Nursing home residents often need assistance to access food and drinks. Without adequate help from home workers to receive liquids and meals, a senior’s health could suffer. You might notice such a case with your senior relative. Sometimes nursing home neglect results in dehydration.
If you suspect your loved one is not receiving enough liquids, pay attention to signs that could indicate your relative is suffering from dehydration. You want to spot dehydration early since advanced dehydration can turn into a medical emergency.
Symptoms of dehydration
To start with, your loved one might complain of severe, probably unquenchable thirst. According to WebMD, a dehydrated senior may also exhibit a dry, sticky mouth or have few or no tears. You might notice your loved one appears tired more often than usual, feels lightheaded or dizzy, or acts disoriented. Dehydration can also produce urine that is dark in color. More seriously, you might also observe black or bloody stool.
Dehydration caused by health conditions
Your loved one’s dehydration might not result from nursing home neglect. There are some conditions that put a senior at risk of dehydration, such as excessive sweating, fever, vomiting, diarrhea, and an increase in urination. However, if you are not aware your loved one has any of these conditions, you should check with your nursing home about recent changes in your relative’s health.
Pay attention to your loved one’s living conditions as well. If the home is not providing enough air conditioning, it could cause your relative to sweat often. Your loved one may also have diet problems that cause diarrhea. Be sure you can rule out neglect from the nursing home before you proceed with changes to your loved one’s care.