Each year throughout the United States there are as many as nine hundred thousand cases of blood clots. Up to one third of these, as many as three hundred thousand people, will die as a result of the blood clot. This is more than died as a result of car crashes, AIDS, and breast cancer combined.

As a family caregiver, it is critical to not only recognize the pressing risk of blood clots, but also to be able to give your parent the care they need to help them to prevent these blood clots and manage them if they do occur. It is particularly important to note that older adults are at higher risk of blood clots, and factors common in seniors, including surgery and medical procedures, long periods of bed rest, and reduced mobility, all further increase potential for clots.

While prevention of blood clots is ideal, experts estimate that as many as 30% of blood clots are of unknown cause. This means you need to be prepared to help your parent handle a blood clot even with extensive prevention measures. Being able to recognize potential signs and symptoms of blood clots is an important step toward making sure your parent gets the medical care they need if they do experience a blood clot.

Caregiver Belton MO - What Are the Signs and Symptoms of Blood Clots?
Caregiver Belton MO – What Are the Signs and Symptoms of Blood Clots?

One form of blood clots is deep vein thrombosis, also known as DVT. These clots occur in the deep veins of the body, most often the legs, and are the type of people generally think of as being associated with travel, surgery, and other related risk factors.

Potential signs and symptoms of these blood clots include:

  • Swelling
  • Redness or discoloration
  • Warmth
  • Tenderness or cramping
  • Feeling of a pulled muscle

The other form of blood clot is more dangerous. This is a pulmonary embolism, or PE. These occur when a piece of a DVT or the clot itself breaks free and moves into the lungs. If not treated effectively, PE can be fatal.

Potential signs and symptoms of these blood clots include:

  • Sharp pains in the chest described as stabbing pains. These often get worse when your parent takes a deep breath
  • Sudden shortness of breath
  • Fast heart rate
  • Unexplained cough, especially if it comes up with bloody mucus

If your parent experiences any of these symptoms, get emergency medical care immediately.

As a family caregiver you may encounter care tasks that are challenging, sensitive, or simply not something you are comfortable handling. This does not mean you are not a good caregiver or that you don’t love your parent.

When these situations arise, you need to take steps to ensure the tasks are completed properly and in a way that protects the mental, emotional, and physical health and well-being of both your senior and you. Home care can be one of these steps. An in-home senior care services provider can step in to fill care gaps and take on specific tasks to ensure they are fulfilled respectfully, effectively, and on the schedule that is right for your senior and you.

Source: https://www.stoptheclot.org/learn_more/signs-and-symptoms-of-blood-clots/

If you or an aging loved-one are considering Caregiver Services in the Belton MO area, please contact the caring staff at Elder Care of Kansas City, today. Proudly serving Jackson, Clay, Platte and Cass Counties in Missouri as well as Johnson and Wyandotte Counties in Kansas for over 30 years. Call us at 816-333-3322.