Shortness of breath is something that everyone can experience in certain circumstances. For instance, if your elderly family member has a particularly long or strenuous exercise session, she might experience temporary shortness of breath. But when is shortness of breath something that becomes an emergency situation?
Your Senior Can’t Stay Awake or Stay Upright
If your elderly family member is seriously short of breath, she may find that her muscles aren’t working the way she expects them to work. She may have difficulty standing or even sitting upright. She may even find herself becoming extremely tired, even losing consciousness in extreme situations. It’s important to make sure that your elderly family member is at least seated if she’s experiencing this symptom, so that she doesn’t fall over and injure herself.
Your Senior Is Unusually Confused
Your senior’s brain needs oxygen in order to function properly. If her brain isn’t getting the oxygen it needs, she may appear confused or start to have trouble following conversations. At first some of the things your senior says might sound funny or strange, but if she’s having trouble breathing this can be a serious sign that she’s not getting enough air.
Your Senior Can’t Talk
If you’re noticing that your elderly family member can’t speak at all because she doesn’t have enough air in her lungs, that’s another bad sign. She may speak in partial sentences or seem to be functioning only partially. If she’s trying to respond to you but can’t get any words out, this might be a sign of bigger trouble. Don’t try to force her to talk, but keep talking to her to make sure you’re aware of whether she’s conscious or not.
Talk to Your Senior’s Doctor
There are several chronic health issues that could contribute to breathing problems, so it’s important to talk to your elderly family member’s doctor about what she’s experiencing and how you can help her. Your elderly family member’s doctor can let you know what specific signs mean big problems for her and when it’s vital that you get emergency assistance for her.
Senior care providers can help you and your senior to manage her episodes of shortness of breath. This is especially important when you need to be somewhere else and don’t feel comfortable leaving your elderly family member alone. When your senior is pushing herself too hard, senior care providers can step in and take over for her.
If you or an aging loved one are considering Senior Care in Keyport, NJ, please contact the caring staff at Lares Home Care 888-492-3538 or 732-566-1112.