Bedsores, also known as pressure ulcers, occur when continuous pressure is placed on a certain area of the body. This pressure can cut off the blood supply to the skin and tissues beneath, making it become red and inflamed. It can be a painful and frustrating condition to deal with, causing discomfort and limiting mobility. If left untreated, bedsores can become worse and lead to further complications.
Treating bedsores can be a difficult and expensive process. There are many over-the-counter medications and treatments for bedsores available, but they can have side effects and can be costly. Fortunately, you can treat bed sores naturally in the initial stages.
This post covers some of the best home remedies for treating bed sores that can help you get relief without resorting to expensive medications. These home remedies are known to help ease pain and promote healing, making it easier to manage pressure ulcers.
The post also includes the best ways to apply these remedies, as well as how often you should use them, so you can get the most benefit from them. From honey and tea tree oil to aloe vera and herbs, here are the most effective home remedies for treating bedsores.
Common Causes of Bedsores
Bed sores can be caused by a variety of factors. The primary factors include immobility, poor nutrition, medical conditions and aging.
People who are confined to a bed or wheelchair for long periods of time are at the most risk of developing bed sores. Their position creates constant pressure on certain parts of the body, restricting blood flow and oxygen supply to these areas. It deprives the tissue of essential nutrients causing them to break down and disintegrate over time.
Poor nutrition may also make your skin more prone to cracking up when exposed to constant pressure. If your body does not get the nutrients it needs to stay healthy, it can get injured or infected.
Some medical conditions, such as diabetes or heart disease may also weaken the skin’s ability to heal. They can cause paralysis, reduce circulation, or weaken your immunity, which can make you prone to bedsores.
The production of collagen in your body also decreases as we age. This means that our skin loses its resilience as it grows old. That’s why elderly individuals are more likely to develop bed sores.
Skin Irritation and Friction
With restricted blood supply, your skin becomes more sensitive. In such a situation, the slightest of skin irritation, friction from tight clothing, or excessive movement can cause a breakdown of tissue, which can quickly turn into a bedsore.
Prevention of Bed Sores
The best way to treat bed sores is to take measures to prevent them from occurring in the first place. Here are some preventive measures that you can employ:
- Practice proper hygiene habits such as washing and drying your skin regularly.
- Keep your skin moisturized to maintain healthy skin tissue that is more resilient to wounds caused by prolonged pressure.
- Change positions regularly to redistribute pressure points on the body. This way, no single area will stay in contact with the bed surface for too long.
- Use pressure-relieving products such as foam cushions or air mattresses to help eliminate prolonged pressure exposure.
- Proper nutrition also helps maintain overall body health which reduces susceptibility to pressure ulcers.
- Wearing loose clothing and avoiding tight or restrictive clothing are also good strategies for preventing bed sores.
Home Remedies For Bed Sores
Bed sores are an unfortunate reality for those who spend an extended amount of time in bed or lie in one position. Although anyone can develop them, those who are ill or debilitated, such as elderly individuals, are most at risk for bedsores. They typically form on the spine, tailbone, and hips, but can also develop on any area of the body when there is a lot of pressure and limited mobility.
While seeing a doctor is the best option for treating bedsores even in the initial stages, there are a number of home remedies that may be effective in relieving the discomfort caused by bed sores, including:
Aloe vera is a popular and most commonly used home remedy for bedsores. It has long been used in traditional medicine as a natural healer and is known to contain anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties.
To use aloe vera, extract some gel from the plant’s leaves and apply it directly to the affected area. Leave it on for 15-20 minutes then rinse off with water. Repeat this twice daily to reduce inflammation and sting from the sore. You can also take a fresh aloe vera leaf and rub it directly to the affected area as often as needed.
Honey is another great home remedy for treating and managing bedsores. It is a natural antibacterial agent and contains several essential minerals, vitamins, and phytonutrients. It can aid in healing, while providing relief from discomfort and pain associated with bedsores.
There are many ways to use this remedy. You can mix equal parts honey and plain yogurt together and apply it to the affected area three times per day. The honey will help soothe the area while the yogurt provides hydration to keep the skin from becoming too dry.
