“Long-term care becomes necessary when people start struggling with tasks like bathing, dressing, getting around and taking medications—or with memory loss. Sometimes, food shopping becomes difficult, so older people don’t eat right, and the problem spirals into a hospital visit should they become weak and contract a disease such as pneumonia.
Home Care Providers Can Help Influenza and
Pneumonia Patients Get the Rest and Comfort They
Need for a Full Recovery
According to the American Lung Association, Influenza and pneumonia combined are the eighth leading cause of death among all Americans and the seventh leading cause of death among all Americans over the age of 65.
To help you recover more quickly and decrease your risk of complications, the Mayo Clinic advises the following:
Get plenty of rest. Even when you start to feel better, allow your home care provider to do the housekeeping and laundry.
Stay home until after your temperature returns to normal and you stop coughing up mucus. Because pneumonia can recur, it’s better not to return to outside activities until you’re sure you’re well. Your home care provider will be with you to provide companionship.
Drink plenty of fluids, especially water, to help loosen mucus in your lungs. Your home care provider will help to monitor your nutrition.
Take the entire course of any prescribed medications. If you stop medication too soon, your lungs may continue to harbor bacteria that can multiply and cause your pneumonia to recur. Your home care provider will help you manage your medications.
Influenza vaccination is also recommended since pneumonia often occurs as a complication of the flu. Pneumonia and influenza vaccines are covered by Medicare, as well as some state and private health insurance.