Bed Sore Stages & Treatment: Bedsores are also known as decubitus Ulcer, Pressure ulcer, or Pressure sores. They are open wounds mainly occur on the skin covering bones. The most common places for bedsore are your back, ankle, hips and buttock. Elderly people, disabled people, people with the injury like spinal cord (Paraplegic & Quadriplegic) are highly likely to suffer from this health condition. Apart from that, people who spend long periods of time in bed or in a wheelchair, people with fragile skin are also more at risk. A person suffering from bedsores may feel inflammation, pain or itching.
Bedsores mainly occur due to constant pressure on the skin. A constant pressure over skin reduces the blood flow and causes the skin to break down which forms an open sore. These type of sore could be just on skin or could go deeper into muscle and bone. For bedsores, medical attention is highly recommended. But with help of natural remedies bedsore treatment and prevention is possible at home. Natural remedies help in increasing the healing process.
Where does bedsore occur?
Bed sores mainly develop over bony parts of the body. The common area where bedsore occurs is an elbow, inner knee, back of head and ears, shoulder, lower back, hip and buttock, and heel.
Four Bed Sore Stages : Pressure Sores Grading
Bed sores or pressure sores mainly has four stages which depend on their severity. For each four stages, treatment and prevention are also different which includes.
- Stage 1
This is the beginning stage of bedsores. In this stage, skin is not broken. The skin color appears red for people with a lighter complexation. The skin got discolored for the people with dark skin. The infected skin may be painful, warm, cool, firm, soft, and tender.
- Stage 2
In the second stage of bedsore outer layer of skin (epidermis) and underlying layer of skin (dermis) is damaged or lost. The wound color may be red, pinkish, or blue. The Sore may look like a fluid-filled blister or a ruptured blister on the skin.
- Stage 3
At stage 3 of pressure, sore wound gets deeper and usually exposes some fat due to loss of the skin. The ulcer looks like a crater and yellowish dead tissue may appear at the bottom of the wound. In this stage, the damage may extend beyond the primary wound below layers of healthy skin. The wound may look like that it contain some pus.
- Stage 4
This is the most severe stage of decubitus Ulcer. In this stage, many layers are affected, including your muscle and bone. A dark substance called “eschar” may be inside the wound. The bottom of the wound contains dead tissue which is yellowish or dark and crusty.
A bedsore is unstageable when its surface is covered with yellow, brown, black, green or dead tissue. It’s not possible to see how deep the wound is or If the damage to your tissue layers is extensive.
Causes of Bedsores : How do you get Pressure sore?
- The most common cause for bed sore is constant pressure on the skin and tissues.
- Lying or sitting for long period of time can cause your bedsores.
- Pressure can also happen when you rub or scratch your skin against a hard or rough surface.
- Wearing undergarments for long periods may create open sores on the skin.
What increases the risk of getting Bedsores?
- People with a chronic injury like paralysis, coma, or surgery are more at risk. Because they cannot move for a long period of time.
- Bowel incontinence: Infection due to fecal matter can be dangerous and can lead someone to severe stage of pressure sores.
- Aging: As you grow older your skin becomes fragile, drier, thinner and less elastic. Old people produce new skin cells more slowly that’s why they are at more risk.
- Smoking: Regular smoking makes your skin dry which can be one of the reasons for bed sores.
- A disease like diabetes reduces the speed of healing process and increase the chances of getting bed sores.
- Spinal Cord Injury: If someone is suffering from spinal cord injury that person is more likely to suffer from bedsores. Because Paraplegic and Quadriplegic (SCI) are unable to change their position.
- Poor Diet: Lack of fluids, calories, protein, vitamins and minerals in the daily diet can lead to the breakdown of tissues.
Natural Remedies for Bedsore or Pressure Sore Treatment
Turmeric has anti-inflammatory, antiseptic and antioxidant properties which accelerate the healing process of bed sores. It is a good natural remedy for bedsore treatment at home.
- First clean the infected area properly with saline solution or sterilized water. Cover the wound with turmeric powder. Take a clean bandage and cover the wound for overnight. Doing this simple remedy every day will increase the healing process.
- Make a mixture of honey and turmeric. Apply this mixture twice in a day over the wounds.
- Take a glass milk and mix one teaspoon of turmeric. Drink one glass of turmeric milk daily.
- Talcum Powder
The best way to get relief is applying talcum powder on bedsores. You can apply powder on wounds or area which is more at risk like elbow or knee etc. It stops bed sores to multiply and prevent infection.
It is a natural antiseptic which helps to get rid of bedsores fast. This ayurvedic remedy will reduce the pain and inflammation of bedsore.
