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Are contaminated mattresses a problem in nursing homes?

by | Feb 27, 2023 | Nursing Home Abuse And Neglect

When you have a loved one in a nursing home, you expect excellent care.

While you may focus on the needs, room set up and services, you may easily overlook the bed. Although the FDA has guidelines for regularly inspecting hospital beds, you never know if the facility religiously follows the rules.

1. Why do mattresses get overlooked?

Cleaning covers and bedding requires minimal work. Replacing a torn or stained sheet comes at a minimal cost. Beds, on the other hand, come with an investment. Like with anything, getting the most out of them becomes a goal. Unfortunately, the way mattresses get made creates the potential for hidden damage that may lead to serious issues for the person using it.

2.  How do mattresses get contaminated?

Modern mattresses have a series of layers and varying materials, many of which have a porous quality. While the foam provides needed comfort, it can also quickly absorb materials without anyone noticing. Over time, bodily fluids and other potentially harmful liquids may start to build up. Many of these fluids contain pathogens that may spread.

3. What risks does a loved one face?

From bugs to chemicals and germs, all have the potential to create severe skin infections. If you have a loved one with a compromised immune system, a simple rash could become a much bigger problem. One of the most dangerous risks associated with contamination revolves around exposure to the Staphylococcus bacteria. Although relatively harmful to the skin, it can lead to pneumonia, internal infections and sepsis if it enters the body through a wound.

When doing your due diligence at a facility, adding the bed mattress to your checklist may help your loved one avoid an unnecessary illness.