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How To Care For Someone With Kidney Failure

How To Care For Someone With Kidney Failure

Guest Post By: Tena L. Scallan

What is Kidney Failure?

Kidney Failure DialysisKidney failure, also known as renal failure or renal insufficiency it is when the kidneys fail to filter metabolic wastes from the blood. Long-term kidney problems are associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular disease, renal failure, diabetes, decreased cognitive performance, coma and death.

When your loved one is diagnosed with kidney failure

You have to understand that when your loved ones kidneys have lost the capacity to eliminate wastes from the body. This condition can either creep in slowly or can be a sudden development. In either of the cases, you have to realize that your aging loved one is in for serious trouble, as kidney failure is not a normal occurrence.

Caring for aging loved one with kidney failure become necessary, as there are many things that need to be taken care of. From dietary changes to fluid intake, medications and doctor appointments, there are a lot of things that caregivers should take note of. However, knowing about kidney failure becomes important if we wish to take good care to our aging parents.

Understanding kidney failure

Kidney failure is a serious problem; over 48% of 500,000 Americans aged 60 years and above suffer from it. If kidney failure is left untreated, it can have serious consequences. Therefore, understanding the disease and its treatment methods becomes very important. Quick initiation of treatment can help in the better prognosis of the disease.

Kidney Disease

There are 3 types of treatment options available for treating kidney failure.

  1. Hemodialysis: A type of dialysis, which is done twice a week either at home or the medical center.
  2. Peritoneal dialysis: This type of dialysis can be done anywhere, wherever the clean place is available for exchanging the bags. The two types of peritoneal dialysis include automated peritoneal dialysis, which involves the use of the machine and continuous peritoneal dialysis, which does not require any machine.
  3. Kidney transplant: Kidney transplant is usually the last option when no other treatment methods are effective enough to bring about the desired outcome.

The above-mentioned treatment options for kidney failure do not cure the disease. These are only ways of effectively managing the kidney function. In other words, these treatment options, help carry out the function of kidneys externally. The type of treatment option can be decided by the doctor depending upon the degree of the problem and the kind of lifestyle your senior parents are habituated to.

Signs and symptoms of kidney disease

Many times our aging loved ones are not aware of the fact that they are suffering from the chronic renal disease. So, here is a checklist of symptoms to help them understand the warning signs our body throws when something is wrong with our kidneys.

Symptoms of kidney illness:

  • High blood pressure
  • There is a sudden change in the frequency of urination
  • Disturbed sleep
  • Change in the ability to concentrate
  • Lack of appetite
  • Shortness of breath
  • Fatigue
  • Pain in the kidney area
  • Blood in urine
  • The mouth develops a metallic taste along with bad breath
  • Vomiting accompanied by nausea

Ways to care for senior parents with kidney failure

Caring for an aging loved one with kidney failure is a pretty tricky task, as there are many things that caregivers should take note of. Of the many things that require attention, caregivers should mainly focus on the diet and fluid intake of their loved one. Since the kidneys are affected the elimination of waste is reduced to hardly any. As a result, there is water retention, due to which the water intake is restricted. Furthermore, there is also a restriction of the diet of the individuals, as the sodium and potassium levels have to be strictly controlled. Therefore, caregivers are advised to carefully monitor these two aspects.

Dialysis

The various ways to help with kidney failure:

  • Ask your loved one to quit smoking. This is because poorly managed hypertension and diabetes are some of the major culprits of kidney failure and smoking contributing to both. Therefore, senior parents are advised against smoking.
  • Stop alcohol consumption: Alcohol consumption is also considered to be the major reason behind kidney failure. Consuming more than 2 glasses of alcohol each day can disrupt the kidney functioning. Furthermore, if our loved one continues to consume alcohol even after kidney failure, then it can also significantly lessen the effect of dialysis and medications. Also, it would induce serious consequences.
  • Diet changes need to be made. Significant changes in the diet need to be made. For example – the sodium, potassium and protein intake need to be limited since the electrolyte balance is hampered due to kidney dysfunction. A salt-free diet is difficult to maintain, therefore, encourage the use of fresh herbs and other spices to make their diet interesting. Processed foods should be strictly avoided, as they contain large amounts of sodium and phosphorus, which may further aggravate the condition.
  • Start an exercise regimen: Encourage your loved one to exercise. Relaxation exercises are a great way to deal with the pain and anxiety that accompany kidney failure. Staying relaxed and stress-free is very essential to ensure the treatments have the desired effect.Caregivers are expected to carry out the above-mentioned guidelines, to help their aging loved ones gracefully deal with the condition of kidney failure.

