Being bedridden is a challenge both physically and mentally. You may start to feel lonely or depressed and your body could develop bedsores. But remember, you’re not alone. This is an issue many people have faced. You may not be able to control the circumstances that made you bedridden, but you can control how you adapt and grow because of it.
Caring for Your Mental State
If you’re bedridden, don’t allow boredom, or worse yet, depression take over. Instead, keep yourself mentally active and have some fun! Here are just a few ways.
Prayer and meditation help us center ourselves and remember what’s important. They’ve helped many, many people through trying times.
2. Practice Thankfulness
Many psychologists believe that true, lasting happiness comes not from getting everything you want, but from being thankful for everything you have. Don’t let life’s trials stop you from seeing life’s blessings.
Now is the perfect time to learn. Take an online class. Or simply choose a subject that interests you and learn everything you can about it. Thanks to computers and the internet you may even be able to get a job or do volunteer work online.
4. Do Physical Activities From Bed
Even though you can’t run a 4K at the moment, that doesn’t mean you can’t do any physical activities. If you’re able, try playing guitar, knitting, or doing other simple things from bed.
5. Do Good for Others
Some believe that true happiness comes from doing good for others. Send a loved one an encouraging email. Call a lonely friend. Answer people’s questions online, or provide encouraging feedback to one of the internet’s many wannabe authors.
If ever there was a good time to catch up on reading, this is it. See if your caretaker can bring you some books from the library.
Caring for Your Physical State
Another way to avoid becoming depressed is to take good care of your physical body. Now more than ever it’s important to—
1. Eat Healthy
Proper eating will help you maintain strength and avoid physical decline. Eat lots of fruits and vegetables, and make sure to get some protein. Avoid excessive sugars or fatty foods.
2. Drink Lots of Water
Water is important for circulation and cleansing so you can stay healthy.
3. Exercise If You Can
Some bedridden people may be able to walk across the room.
Others can sit up in a chair for a while. Whatever you can do, do it—even if it’s simply rolling from side to side in bed.
4. Reposition Yourself Every 2 Hours
If you can, reposition yourself every two hours with the help of a bed rail or bed trapeze. This will help you prevent bedsores—injuries to the skin caused by the prolonged pressure of lying in one position.
5. Use Pressure Prevention Products
In addition to repositioning yourself, you may want to use a pressure prevention pad or mattress. These products help prevent bedsores and can allow current bedsores to heal.
Bony areas of your body, such as hips, elbows, and the back of feet, are particularly susceptible to bedsores so consider getting a cushion or bed wedge to protect them.
6. Keep Your Skin Clean
Ask your caregiver to regularly wash your skin with mild soap and warm water, dry it off and inspect it daily for bedsores. Depending on your condition, you may be able to do some of the inspecting yourself.
Austin Sheeley is a senior health blogger for home medical supplies store, http://www.justhomemedical.com, which offers a wide variety of pressure prevention pads and other bedsore related products.