Disposing of waste - Assisting a family member


Assisting a family member

Assisting a family member

Dispose of the waste

Perineal Hygiene Managing Evacuations Constipation: Preventing and Treating It Without Drugs Stomies Enema Vaginal Drug Application
  • Perineal hygiene
    • The instruments
    • Procedure in humans
    • Procedure in women
  • Manage evacuations
  • Constipation: prevent and treat it without drugs
  • ostomy
  • Enema
  • Vaginal drug application

Eliminating waste is a need of all living things. The slag must be disposed of because, otherwise, the organism would poison itself and could no longer introduce other foods. Many diseases cause damage to organs responsible for the disposal of organic waste (e.g. kidney failure). The elimination of the materials that are no longer used takes place through the routes designated for disposal (called excretions). These materials are concentrated in the urinary and intestinal tracts, and the end products are called urine and feces respectively.

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Perineal hygiene

Genital hygiene, i.e. intimate hygiene, is also called perineal hygiene. This type of cleaning, if carried out by other people for lack of strength of the assisted person or for other reasons, can cause considerable embarrassment both for those who receive it and those who perform it. For this reason it is necessary to favor the autonomy of the individual so that he can autonomously clean but, in the event that the person is unable to carry out the hygienic care independently, compensatory or substitute interventions are necessary. Safeguarding privacy is fundamental.

To carry out hygiene, it is good to know some important rules. Hygiene of the perineum, although it may seem trivial, is not at all; an incorrect procedure can cause infections and in some individuals with compromised general conditions these infections are responsible for systemic reactions, that is, they affect the whole organism, with fever and even important risks. So it is good not to underestimate what you are about to undertake. The general principles that must be respected are the following.

  • Start washing from the cleanest and dirtiest areas. If you do the reverse, microbes are scattered everywhere!
  • Since hygiene is performed when the person is in bed and needs to be "undressed", it is possible to view the skin and highlight possible damage (sores, skin infections, hernias, etc.).
  • Environmental care: privacy, temperature, lighting, comfort are factors to which particular attention must be paid.

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The instruments

The necessary material for carrying out bed hygiene is the following:

  • disposable and waterproof sleepers;
  • disposable, non-sterile gloves;
  • cooking pan;
  • pitcher of lukewarm water;
  • intimate hygiene soap (pH 5.5);
  • knobs, preferably disposable;
  • clean linen;
  • towel;
  • plastic bag to eliminate waste.

If the person is able to collaborate, it is good to ask if he must evacuate before treatment, in order to avoid doing the job twice.

Preparing the environment basically means regulating the temperature, closing the curtains and making sure that there is the right lighting. The bed is prepared by positioning the disposable crossbar with the absorbent part facing upwards and the plasticized part in contact with the mattress.

The technique consists of four stages:

  1. inserting the pan;
  2. perineum hygiene;
  3. Flushing;
  4. drying.

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Procedure in humans

The procedure varies according to the sex of the patient: if this is a man, it is necessary to place him in a supine position, discover the part to be washed, make the legs flex and insert the pan. It is necessary to try to catch any signs of damage to the skin, such as maceration or skin infections.

Then proceed with putting on the gloves, pouring a knob of soap on the dampened knob and starting the cleaning starting from the inside of the thigh, both on the right and on the left; you then approach the penis, discovering the foreskin and exposing the glans penis (the top of the penis). This maneuver is of fundamental importance for correct intimate hygiene.

If hygiene is not practiced on the glans penis, then if the tip of the penis is not exposed with the previous operation, it is impossible to remove the whitish substance, called smegma, which forms regularly and is responsible for possible infections.

The glans, penis and scrotum (the bag containing the testicles) must therefore be carefully washed and rinsed thoroughly; cover the glans only after rinsing it well and continue towards the buttocks, then finish with the anus. Forgetting to cover the glans penis may cause swelling and choking (edema) of the tip of the penis. At the end of these operations, you can remove the pan and eliminate all the waste material in the toilet.

It is important never to wash from the buttocks going from the anus to the penis, because bacteria would be taken to a foreign and potentially dangerous site.

At the end of the cleaning, it is good to dry the creases carefully, so as to leave the skin well dry. A hairdryer can be used in addition, being careful not to burn the affected part. Of course, before using the hairdryer, the basin containing the water must be removed!

If you notice reddened areas, you can apply a "veil" of zinc oxide paste, without exceeding the doses, since the opposite effect would be produced. After doing all this, you can remove the crossbar and have the patient put on clean linen.

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Procedure in women

If you assist a woman, as in the previous case, she is placed in a supine position, the part to be washed is discovered and, making her legs flex, she puts the pan under her buttocks. Again, you should try to catch any signs of skin damage, maceration or skin infections.

After putting on the disposable gloves, pour a knob of soap on the dampened knob and clean the inside of the thigh, right and left; once you get to the genitals, we proceed with the cleaning of the mount of the pubis (the so-called mount of Venus), cleansing the labia majora from top to bottom and, therefore, opening and washing the labia minora. It is important to linger around the clitoris and remove the secretions that tend to settle spontaneously and facilitate the onset of infections.

The actual cleaning operation is concluded with the hygiene of the buttocks and anus, making the water flow out into the pan with abundant rinsing. At this point, you can remove the pan and eliminate the contents in the toilet.

It is important never to wash from the buttocks and anus to the vagina and urethra, because this would risk bringing dangerous bacteria into the area and therefore triggering infections.

At the end of the wash, you can proceed with drying the creases carefully. It is important that the skin remains dry, since humidity favors the onset of infections (for this purpose, being very careful not to burn the patient's skin, you can also resort to the use of a hairdryer, choosing the lower degree of heat).

If you notice reddened areas, you can apply a "veil" of zinc oxide paste (the same that also applies to infants, to the change of diapers, if they have redness), being careful not to exceed the doses, as it is would have the opposite effect. The last step is to remove the crossbar and have the patient put on clean linen.

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