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Last night I figured out some nursing home DIYs (do it yourself or fix its). The oxygen machine was making noise, as it always does. It's supposed to make noise and give you enough oxygen so that the noise bothers you.
The machine was loud and none of the aides or nurses could figure out what to do. Half of them pretended like they heard nothing and kept walking.
Noise minimization is not part of the medical profession education. When you take on the job as a member of the medical staff, you're trained in noise embracement. They place you at the runway of an airport for a week, to make sure you can handle the noise. As the lay professional I figured it out how to minimize the noise, as well as other DIYs to help the families in nursing facilities, and when Chas vShalom, a loved one ends up in the hospital.
Loud Oxygen Machine
You're a normal person, so the sound of a lawnmower in your room is bothersome. It would seem that old people have accepted loud gardening machines by their bed, as they are old and the nursing facility staff knows that nobody will care if they complain. Half of them can't even talk. Nobody will believe them, because they are old. If they were to tell their child that there is noise pollution in their room, their child would go off on how their dad hasn't heard them for the past thirty years, and how dad was never there for them. That's why most old people don't complain. They don't want their kids going off on how they raised them wrong.
And then their child would say it doesn't bother them, because the child can deal with it for five minutes, until they leave in their silent car, a hybrid. And that is how we end up with all nursing facilities machines being crazy loud.
The machine was bothering me, as I was there too long. I am in my mid-forties, so I'm allowed to be bothered. Me being bothered is still legitimate.
DIY: Put a weight on the machine. I took a five pound dumbbell and put it on the machine. It stopped shaking like crazy. The staff was amazed. Brilliant! Less noise. Now it sounds like a vacuum in the room.
To get rid of all the noise, and get some exercise, I lifted the machine. The dumbbell was on it and I was in a bind. As I lifted the machine, I pulled the plug out of the wall and disconnected the tube. I would've kept holding the machine, but I had to head out after a couple of hours. The machine didn't make any noise when I was holding it. Not sure if it was my lifting it, or if it was my pulling out the plug. If you want to try your own DIY, you may just want to unplug the machine. See if that stops the noise. Do check with the medical staff though.
I have what are known as squeakers. Almost every pair of shoes I have are squeakers. They squeak. I walk everywhere with them and I hear no noise. I go into a nursing facility or hospital and I 'm the loudest thing there. Alarms are going off and people are staring at my shoes.
I end up waking up the residents when I pass their rooms. It gives my mom a warning that I am coming to her room, so see she can pretend like she is asleep; but you can't sleep when I am walking- which is why they make me leave at 9pm. I am not the greatest guest. All I know is that the shoes are loud on those floors.
Whatever disinfectant they use on them is loud. Everything is loud in these facilities, especially my shoes.
DIY: Load up the bottom of the shoes with soap. If that doesn't work, stick a Clorox pad to the sole. The hospital and nursing facilities have tons of Clorox pads.
DIY 2: Do not lift your feet. Slide the feet. Glide as much as possible. The lifting of the shoe is when the squeak starts. Crawling is even better. As some facilities don't clean very well, the maintenance staff will appreciate this.
Gliding doesn't always work. The last time I glided, my shoes got stuck. It's got to be the cleaning material.
DIY 3: Pretend like you don't even notice the noise. Squeakers bounce off the walls, and their sound can be thrown. The only issue is you coming in every day and squeaking. After a good week or two of squeakers, they'll know it's you.
You will hear a lot of groaning. That is there to add to the feeling of loud. I have tried, but no matter what I do, the groaning won't stop. It comes from everywhere. I think it's a natural reaction to being in a nursing facility. Everybody turns into an old Jew.
DIY: Close the door, so that you can focus on the noise of the oxygen machine.
Press the Button For Emergency
I was afraid to press the button at first, thinking I would blow something up. Then, I pressed it and nothing happened. Noise was going off. Nothing blew up, and nobody came down. They couldn't hear the call, as the runway noise cancellation training was good.
The only not loud noise seems to be the emergency button.
DIY: Walk to the nursing station. They will be sitting there. If they're not there, they are in the break-room. The idea is to catch a staff member and tell them you pressed the button. Then they will come down in fifteen minutes. They will have to finish whatever game they are playing on the phone; usually, that's not more than fifteen minutes.
It took me a while to learn this. They have fifteen minutes till they have to be at the room. So, always remember to warn the staff fifteen minutes before the crisis takes place.
For groans without a beep, they have forty-five minutes to get there. I've timed it.
Machine Beeping for Three Hours
The IV runs out. What happens? It starts beeping a constant beep that starts to pound your head. This high frequency can be heard by dogs and you.
DIY: Unplug it. Pull the thing out of the wall. Do it in anger. You will know when to do this. You will be extremely frustrated, and your head will be pounding.
Can't hear the thing. It's too low. If it's louder, all you hear is tin. It's like tin rattling and a bad walkie-talkie you and your friends thought would be cool in third grade. Then you realized that there's a reason truckers don't use Fisher Price.
The only thing you want to hear is the only thing you can't. With the oxygen machine, the beeping, the other resident groaning, they've decided to ensure that at least the TV doesn't cause noise pollution. The TV and the emergency buttons don't bother anybody, other than the people trying to use them.
DIY: Computer. Place a computer in front of the resident or patient. This is a great DIY, until it gets stolen. That could be a good evening of enjoyable screen time.
Make sure to also bring your own computer and earbuds. You'll need to get entertained, and there is no reason that you should have to deal with the outside noise.
Anything regarding care, do it yourself.
I've got to get a heavier weight for the oxygen machine. Why those things don't come with a weight set is beyond me. My head is pounding and the high pitch is going off. The IV is finished and the nurse is waiting till they hit us on the rounds. I think my visit is over.
***For a Refuah Sheleyma for חיה נחה בת ריבה לאה and all who need a speedy recovery, and shared laughter with their family and friends.
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Health and Healing
Humor, laughter and a positive outlook in the hard times. This includes Torah thoughts by Rabbi Kilimnick and humor from within.
With nursing facilities closed, this guy is trying to figure out why his kids are trying to break into the room, scoping it out. He's asking when his kids turned into a bunch of stalkers.
(Photo: The Guardian)