Diarrhea - Home Care Interventions and Client / Family Teaching

NANDA Definition: Passage of loose, unformed stools

Home Care Interventions

1. Assess the home for general sanitation and methods of food preparation. Reinforce principles of sanitation for food handling.

2.Assess for methods of handling soiled laundry if client is bedbound or has been incontinent. Instruct or reinforce Standard Precautions with family and bloodborne pathogen precautions with agency caregivers. The Bloodborne Pathogen Regulations of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) identify legal guidelines for caregivers.

3. When assessing medication history, include over-the-counter drugs, both general and those currently being used to treat the diarrhea. Instruct clients not to mix over-the-counter medications when self-treating. Mixing over-the-counter medications can further irritate the gastrointestinal system, intensifying the diarrhea or causing nausea and vomiting.

Client/Family Teaching

1. Encourage avoidance of coffee, spices, milk products, and foods that irritate or stimulate the gastrointestinal tract.

2. Teach appropriate method of taking ordered antidiarrheal medications; explain side effects.

3. Explain how to prevent the spread of infectious diarrhea (e.g., careful handwashing, appropriate handling and storage of food).

4. Help client to determine stressors and set up an appropriate stress reduction plan.

5. Teach signs and symptoms of dehydration and electrolyte imbalance.

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