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Skin Care Fair Instruction Guide

Lesson: Be alert for anything that could create pressure on the skin, even objects or parts from worn shoes. Limited sensory perception, the ability to sense and react to pressure, is a risk factor for pressure ulcers. By inspecting the skin on a regular basis, objects/ equipment creating pressure can be noted.

3. Mom, you’re squeezing me too tight!

Objective: Shows how time and pressure have an inverse relationship (in a small amount of time if the pressure is great enough a pressure ulcer can develop) and how it is important to evenly distribute body weight over a large area so that one area doesn’t have more pressure then another. Pushing into a balloon with a fist makes it very difficult to pop the balloon verses pushing the sharpened end of a pencil into the balloon, which will create an area of high-intensity pressure with a small surface area, and the balloon will pop (develop a wound).

Step 1. Small balloon Step 2. Sharpened pencil

Step 3. Have participant apply intense pressure on the balloon with their fist first showing it would be difficult to break the balloon and then the sharpened pencil, preferably until it pops (just like creating a wound).

Lesson: Tissue damage can occur within a short period of time with high-intensity pressure (Bryant, 1992). Actions that minimize pressure, such as pressure reduction support surfaces in the bed and wheelchair, using pillows and wedges between bony prominences, heel elevation and timely turning and repositioning will help prevent pressure ulcers.

Hint: On daily rounds monitor to ensure heels are off the beds and equipment is being used appropriately.

4. Kick Your Heels Up! Objective: Show staff how to properly relieve the pressure from heels

Step 1. 2 pillows Step 2. Heel lift devices the facility uses

Step 3. “Bunny” boot only if available (to demonstrate how they don’t lift the heels off of the bed).

Step 4. Demonstrate with the pillow how to properly float the heels off of the bed (making sure the pillow is properly placed behind the entire calf, floating the heel) and how to correctly apply heel lift devices. Have the participants try them on to feel how they lift the heels up off of the bed, verses how a “bunny” boot doesn’t lift the heel off of the bed.

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