Following a hospitalization, recovery could take a matter of days, weeks, months, or years. There are numerous factors that would go into determining just how long recovery might take. Age is one of the most crucial factors, and certainly the reason for the hospitalization is going to make a difference.
Many doctors admonish their patients to get proper support.
The older a person is, the more compromised their body might be. They may have difficulty getting around after spending a few weeks in the hospital, especially if that stay was the result of accidents, major surgery, or a serious health issue like a heart attack or stroke. Their body, their muscles, will have grown weaker during that stay, and it will take extreme effort, exercise, and possibly physical therapy to begin regaining adequate mobility.
Families often rally around one another.
This doesn’t mean everyone in a particular family is going to have the opportunity or willingness to sacrifice their time to be a physical and emotional support system to an aging person, but often there’s at least one or two who live close enough to this elderly person to support him, are willing to take a week or two off from work to be there when they are first discharged, and they believe this is going to be enough.
The reality is much different.
What many of these family members fail to realize is the value of support and experience. Yes, a person who gives up their job for a few weeks is going to be beneficial, but if they have never done this type of work before, they might not truly understand what’s necessary.
For example, many family members will discourage an aging parent, grandparent, or other senior from taking part in a variety of physical activities following a heart attack. The idea of getting exercise and elevating the heart rate is almost viewed as absurd. But, cardiovascular exercise is one of the most effective (and possibly the only) way to help strengthen the heart muscles, which is often crucial following a heart attack.
This does not mean, though, that every senior who recently had a heart attack should be exercising; more and more doctors recommend this, but each situation is different so seniors and their primary support system should understand this and seek clarification if they are not sure (by contacting their doctor).
An experienced and qualified home care aide would often realize the value in activity and exercise for many of their clients as a part of the recovery process. Experience matters, and this, unfortunately, is a truth that is far too easily overlooked when seniors are recovering following a hospitalization.