As your senior nears the end of her life, her body temperature may be fluctuating more than usual. If she’s still able to communicate with you, she might mention that she’s feeling cooler and then warmer. But if she’s not able to communicate, you may need to watch for signs of discomfort.
Her Body Isn’t as Able to Self-regulate Temperature
Between medications, illnesses, and other variables, your elderly family member might not be as able to regulate her body temperature as she used to be. This might mean that she’s spending more time trying to get comfortable than she really should have to. Watch for signs that she might be too warm or too cool so you can adjust accordingly.
Check for a Fever
Really wide temperature variations could indicate a fever. Hospice elder care providers can help you to spot the signs of fever and bring it down quickly. Depending on the other issues your elderly family member is dealing with, there may be quite a few options that can help a fever.
If your elderly family member is in bed, she may not need as much clothing on as she has been wearing. Wearing a light nightgown or even just wearing underthings can be comfortable enough. This is especially helpful if she’s been getting too warm. Also consider going with just a sheet and make sure that there’s plenty of air circulation.
Use Cool Compresses
Something else that can help is to apply cool compresses. Rinse a washcloth in cold water and then wring it out well so that it’s just damp. Pressing the cool, damp cloth to your senior’s warmest spots can help to cool her down more quickly.
Keep Light Blankets Nearby
The other side of the coin, of course, is that your senior might be getting too warm occasionally, too. Keep a stack of light blankets nearby. When she does get cold, it’s easy to have a blanket or two in easy reach so that she can get a little warmer. Stick with natural fabrics, like wool or cotton. The fabrics are breathable and they offer plenty of insulating warmth. When they’re light, though, they’re easy to toss to the side until they’re needed again.
Keeping your elderly family member comfortable at the end of her life is typically your biggest goal. These steps can help you to do what you can to stay on top of how she’s feeling from one moment to another.
If you or a loved-one are considering hospice elder care in Tucker, GA, please call the caring staff at Arcturus Hospice and Palliative Care today. Call 678-383-9973 today to speak to our care team.
Kate Gorinshteyn is the director of marketing at Arcturus Health Care. Arcturus is a fast-growing Hospice striving to provide the highest level of quality care to patients faced with life-limiting illnesses. Our goal is to make each patient as pain-free as possible and give physiological, emotional and spiritual support to both the patient and family. We understand that the decision change from curative to comfort care is difficult, and our team is trained to help you every step of the way!
We are proud to make a difference in the lives of those we serve.