- Take one cup of hot water, add one teaspoon of goldenseal powder and leave it for 5 minutes. Strain this mixture and let it cool down. Wash wounds with this twice in a day. it will increase the healing and remove wounds quickly,
- Make a mixture of 1 teaspoon goldenseal powder and the oil contained in few capsules of vitamin E. Apply this mixture on bedsores for fast healing.
- Vitamin E
This is a very useful remedy for bed sores treatment at home. It can dry wounds and reduce burning sensation and itching in pressure sores.
- Apply vitamin E oil on the infected areas. Repeat this remedy 2-3 times in a day.
- Vitamin E oil massage on the body make skin smooth and supple.
- Elm and Comfrey Leaves
Another natural medicine to get rid of Pressure sores. These herbs help in regeneration of tissue and cure wound overnight.
- Take equal amount of elm and comfrey leaves. Add some water and make a paste. Apply the paste on the bedsores and cover with a clean bandage. Leave it for overnight to get a better result.
- Aloe Vera
Aloe vera stops the spreading of bed sores. It keeps affected area moisturized and ensures a quick recovery. This remedy is very effective to cure bed sores on buttocks.
- Clean the wounds with sterilized water. Apply the pulp or gel of aloe vera on the wounds. Do this remedy 2-3 times in a day. You can use aloe vera gel powder, cream or ointment for bedsore cure.
- Coconut Oil
Coconut oil keeps your skin healthy because it is a good source of fatty acids. It protects skin from damage caused by constant pressure. Full body massage with coconut oil increases the blood circulation.
- Take warm coconut oil gently apply on your skin and wounds. Repeat this remedy 2-3 times in a day.
- Papaya Milk
Another natural ingredient which can be used to cure bed sores at home. It gives you relief from pain and inflammation. Extract papaya milk from papaya tree trunk or from the fruit while it is still green. This remedy also prevents bed sore to getting worst.
- Take a clean cloth and soak in papaya milk. Apply it on wounds gently 2-3 times in a day.
It has natural antiseptic properties which help to heal pressure sores. It reduces itching, pain and burning sensation in wounds.
- Take equal amount of sugar and honey. Mix both wells and make into a thick paste. Apply this paste to the wounds and cover it with a sterile bandage.
- Extract juice of 3 beetroots and mix with two teaspoons of honey. Apply this mixture on bed sores with cotton balls 2-3 times in a day. It will have a soothing effect on the bed sores.
- Petroleum Jelly
One of the oldest way to treat bed sores. It keeps your body moist and stops spreading infection. Petroleum jelly also makes your skin smooth and healthy.
- Apply the jelly to a sterile bandage and cover the wound. It will make the tissues around the sore regenerate quickly. Change the bandage once in a day.
11. Saline Water
Saline water is commonly known as salt water that contains dissolved salts. It will help bed sores to heal faster. It helps to get rid of dead cells and stop infection.
- Add two teaspoons of salt in a cup of water. Boil the water and then let it cool down. Wash your wounds with this salted water 2-3 times in a day.
Pressure Ulcer: Bed sores Prevention at Home
Prevention tips you are in a wheelchair:
- For someone who is in a wheelchair, repositioning is very necessary to avoid bedsores. Shift your weight after every 15 minutes.
- If possible do wheelchair push-ups or lift yourself up.
- Go for a wheelchair which can tilt and has better cushioning.
When you are in bed:
- Changing position in bed is very important to prevent bedsore. If you are suffering an injury like the spinal cord, coma or surgery try repositioning after every one hour with the help of others or any device.
- Protect bony areas with proper positioning and cushioning.
- Clean affected area regularly with sterilized water.
- Try change bedding and clothing twice a day. If skin is too dry try the moisturizer.
- Do not drag yourself to change your position. Dragging causes skin breakdown which leads to bed sore. Take helps from other while changing position or getting in or out of bed.
Diet for Bedsores / Pressure Sores prevention
- Hydration of body is very important for skin. So keep drinking more water or fruit juice.
- Take diet which is full in nutritious. Eat foods which contain minerals, protein, iron, and zinc etc.
Other tips to Prevent Bed sores at home
- Mattress and cushions to prevent bedsore: Using a foam mattress pad, an air-filled mattress or a water-filled mattress to help with positioning, relieving pressure and protecting vulnerable areas.
- Quite smoking.
- Do not wear clothes which have thick seams, buttons, or zippers that press on your skin.
Note: Medical attention is highly recommended in bed sores in all stages. As soon as possible talk to your doctor or therapist.