Kidney Disease Signs and Symptoms


About the Author

My name is Tena L. Scallan and I am now offering consulting services on my blog http://www.theultimatecaregivingexpert.com through an Ask A Question button to answer any caregiving question. I am working out of Miramar Beach, Florida to serve everyone in the United States. Caregiving can be very stressful and sudden. The more you know, the more you can help. Please let me help you give your loved one tender loving care.

I am here to serve children of senior parents, and caregivers themselves. I would like to create a plan of action with advice and a strategy focused on how to best meet the challenges of your loved one’s needs on anything and everything caregiving related.

I am a passionate healthcare professional, business owner and best selling published author with over 25 years of experience in caregiving. I have dedicated my life’s work to caregiving. I firmly believe that both home and lifestyle can be preserved in-home with compassionate caregiving in the face of aging or illness.

EGAN Home Health and Hospice Website Survey

EGAN Home Health and Hospice Website Survey

EGAN Home Health and Hospice – Website Survey

EGAN Home Health and Hospice

Survey for visitors to EGAN Home Health and Hospice‘s primary website, EganHealthcare.com. The survey is designed to find out from visitors whether or not their needs are being met with the current site, and if not what could be improved.

At some point someone who completes the survey will be chosen at random to receive a prize. The prize is a $50 Amazon gift card, and the winner is randomly selected, not based at all on respondents’ responses.

Visitors may fill out the survey below.

If asked for a password, please enter EGAN1234 for the password (letters are case-sensitive).

 

 

EGAN Pediatrics Day at the Zoo

EGAN Pediatrics Makes Special Trip to Audubon Zoo

The care team at EGAN Pediatrics recently made a very special trip to the Audubon Zoo with a group of special needs children. By all accounts, it was an enjoyable day for staff, the children and their respective families alike.

For many making the trip, this was their very first-ever visit to the zoo.

For others such as assistant administrator Peter Egan Jr., it was his first visit in nearly 20 years. “It’s even more amazing than I remember it being,” an enthusiastic Egan stated.

The group arrived around 10 am. They split up into groups before meeting back up for lunch in the early afternoon. Some stayed until well into the late afternoon, with the Sea Lion exhibit being among the most popular attractions among the group.

Throughout the day, the specially-made blue EGAN Pediatrics t-shirts made for the event and worn by staff, patients and their families/caregivers could be spotted throughout the zoo. Approximately 60 people attended in total, including the children, their families and caregivers, as well as EGAN Pediatrics employees.

A wonderful time was had by all, and the event was so successful EGAN Pediatrics is considering making it an annual affair.

Scroll down to view some of the photos from the EGAN Pediatrics Day at the Zoo.

EGAN Pediatrics Zoo

Peter Egan Jr. poses for a photo with an EGAN Pediatrics patient and the patient’s caregiver.

 

EGAN Pediatrics Zoo Trip

An EGAN Pediatrics patient and her family pose for a photo during a recent trip to the Audubon Zoo.

 

EGAN Pediatrics Family at Zoo

A family enjoying themselves during a recent trip with EGAN Pediatrics to the Audubon zoo.

 

EGAN Pediatrics (Girl at Zoo)

A little girl having fun during the EGAN Pediatrics recent field trip to the Audubon Zoo.

 

EGAN Pediatrics (Family at Zoo)

A family enjoying themselves at the Audubon Zoo during a recent event hosted by EGAN Pediatrics.

 

EGAN Pediatrics (Group Photo)

A group of people including both EGAN Pediatrics employees, patients and patients’ family members pose for a group photo at the Audubon Zoo.

 

EGAN Pediatrics Zoo Field Trip

Family having fun at the zoo during the EGAN Pediatrics “Day at the Zoo” event.


More photos to come…

Gretna, LA Based EGAN Home Health Nurse Goes Above and Beyond

Patient’s Caregiver Makes Special Trip to Commend EGAN Gretna Nurse

Today we had a patient’s caregiver to walk into the Gretna home health care and nursing office because she simply wanted to tell us how exemplary her son’s nurse was. She stated that this nurse is very caring, attentive, detail-oriented, and truly genuine.

Gretna NurseShe went on to say that she only sees her son twice a week, but that she calls everyday just to check in on him to make sure he’s okay. She absolutely raved about this nurse and Egan Healthcare Services / EGAN Nursing as a whole. She explained that she’s had experiences before in the past with another home health agency in Gretna charged with caring for other family members, and although those nurses and agencies were good, they were nothing like this nurse and this company.

SO, thank you Leslie P, RN for exceeding the expectations. Great job on providing exceptional care to the patient and his family.