Do you know to Control Gastrointestinal Problem in Elders?
The elder under your care may suffer from some health problems related to the Gastrointestinal System. Let us see what these issues are and how you can help the elder.
Some of the most common issues are passing of gas as belches, feeling sharp, constricting pains or cramps in the abdomen, experiencing distention and tightness in the abdomen and feel burning from the upper abdomen to the lower chest.
Increase the intake of water and vegetables and reduce non-vegetarian and grain-based food in the elder's diet.
Another problem related to the stomach is vomiting. In case the elder feels nauseous, assist them by giving them water to drink as a vehicle to vomit.
In case the elder feels severe discomfort with any of these symptoms, inform the elder's family who would then arrange for a doctor's examination.
If the elder under your care has dragging pain in the upper right abdomen, yellowness of skin and eyes and itching on the skin, they may be suffering from hepato-Cellular jaundice
If the elder under your care has cramping pain, high fever, nausea and vomiting and yellowness of the skin, they may be suffering from hepato-Cellular Bile duct obstructive jaundice.
In either of these cases inform the elder's family, who would then arrange for a doctor's visit. Follow the doctor's orders for medication and diet.
Let us now look at the issues related to the other parts of the Gastrointestinal System. The other parts of the Gastrointestinal System are Gall bladder, Duodenum, Jejunum, ileum, Cecum, Appendix, Colon, Rectum, anal canal, and Anus.
The most common problem related to the lower Gastrointestinal System that elders suffer from is constipation. The elder under your care may be suffering from constipation if they pass stool less than three times a week or their stool is hard, dry and painful causing difficulty to pass.
A poor diet, that is low in fiber, lack of physical activity, medications, such as painkillers, anti-acids, anti-depressants, and iron supplements, can cause constipation. A change in the daily routine, like travelling and avoiding going to the toilet, which could be due to discomfort on the toilet seat or because they do not want to use toilets outside their home, are all common causes of constipation.
To help the elder suffering from constipation, increase the intake of water and vegetables and reduce non-vegetarian and grain-based food in the elder's diet. Involve the elder in some physical exercise. Inform the elder's doctor about constipation after a new medicine is introduced. Take care of the elder's comfort in the use of the toilet. Plan outings and travel time keeping the elder's toilet routine in mind.
If the elder under your care has severe constipation, the doctor may advise the use of a rectal suppository or Enema to induce stool. A rectal suppository is a medicine inserted into the Rectum that eases passing stool. Enema is a device that helps easy passage of stool from the body. Use these as advised by the doctor.