pain caused by arthritis can worsen if your loved one doesn’t move regularly. Depending on the severity of the pain, you can modify gentle exercises to help your loved one maintain his or her range of motion.
Gardening and swimming are two options many seniors enjoy. Swimming is especially helpful if your loved one needs to strengthen his or her muscles but needs a low-impact exercise to do so.
Helping an aging adult manage pain can be a challenging task. If you’re the primary family caregiver for a senior loved one living in Green Valley, live-in care is available if your loved one’s health has become too difficult to manage without professional expertise. At Embrace In-Home Care, we take measures to help seniors prevent illness and injury by assisting with exercise and mobility, preparing nutritious meals, helping with bathing and other personal hygiene tasks, and much more.
Use Relaxation Techniques
Relaxation techniques can help some seniors reduce their overall pain. Hot and cold packs are usually the best options to relax muscles. Make sure to choose the option your loved one is most comfortable with, since ice can increase pain caused by arthritis. Remove ice packs after 10 minutes, and use heating pads and other heat packs carefully to prevent burns.
Assist with Daily Activities
Some seniors have severe back pain that makes it difficult to relax or enjoy everyday activities. When your loved one is experiencing severe pain, allow him or her to move at a safe and comfortable pace. If possible, stay with your loved one until the pain subsides. You can also hire a caregiver to help him or her address the pain and take care of daily tasks when you aren’t around.
Seniors who want to remain healthy as they age can benefit in a variety of ways when they receive professional home care. Green Valley, AZ, Embrace In-Home Care is here to help your loved one accomplish daily tasks, prevent illness, and focus on living a healthier and more fulfilling life. For more information about our flexible, customizable home care plans, call one of our compassionate Care Managers today at (520) 625-2050.