ADL, also known as activities of daily living, consists of basic self-care activities, including personal hygiene, ability to properly use the toilet, getting dressed, feeding and walking without assistance. People tend to lose the ability to perform these basic activities as they age or recover from surgery, therefore, requiring external assistance. ADLs are extremely important for an individual’s safety, for example, the inability to walk properly can risk the individual to fall and injure themselves. When they require assistance for two or more basic ADLs, their family would engage either for a nurse or caregiver to help their loved ones handle these activities.
What are the common ADLs one should pay attention to?
- Personal Hygiene
It is challenging for the elderly who suffer from depression, dementia and drowsiness, as well as patients with physical impairments or bed bound to maintain good personal hygiene. This can result in body odour, dental diseases, urinary tract infection (UTI) and many more. Care providers are able to assist the person by giving bed baths or brush their teeth, in order to help the patient in maintaining personal hygiene. Good personal hygiene is important in the prevention of illnesses, as patients recovering from surgery and elderly have weaker immune systems and are prone to infections.
- Continence Management (Toileting)
Patients with mobility issues would struggle with dressing themselves, such as post-surgery or elderly impaired from age-related illnesses. Care providers are often needed in these cases to assist patients in picking and getting into the clothes. The patient should be dressed in comfortable and safe clothing; the clothing should be the right size, as there might be a fall risk if it is oversized. A regular change of undergarments is also important, since it may lead to poor hygiene and infections.
Patients with mobility issues or chronic illnesses are vulnerable to feeding problems, such as having no teeth, not being able to swallow or hold a utensil. This may require the patient to use a feeding tube or someone to spoon-feed them. A balanced diet is important during recovery and ageing; therefore, it must be prepared with the right nutrients. Assistance from care providers may be needed for the preparation of food or looking out for warning signs of choking.
SeeQ 4 Care connects our team of nurses and caregivers, who specialise in providing high-quality care, to your loved ones requiring assistance with ADLs. We dedicate time to train them in assisting elderly and patients recovering from post-surgery in performing these ADLs in the comforts of their own home.