Healthy kidneys remove toxins from the blood. In fact, they filter between 120 and 150 quarts of blood per day. When they are unable to do their job, toxins build up in the blood. If left untreated, the result can be a coma or even death. When you’re told that your aging relative needs dialysis, the prospect is unnerving, to say the least. Knowing more about dialysis and how it is used can help you to prepare for assisting your loved one through the treatment.
Dialysis is a medical treatment used when kidneys are damaged or when they have failed. It takes over for the kidneys and eliminates waste from the blood, so that toxins don’t reach dangerous levels. There are different kinds of dialysis, including:
Hemodialysis: This process involves moving the blood out of the body to clean it, and then returning the clean blood to the body. This procedure can take place at a facility or in the home.
Peritoneal Dialysis: During this procedure, blood is cleaned while it is still inside the body. Medical providers put a fluid into the person’s abdomen. The fluid absorbs waste through the small blood vessels in the abdomen and is then drained. This kind of dialysis is commonly done at home.
When is Dialysis Needed?
Dialysis is necessary when a person’s kidneys have suffered enough damage that they are seriously impaired or non-functioning. This may occur due to chronic kidney disease in which the older adult’s kidneys have slowly lost function over a period of time.
The timing for starting dialysis depends on the situation. Some people make the choice to start dialysis when their quality of life is affected by symptoms of kidney failure, such as:
The older adult’s doctor will determine when dialysis should begin. They can also inform you of the kind of treatment that will work best.
Caring for a Person on Dialysis
If your aging relative has been told they need dialysis, hiring a professional caregiver can be helpful. A caregiver can transport the older adult to and from dialysis appointments, which normally occur between three and five times per week. If dialysis occurs at home, a caregiver can sit with the senior to keep them company during the procedure. The caregiver could read to them or just sit and chat.
A caregiver can also help to manage side effects of dialysis. The doctor will inform the patient about dietary changes that will help. The caregiver can help prepare meals according to the plan and be certain the senior is getting enough fluids.
IF YOU OR AN AGING LOVED ONE ARE CONSIDERING IN-HOME CAREGIVERS IN LAS VEGAS, NV, PLEASE CONTACT THE CARING STAFF AT GOLDEN HEART SENIOR CARE. CALL TODAY 702-800-4616.