Mom still can do her personal care for the most part. She does not use the kitchen anymore, nor does she drive or go anyplace unattended. Her spouse is taking care of her for the most part with help from my sister and myself 3 days a week. Mom is getting very frustrated because we can't always figure out what she is trying to say. She also thinks we are always talking about her or that we are plotting against her. She also believes her husband is fooling around on her. One time said him and… read more
I just put my husband of 55 years in a very good memory care unit for a weekend today because he was declining this week to the point I was beyond able to care for him alone. I hope he can come home but I’m not optimistic. He is incontinent and anxious. Very difficult to control in the evening and much too strong for me at this point if he decides to resist or push past me. I’ve used every tool in my box to keep him happy and compliant but he is beyond me and I’m exhausted after five years with no break except for a week last September when he was much better and his brother and sister in law cared for him. Our kids and relatives would not be able to handle him now. I’m exhausted and sad. I hope he does well this weekend and makes some friends.
March 29, 2018
I am happy to report three weeks later he settled in just fine in just a few days. They asked me not to visit for about a week so he could begin interacting with others and get used to the place. That was very hard because I missed him so much. But they were right. By the time I saw him he said he liked being there and liked the staff and he had met several new men friends to hang out with. He was so happy to see me!!
Now I visit four to six hours a day and can take him out for short rides and lunch on occasion. I decided to are this a permanent home for him because there are so many activities and excellent care givers. I’m finally getting more rest and feel stronger and happier than I’ve felt in years because I know he is in the right place for him! I’ve stopped crying every day and am now happy as is he.
Also... On entering "The Dementia Zone," there are a gazillion ways to handle someone woth decency. First of all.. dont expect them to remember. Anything. Especially new information. They really cant.
For the thousandth time. They cant remember.
So be prepared to answer the same question 100 times. Patiently. Like on the 100th time she asks, it may as well have been the 1st time.
When she asks if its time to do whatever.. and its not... just say "soon." Dont argue it out. Its not worth it.
Soon is a good word.
You have to change YOUR responses and reactions.
And if she gets agitated or starts with her weird and wacky delusions.. just offer her a little snack. Find a simple distraction. She will forget she was upset.
She WILL forget.
That is the only guarantee. Its terribly heartbreaking.
And always remember... SHE is suffering far more than anyone else is. So just remember.the one rule to seeing mom is... YOU have a functioning memory, and are entering the home of someone who has EXTREME memory problems. Its up to you to make changes. Appease her in any way possible. If she tells a story thats not true... whatever. "Oh wow..gee! Thats awful." Or "Oh you saw the cat on tv!! Nice!" Dont argue. Seriously.
Who cares that her delusions arent true?
Make a game of it. You know its her brain illness. Distract, appease.. and always be quiet and kind. Xoxo much love.
"How do I know." Great question. First, are we talking assisted living, or are we talking memory care. Is Mom a flight risk? Does she understand date, time, year, current events. How much "assistance" does she need with the six activities of daily living (ADL) including bathing, dressing, transferring, toileting, continence, and eating? Depending on your answer to that question is a good sign of need. good luck
I have just found an author Teepa snow. She has lots of u tube videos and discusses all kinds of different situations for caregivers. She has helped me tons in how to deal with mom. Would recommend her site and videos to everyone dealing with Alzheimers/dementia.
There were many little things which eventually helped make our minds up. However, the bottom line was safety. It is no longer safe for Mum to not be in a care home. We can manage her bills, her food, her medication but when she’s no longer safe, that’s the time to act.