When a person is confined to a bed or a wheelchair for long periods of time due to illness, skin ulcers that are commonly known as bed sores begin to develop. This condition is quite common among the elderly, but they can develop in people in a coma or those rendered immobile due to various health issues. Being immobile and staying in one position for a long period reduces the blood flow to various parts of the skin, thereby causing severe sores or blisters.
Bed sores are red in color at the initial stage and as time passes, they start to turn purple. It is important to treat these sores at the earliest as they can break open if left neglected. Once they open up, infection can be caused and this infection can spread to different muscle areas in the body. The areas that are most affected by bed sores are lower back, buttocks, shoulder blades, hips, heels, joints, legs, etc (1).
Symptoms Of Bed Sores:
Bed sores are not difficult to detect, and this means you can treat them quickly before they get worse. Here are some of the symptoms that you should look out for:
- Itchiness in areas of the body which are under constant pressure (2).
- Skin lesions, especially on areas that are bony such as the joints (3).
- Skin that has reddened and does not turn white when pressure is put on it.
- Warm and tender sensation on the area affected by bed sores.
- Swelling and formation of pus, which emits a foul smell.
- Pain in muscles and joints.
- Blisters and sores which normally occur at a later stage.
These symptoms, once detected, can be easily treated to provide relief from pain. Inflammation and infection should be prevented as once they occur, patients can go through a lot of pain. It is important to make sure that the sores do not get scratched when they itch, as it can worsen them and spread the infection.
[ Read: Home Remedies To Treat Body Rashes ]
Preventing Bed Sores:
As mentioned earlier, it is best to treat bed sores as early as possible. You can also prevent them by taking care of them while they are still at the initial stage. You can prevent their progression by repositioning or turning the patient as often as possible, so that blood circulates evenly to all parts of the body (4). It is also extremely important to make sure that the skin is kept clean and dry at all times. A soft padding on the patient’s bed or wheelchair can provide pressure relief and prevent bed sores as well.
Worried how to treat bed sores? The good news for everyone is that bed sores can be treated naturally with a wide variety of home remedies. You do not need medications or expensive treatments. Home remedies are preferred by a large percentage of people across the world as they are safe and do not come with side-effects.
Here are 20 of the best home remedies for bed sores:
1. Aloe Vera:
The gel of the famous aloe vera plant is a wonderful remedy for bed sores. Apply the gel of this miraculous plant on the affected area every day to cure the sores and keep the skin soft and smooth. It also cools the affected areas, providing relief from pain as well as itchiness that is caused by the bed sores.
2. Sugar And Honey:
Another very effective home remedy for bed sores is a mixture of sugar and honey. Applying the mixture on the affected area two times everyday can cure sores quickly. The mixture is also helpful in removing any poison from the sores and preventing any infection from developing.
[ Read: How To Use Honey To Heal Canker Sores ]
3. Turmeric Root And Hazel:
Bed sores can be treated with this mixture by washing the affected area two to four times a day. It provides great relief from itchiness and pain caused by the bed sores. This is a simple home remedy that many people use to naturally treat the skin ulcers.
4. Vitamin E:
This is a very effective remedy for bed sores. Experts recommend applying Vitamin E oil to the areas affected by the sores as well as the entire body to gain relief. Apart from relieving pain and itchiness, it makes the skin smooth and supple.
5. Balanced Diet:
A healthy and well-balanced diet is important to treat bed sores. A patient should have a daily diet that is rich in Vitamins A, B, C, D and E. Zinc and iron are important nutrients for the treatment of bed sores as well. Experts also advise patients with bed sores to eat foods that are rich in fiber.
6. Petroleum Jelly:
This is an age-old remedy that is known to be highly effective in treating bed sores. It helps in keeping the skin nice and moist and heals the bed sores. Apply an adequate amount of the jelly to a sterile bandage and cover the wound. This will make the tissues around the sore regenerate quickly.
7. Milk Of Magnesia And Iodine:
This remedy is one that is used in hospitals to treat patients’ bed sores. It provides quick healing. A mixture of milk of magnesia and iodine needs to be prepared first and then kept aside for about 30 minutes. Once it is ready, it should be applied on the bed sores every few hours on a daily basis.
8. Slippery Elm And Comfrey Leaves:
A mixture of these two natural ingredients does wonders in healing bed sores. It can be made into a paste by taking equal amounts of slippery elm and comfrey leaves. Apply the paste on the sores and cover with a sterile bandage. The bed sores will be cured the next day when the paste is left overnight.
