Have you ever had to stay in a hospital? If your answer is yes, you probably aren’t anxious to do it again any time soon. Especially since hospital-acquired infections and medication errors are fairly common. The good news is, there are things you can do to try and ensure you won’t be hospitalized.
Stay Informed – If you have a chronic condition, ask your health-care provider about early symptoms that something my be awry. Get to know what to look for and see your doctor right away if any of these signs occur. This attention to symptoms can make the difference between staying home and going to the hospital or emergency room.
Know Your Meds – Keep a list of all the prescription and over-the-country medications as well as health supplements you take regularly, including dosages. Have it handy so you can take the list with you when you have a doctor’s appointment. There is usually a medication review when you see your doctor, so make sure their list is always up-to-date. You may be asked to make some changes if you’re having reactions.
Watch Your Step – If you’re an older adult a fall can break a hip and put you in the hospital. You may be at risk due to impediments like poor visual depth perception, weak muscles or poor balance, all of which can come with age. To avoid falling be sure to get regular exercise swimming or going for walks. Ask your health care provider for information on what exercises you can do to improve your balance.
Eat and Drink Right – Don’t let yourself become undernourished or dehydrated. These conditions can affect you both physically and mentally. Your health care physician or support team can assess your diet and advise you on what you can do to avoid malnourishment and dehydration. Staying on top of these can help you avoid hospitalization.
Should you ever be hospitalized, improve your chances of avoiding readmission by doing your discharge right. Patients are provided basic instructions when they’re discharged, but take additional precautions. Make sure you and a friend or family member fully understand what’s required, before you leave the facility. This includes knowing about dosages and how often you should take your medications, how soon you should see your physician for a follow-up visit, how much activity you should have, what to eat and anything else that might be important to your individual care.
By focusing on pertinent information you will be more likely to avoid having to be hospitalized. It is also important to have adequate insurance coverage; find out more about insurance options here.