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Tips for Taking Care of Your Elderly Parent after a Hip Replacement

Living with multiple sclerosis may increase the need for walking assistants, like a cane or walker.Hip replacement surgery is one of the most common medical procedures in the United States.

On average, doctors perform half a million of these surgeries every year—and due to factors such as age and arthritis, most of their patients are seniors.

And while a hip replacement can very well improve a person’s quality of life, it’s important to take the right steps during recovery. Furthermore, because senior patients can be frail, extra care is needed.

Precautions to Take Before Surgery
Before your parent goes into surgery, set up a comfortable sleeping space on the first floor of the house, and preferably as near as possible to a bathroom or other area(s) he or she will need to access frequently.
It’s also a good idea to set up a comfortable chair (not too high or low) within easy reach of items such as reading materials and the TV remote. You may also want to add a handle or bar in the shower.

Also, make sure the paths your parent will be maneuvering along are free of debris and obstacles, e.g., rugs, bulky furniture or children’s toys. If there’s a pet living in the home, you may want to make sure it’s relegated to a specific area of the house and out of your parent’s way.

Caring for Your Parent after Surgery
While doctors will give your parent instructions on modifying some everyday tasks (e.g., getting dressed and getting into the bathtub), it’s important for you to help him or her complete these tasks if needed (especially at first).Give your parent the recommended dosage of pain medication as needed, and monitor pain levels to gauge recovery.
Make sure your parent elevates his or her legs on a regular basis, using pillows and blankets to prop up the legs. This will speed up the healing process and provide comfort. You can also apply an ice pack directly to the affected area to reduce swelling.It’s also important to be aware of hip implants that could be dangerous. Companies such as Stryker and DePuy have been in the news because of their problematic metal-on-metal hip implants, which have been known to cause metal poisoning. While it’s unlikely your parent received a faulty implant if he or she has had surgery recently, it’s still a good idea to speak with your parent’s doctor about the specific implant and its known complications.

Guest Blogger Jen Juneau is a staff writer for Drugwatch.com. She thrives on encouraging others to educate themselves about drugs, surgery and other medical options.

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Alvita Care is a fully licensed home healthcare company providing premier in home caregiver services to seniors living in New York City and on Long Island NY. With offices in Midtown Manhattan and Hauppauge NY, Alvita Care was founded in 2008 upon the idea of "Care Without Compromise". Our care-giving services enhance seniors' lives, by improving their well-being, dignity and independence. We have earned The Joint Commissions Gold Seal of Approval and pride ourselves with our proprietary caregiver matching process that carefully matches our experience caregivers to each client based on personality and technical skills needed. Alvita Care can help whether you need assistance for several hours a few times a week or you require live-in or around-the-clock assistance. Our caregivers provide assurance and relief to families by relieving their anxiety, knowing that their loved one is safe, happy and lovingly cared for.