Thursday, July 1, 2021

How to Tell If a Wound Is Infected and How to Treat It

The human body has an incredible ability to heal itself and fight off harmful foreign invaders. Even with this ability, a wound can still become infected. With some severe infections causing everything from fever to sepsis, these infections are nothing to take lightly. Learn more about the signs of infection and how to treat them below.

How to Tell If a Wound Is Infected

A person adding bandaids to an elbow

Most of the time, minor wounds like small scrapes and cuts are nothing to get overly worried about. But if a wound does get infected, it's best to know the signs to avoid severe complications. One sign that a wound is infected is if it's warm to the touch for over five days. While it's normal for a wound to radiate heat within the first five days because the body is fighting off germs and bacteria, anything over this time could be a sign of an infection. Other signs of infection and improper healing to look out for:
  • Redness
  • Swelling
  • Pus
  • Increased scabbing
  • Discoloration around the wound
A patient should seek medical attention immediately if they've developed a fever; this is a common sign that the infection has entered the bloodstream.

How to Treat an Infected Wound

If an infection has occurred, it's normally best practice to see a doctor since most bacterial wound infections can be treated with an antibiotic prescription. Simple cleaning and antibiotics might not heal a severe wound. In these cases, a doctor might recommend closing a wound with stitches and giving the patient an injection to avoid more severe complications such as cellulitis, sepsis, or necrotizing fasciitis.

Unfortunately, injuries are sometimes part of enjoying the beautiful Texas outdoors. If one does occur, avoid severe infections by seeking wound care management from Midlothian Healthcare Center. Our team of experts offers comprehensive rehabilitation services that help patients get back to their routine. Get in touch today to learn more about our services.

Thursday, June 10, 2021

Signs a Loved One Needs Long Term Care

Research studies estimate that approximately 70% of individuals aged 65 and above require long-term care. However, determining the right time to help your loved one transition to an assisted living facility can be difficult, especially if you haven't handled something like this before. Exploring options for senior care can be daunting, especially since such decisions are riddled with inner conflicts of guilt, anxiety, grief, and relief. Watch out for these signs that can indicate that your loved one may need senior care.

Inability to Manage Daily Activities

Two people tightly holding hands.jpeg

Advancing age can make it difficult to perform activities of daily living. Getting dressed, going shopping, and bathing themselves on their own may be more of a challenge. Forgetting to take daily medication and failure to keep up with household chores are also signs that your loved one needs help.

Significant Changes in Physical Appearance

If you've noticed concerning changes to your loved one's appearance, it could be a sign of physical or cognitive decline. Key changes to note are declining personal hygiene and unpredictable weight fluctuation. Diet and nutrition are major concerns for the elderly, especially those with dementia. Therefore, be cautious if your parent suddenly loses weight. Also, watch out for large chunks of uneaten and spoiled food in the pantry.

Odd/Sudden Changes in Behavior

Changes in their habits can also be an indicator that your parent needs long-term care. Many parents don’t want to be a burden to their children, and they'll often try to maintain independence, even if it isn't in their best interest. It's crucial to note that extended periods of isolation can negatively impact their mental health and may lead to the development of serious conditions, such as depression and high blood pressure.

You should also watch out if your parent or loved one starts losing interest in certain social activities. Some seniors may start abandoning their favorite hobbies, going to church, and other outings that previously brought them joy. They may also exhibit memory loss, hearing loss, make poor financial decisions, or start wandering.

Contact Midlothian Healthcare Center

If you notice any of the above-mentioned signs, make it a priority to seek quality and compassionate care from Midlothian Healthcare Center. We've helped families throughout Midlothian, Mansfield, and Waxahachie areas find excellent care for their loved ones as they age and begin experiencing mobility issues. Talk to our experienced team to learn more about how we can help improve their quality of life through occupational, speech, and physical therapies.

Wednesday, March 3, 2021

What to Know About Returning Home After a Stroke

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one person has a stroke every 40 seconds in the United States. Strokes occur when the blood going to the brain is significantly reduced or interrupted, causing the brain to not receive the proper amount of oxygen needed to function. Knowing the signs of a stroke can help save a loved one's life and prevent additional severe strokes in the future. Once a patient returns home, show support by helping them transition back to daily activities.

Maintain a Healthy Living Space

An older woman sitting down with her head resting on her hands

After being discharged from the hospital or outpatient rehabilitation, caregivers should make sure the stroke survivor's living arrangements will safely accommodate their adjusted lifestyle during recovery. Having a relative or friend visit the home to help identify any safety hazards such as slippery floor surfaces or scatter rugs for better traction can help prevent injuries in the future. Stroke recovery program staff members can provide home evaluations, help coordinate grab bar and handrail installations, as well as recommend non-slip mats for showers. They can also demonstrate at-home exercises to maintain physical health and wellness.

