Maintaining healthy skin and wound healing is a complex process where many factors—including nutritional status—can affect outcomes. Proper nutrition and hydration play an important role in keeping the skin healthy. Unfortunately, a majority of patients and residents do not consume adequate nutrition due to a variety of reasons including decreased appetite, which commonly results in weight loss. This patient weight loss is a key indicator of under-nutrition or malnutrition, which can be a factor in skin breakdown, decreased wound healing and increased risk of infection. Adequate nutrition is important for preventing pressure injuries and for helping wounds heal, while a balanced diet containing protein and calories is essential for building tissue.
Upon completion of the course, the learner will be able to:
- Describe the components of a well-balanced diet
- Review some causes of inadequate nutrition
- Understand the importance of proper hydration
- Recognize signs of malnutrition and dehydration
- Understand how a basic tube feeding works
This educational activity was developed for nursing assistants.