9. Talcum Or Baby Powder:
Applying talcum or baby powder can provide great relief for those who suffer from bed sores. It should be applied on the areas that are put under the most pressure or on the sores themselves. By preventing moisture, it stops sores from multiplying and prevents infection as well. Applying talcum or baby powder on the sores after cleaning them with a disinfectant twice a day will heal them.
A relaxing massage can do wonders for the treatment of bed sores. It improves blood circulation and prevents sores. It also helps in healing them. A gentle massage every day is recommended. You can use coconut oil, mustard oil, olive oil, etc. Make sure you don’t apply pressure to the bed sores.
This is a great home remedy for treating bed sores. The affected areas of the body should be sprayed with Lysol using a spray bottle. This should be done twice or thrice a day. It will eliminate the germs that cause infection and also speed up the healing process. This is an effective remedy that is commonly used to treat this problem.
12. Vitamin E Oil And Goldenseal Powder:
This mixture is another effective home remedy for bed sores. The antiseptic properties of the goldenseal will prevent infections and heal the sores faster. All that is required is a teaspoon of goldenseal powder and the oil of 2 Vitamin E capsules. If the mixture is still too dry, you can add several drops of olive oil and apply it to the sores three or more times every day.
13. Avoid Smoking:
Smoking dries the skin and reduces the blood supply as well. This is why it is so important for those who are immobile to avoid smoking. Due to the reduction in blood supply to the skin, it promotes the development of bed sores and also slows down the healing process.
14. Avoid Tea And Coffee:
Caffeinated beverages such as tea and coffee should be avoided by those who are bedridden or immobile. They have the same effect as cigarettes. To make sure that bed sores are prevented and proper healing of the sores takes place, it is best to stay away from these beverages.
15. Papaya Milk:
This is another soothing home remedy that can be used to treat bed sores. The “milk” of papaya can be found in its tree trunk or from the fruit while it is still green. Using a cloth soaked in the milk, apply it to the bed sores three times a day to gain relief from pain and itchiness. It will also prevent the sores from getting worse.
16. Turmeric Powder:
This is another common home remedy that is used to treat bed sores. All you need to do is sprinkle a small amount of turmeric powder over the area that is affected by the sores. This helps in disinfecting the wound and preventing any infection. Turmeric has many healing powers, and so it is definitely a great remedy for skin lesions and sores.
17. Myrrh And Witch Hazel:
This effective remedy works extremely well in the treatment of bed sores. Witch hazel has astringent properties while myrrh acts as a resin. Cleaning bed sores with a mixture of these two components two to four times daily will heal them fast and prevent infection.
It is important for patients with bed sores to drink plenty of water on a daily basis. It helps in keeping the skin hydrated and soft. It also helps in the removal of dead skin cells. Experts recommend eight to ten glasses of water daily to prevent and cure bed sores.
[ Read: Remedies To Treat Painful Armpit Lumps ]
19. Honey And Beetroot:
A mixture of honey and beetroot can be applied to bed sores to treat them. Apply the juice of 3 beetroots and 2 tablespoons of honey to the sores with clean cotton balls two to four times a day to heal them. It will have a soothing effect on the areas that are affected by bed sores.
20. Saline Water:
Bed sores can heal faster with the help of saline water. It will help in reducing excess fluids in the sores and eliminates dead skin. It also prevents inflammation and infection. Boil 2 teaspoons of salt in a cup of water and let it cool. Once it has cooled, apply it to the sores to clean and disinfect them. Let the affected area dry properly and then cover it with a bandage. You can do this several times a day and gain quick results.
As you have read earlier, it is best to prevent bed sores rather than taking care of them after they have developed. These sores can be extremely painful, making it even harder for patients to go through each day. Changing positions at regular intervals and keeping the skin clean and dry at all times is of utmost importance to prevent bed sores. The trick is to make sure that the pressure is not concentrated on one particular part of the body and blood circulation is always even.
Natural home remedies are best for the treatment of bed sores as they are simple and inexpensive. You can make healing mixtures using everyday ingredients that you have in your kitchen. You do not have to go through uncomfortable side-effects either. Apart from the home remedies mentioned above, you should also make sure that the patient’s mattress and pillow are soft. They should boost circulation of the blood and prevent pressure to specific areas of the body such as the back, hips, legs, buttocks, spine, joints, etc. as these are areas that are prone to bed sores.
Whether you or a family member is bedridden, make sure that you use safe and natural home remedies to treat and prevent bed sores. Some of the remedies will not only heal the sores but also provide other benefits to your skin. For instance, drinking plenty of water hydrates your skin and also removes harmful toxins from your body. With effective natural home remedies, you can gain relief from bed sores and focus on recovering from your illness without the added pain and discomfort that come with this problem.
Hope you this information helpful. Do you know any other treatment for bed sores? Share with us in the comments section.
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