Follow Stroke Recovery Guidelines

Recovering from a stroke will likely include lifestyle adjustments. The effects of a stroke impact people differently depending on which part of the brain was injured, how severe the injury is, and the person's overall health and wellness. Transitioning from inpatient rehabilitation back to living at home can pose challenges that recovering patients may not be able to handle on their own. Survivors recovering at home should regularly check in with their recovery team and continue at-home exercises. Support groups for survivors and friends can also help ease mental strain and foster comradery in times of isolation.

Know the Signs of a Stroke

The chances of a stroke occurring again within the first three months of recovery are significant. To understand the symptoms of a stroke, thinking FAST can help save a life.

F: Facial drooping: Noticeable drooping on either side of the face can indicate the beginning of a stroke. Ask the person to smile to see if this symptom can be identified.

A: Arm weakness: If a person is experiencing difficulty moving their arm or having trouble feeling it, ask the person to lift or move their arm to determine if urgent medical care is necessary.

S: Speech difficulty: If a person's speech is slurred, ask them to attempt to say a name or sentence. If this is challenging to the person and any of the above signs are also apparent, seek immediate medical attention.

T: Time: Immediate response and medical attention can significantly reduce the resulting damage of a stroke and help save a life. Call 911 immediately if any of these symptoms are present and new to the individual.

If you or a family member is in need of inpatient rehabilitation, seek compassionate and quality care at Midlothian Healthcare Center. Patients throughout the Midlothian area, including Waxahachie and Mansfield, trust our experienced team to help facilitate a healthy recovery and improve their quality of life through physical, occupational, and speech therapy services. Complete our online form or call 972-775-5105 to learn more about our rehabilitation programs.

Friday, February 5, 2021

What to Expect After a Loved One's Aphasia Diagnosis

Aphasia is caused by damage to the areas of the brain that manage language control and processing. This disorder is most common in people over the age of 55. Some of the leading causes of aphasia are strokes, head injuries, brain tumors, or other underlying neurological conditions. If a loved one has been diagnosed with aphasia or you suspect they may be suffering from this disorder, read our guide for some common symptoms and tactics for communicating effectively with them.

Indicators of Aphasia

Two loved ones sitting and talking together
The presence of aphasia symptoms can vary depending on several factors, including the extent of brain damage, the region of the brain that is damaged, and the person's overall health. Here are some common symptoms of aphasia:
  • Difficulty reading, spelling, and writing
  • Speaking only in short, fragmented sentences
  • Trouble annunciating words and sounds
  • Difficulty identifying familiar places, people, events, and objects
  • Substituting words incorrectly in a sentence
  • Inability to understand other people's conversations
If a loved one is displaying more than one of these symptoms, please schedule an appointment with a medical provider for an evaluation.

Recovery Outlook of Aphasia

Temporary forms of aphasia that are brought on by a minor stroke or transient ischemic attack (TIA) have higher recovery rates than other forms. In many of these temporary cases, symptoms will subside eventually because the brain damage was minimal and caused by an individual event. However, this does not apply to the majority of aphasia patients, and it can be difficult to determine the extent of the effects.

Treatment Options

Because aphasia affects the brain's language center, speech therapy is one of the primary treatments. Patients can use talking electronic devices to communicate by choosing images or typing out messages. Another tool that patients may be more familiar with is a portable whiteboard they can use to write out their thoughts.

The brain injuries that cause aphasia often have other effects that can impair a person's motor skills and other functions. In addition to speech therapy, occupational and physical therapy are often effective tools in their recovery.

Communicating With Someone Who Has Aphasia

It is often helpful to use short, simple sentences when speaking. You may need to repeat yourself and clearly annunciate each word. Using a mixture of hand signals, words, and drawings can also be beneficial. Finally, encourage them to communicate through whatever means they can and avoid correcting them if they misspeak.

Aphasia can have a significant impact on your daily life, but the team of healthcare professionals at Midlothian Healthcare Center can help you and your loved one build new, effective communication techniques. We offer a full range of speech therapy and rehabilitation services to patients in Midlothian, TX and the surrounding areas. As a family-owned clinic, we understand how important it is to feel physically and emotionally connected to the people you care about. To schedule an appointment with our staff, call 972-775-5105 or contact us online.

Thursday, June 18, 2020

How to Identify Stroke Symptoms

When a stroke occurs, immediate medical attention can limit brain damage and result in better outcomes. Sometimes, however, it can be difficult to identify the symptoms of a stroke. Call 911 if you or a loved one experiences any of these stroke symptoms, which you can remember with the acronym FAST.

F - Face Drooping

A man sitting on a sofa wincing in pain

Numbness, sagging, or drooping that affects just one side of the face often indicates a stroke. If you aren't sure, ask the person to smile. With a stroke, his or her smile will appear uneven.

A - Arm Weakness

If the person is unable to raise one of his or her arms, a stroke may be occurring. The arm might drift downward when your loved one tries to lift it. He or she might also experience numbness or weakness in one arm. In addition, any sudden numbness in the body could indicate a stroke.