It is also possible to apply raw honey to the sore area and leave it on. After 30 minutes, rinse it off with lukewarm water. You also can make a paste by mixing two tablespoons of honey with one teaspoon of olive oil and apply it to the affected area. Leave it on for 20 minutes then rinse it off with water. Repeat this once daily for best results.
Turmeric has strong anti-inflammatory properties. It has many benefits and can be used to speed up the healing process. It contains anti-inflammatory agents that can help reduce swelling and discomfort associated with bedsores. To use this remedy, mix one teaspoon of turmeric powder with enough warm water to make a thick paste, then apply it directly to the affected area. Use twice a day for the maximum effect.
You can also use turmeric and honey together. Make a paste by mixing one teaspoon of turmeric powder with half teaspoon of honey and a few drops of water. Apply this paste to the affected area and let it sit for 20 minutes before washing off with warm water. Applying this paste regularly soothes inflamed skin and speeds up the healing process.
Tea Tree Oil
Tea tree oil has long been used as an alternative medicine for its antibacterial and antifungal properties. These properties make it effective for treating bed sores as well. It helps get rid of bacteria that can cause irritation in bedsores while also helping them heal faster.
To use this remedy, combine 10 drops of tea tree oil with two tablespoons of carrier oil. You can use olive oil, almond oil, or coconut oil. Apply this mixture to the affected area twice per day or as often as needed. You can also dilute tea tree oil with water and apply it directly to the affected area. Leave it on for 20 minutes then rinse off with lukewarm water. Repeat this twice daily until the sore has healed.
Vitamin E oil is another great home remedy that can help relieve discomfort caused by bed sores. Vitamin E is an antioxidant that helps reduce inflammation associated with bed sores. With its anti-inflammatory properties, it reduces the pain and inflammation, and also encourages new skin cells to form over the injured cells.
Break open a vitamin E capsule and apply its contents directly to the sore. Massage gently in circular motions for 10 minutes before rinsing off with lukewarm water. Do this twice daily until the sore heals. For maximum recovery, purchase high quality vitamin E capsules. Make sure you get exclusively non-synthetic vitamin E oil as synthetic forms may not be beneficial when applied topically.
Calendula is a herb that has long been used in traditional medicine due to its antibacterial, anti-inflammatory and antifungal properties. It effectively heals bed sores by soothing irritation and promoting quicker healing time.
Boil two tablespoons of dried calendula petals in one cup of water for 10 minutes. After the liquid has cooled down, strain and separate the petals. Now mix one tablespoon of coconut oil into the liquid, and apply directly onto your bed sores using a cotton swab or bandage coverlet. Leave it on overnight or for at least 20 minutes before rinsing off completely with lukewarm water. Repeat this twice a day until the wounds are healed.
Another way to use calendula flowers as a remedy for bed sores involves steeping it like tea (learn some interesting facts about tea here). Take one tablespoon of calendula flowers and let them steep in eight ounces of boiling water for five minutes. Strain, cool and apply the liquid directly to the affected area up to three times per day or as needed.
Coconut oil is a great home remedy for bed sores. It has anti-fungal, antibacterial, and analgesic properties which can help relieve pain and discomfort caused by the bed sores. The versatile oil can prevent infections from developing in the affected area and help it heal much faster by providing essential nutrients such as vitamin E and K. It is also rich in fatty acids that promote healthy cell growth, marginally increasing the healing speed.
To use this remedy, apply a generous amount of extra-virgin coconut oil around the affected area. Use circular motions to promote blood flow. You can let your skin absorb it completely, or rinse it off with lukewarm water after ten minutes. Do this twice daily or as needed until symptoms subside.
Taking preventative measures against bed sores is important to avoid the discomfort and potential complications from infections. Home remedies can be an effective treatment option when treating existing bedsores.Above, you learned about the most effective home remedies for treating bed sores. Incorporating these natural remedies into your treatment plan can help reduce the discomfort while also speeding up recovery time from these painful skin ulcers.
While all of these are generally safe and do not have any side effects, you should still consult your doctor before using them to ensure they are safe and appropriate for your condition. Home remedies are not always enough for severe cases. So, if your symptoms worsen or you see no change in your condition, then it is important to immediately seek medical attention.