S - Slurred Speech

Stroke can cause speech that is incomprehensible or difficult to understand. If the person cannot answer questions or repeat a basic sentence, dial 911. He or she may also display confusion with a stroke.

T - Time to Call 911

Any of these symptoms are cause for emergency medical care. Call 911 and describe your family member's symptoms. In addition to the common symptoms illustrated by FAST, stroke may cause a sudden, severe headache; dizziness, loss of balance, or difficulty walking; and difficulty seeing in either or both eyes.

The sooner a person having a stroke gets treatment, the less likely it is that he or she will experience significant disability. The emergency room doctors will administer a drug that breaks up the stroke-causing blood clot. Driving to the hospital wastes valuable time, since every minute matters when it comes to stroke care.

After a stroke, physical, occupational, and speech therapy support recovery and help the person return to his or her daily activities. Midlothian Healthcare Center is your source for stroke care in Midlothian and surrounding areas, with comprehensive services and specialized programs. We emphasize Christian values and treat each and every patient like a member of our family. Call 972-775-5105 or complete our online form to schedule your appointment.

Wednesday, April 8, 2020

A Guide to Hip Replacement Recovery

It takes time to recover from any major operation, and, although a hip replacement will leave you better off in the long run, you don’t want to rush your body. While the exact length differs for everyone, there are steps you can take to mitigate risks and get back to normal faster. Read on for a quick guide to safe, stable hip replacement recovery.

The First Week

The first days are some of the most important after hip replacement. Regardless of the type of surgery, you’ll probably be using crutches or a walker to get around; light movement will help your body rebound. This is also when you’ll engage with physical therapy to learn the right ways to move. Before going in for surgery and after you get home, be sure to establish your medication routine and walk carefully but frequently. You’ll avoid blood clots and strengthen your legs in the process.

Second and Third Weeks

As time wears on, you should be able to transition to a cane and take showers as normal. You’ll likely have your surgery staples removed around the 10-day mark. However, it’s still important to stick to your exercise regimen, continue taking prescriptions, and move about as much as possible. This is also the time to watch out for infections, as you’re most likely to develop one during this period.

Four Weeks and Beyond

Once you’ve regained the ability to walk without aid, you’ll slowly return to other regular activities. You should be able to drive again somewhere between three and six weeks, and sexual activity may resume. Between six and twelve weeks will be when you can expect to work and engage in a low-risk exercise like swimming. Anything more strenuous should be discussed with your doctor, and you should keep in touch with them throughout the process.

The most vital steps you can follow are to stay active, eat well, and take your recovery slowly. Though it may take some months to fully rebound from your hip replacement, your health is worth the wait. At Midlothian Healthcare Center in Midlothian, TX, we understand that the journey from hospital to home can be daunting, so we provide a full register of rehabilitation services to assist you as your whole body heals. Contact us today to learn more about the quality care we provide.

Thursday, February 27, 2020

What to Expect When Undergoing Speech Therapy

Doctor consoling patient with his hand on her shoulder
Speech therapy is helpful for people experiencing speech problems either due to injury or illness. Understanding what speech therapy is and what it entails can be helpful before beginning therapy. Here are helpful tips on what to expect when undergoing speech therapy.

Disorders and Conditions Treatable Through Speech Therapy

Speech therapy is ideal for individuals with various forms of speech disorders such as fluency, articulation, receptive, resonance, and cognitive-communication disorders. Moreover, speech therapy is also helpful to patients suffering from aphasia and dysarthria. Individuals who have a hard time expressing themselves, mainly due to Down syndrome and hearing loss, can help improve their communication by undergoing speech therapy.

Tests and Assessments Before Speech Therapy

To understand the needs of a patient, speech-language pathologists (SLPs) administer several standardized tests. The main purpose of the tests is to determine whether the client is eligible for speech therapy and come up with a baseline of data. After that, the therapist can understand the nature of the treatment the patient needs. Once the tests have been analyzed, a patient can start speech therapy right away. Some of the activities involved in treatment may include speech therapy apps, games that facilitate language development, and problem-solving.

Education, Participation, and Compensation Strategies

Counseling and education are the key components of speech therapy. Not only do they impact the therapeutic process, but they also help a patient come to terms and understand the nature of their condition. Compensation strategy involves training the patients and people around them with skills to substitute for their difficulty in communication. Notwithstanding, it is vital for any patient undergoing speech therapy treatment to participate in the process. At the same time, the patient may be required to make an effort to interact with new people or speak on the phone to build on confidence.

Speech therapy can improve speech for individuals with speech disorders and boost their self-esteem and confidence. At Midlothian Healthcare Center, we provide our patients with affordable and personalized health care to enable them to recover effectively. Our rehabilitation and nursing team is dedicated to the physical and mental wellbeing of our patients. Contact us for professional and quality healthcare services.