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 Hired Caregiver's Guilt Trip 
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Joined: Tue Dec 29, 2009 2:28 pm
Posts: 464
Location: Minnesota
Post Re: Hired Caregiver's Guilt Trip
Thanks, Lynn. Mom's always been very pragmatic. It's helped her deal with a lot of less than perfect situations in her life. Consciously effort or not, it seems to be helping her now, too.

SandwichMom, it could be that your Mom is being classified as a "two person lift." That may not have anything to do with size. It could be that she just can't help when she is being lifted. Two to three falls a day are a lot. I'm glad you are getting your Mom into a dementia unit that can take good care of her. Don't expect that the move will lessen her falls any. If anything, when my Mom moved into an SNF, her falls increased because she couldn't have someone like me following her around ready to catch her. And the aides can't always get to her immediately so she is stubborn enough to try to stand up by herself. But at least there is a nurse there 24/7 to deal with any damage - and there hasn't been much of that.

See if you can get your Mom's doctor to talk to the dementia unit's admission people. If the facility has more units than just dementia, they might get her into another section until an opening comes up. That's what the hospital social worker did for my Mom. She was admitted into a rehab unit for three weeks until a place in the dementia unit was available. It wasn't ideal, but there were enough staff to lift her when needed and do regular checks on her to be sure she didn't do anything she shouldn't. Talk directly with the dementia unit administrator yourself, too. But more seems to happen when medical people talk to medical people.

Good luck. You're lucky your Dad is in good shape to deal with this, but it is still a lot for anyone. And, as much relief as he will find when your Mom is in the dementia unit, it will be hard for him, too. It won't just be loneliness. He'll be at loose ends when he has less demanding his attention all day. Give him our best and let him know that we're here if he needs us.

Kate

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Kate [i](Cared for Mom for years before anyone else noticed the symptoms, but the last year of her life was rough and we needed to place her in an SNF, where she passed in February 2012)[/i]


Thu Aug 18, 2011 8:42 am
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Joined: Wed Dec 30, 2009 1:46 pm
Posts: 3213
Location: WA
Post Re: Hired Caregiver's Guilt Trip
I met a gentleman whose wife was in a dementia facility and who spent most of his days there, taking all his meals with her in the dining room. He didn't like to cook for himself at home so it worked out well for both of them.

_________________
Pat [68] married to Derek [84] for 38 years; husband dx PDD/LBD 2005, probably began 2002 or earlier; late stage and in a SNF as of January 2011. Hospitalized 11/2/2013 and discharged to home Hospice. Passed away at home on 11/9/2013.


Thu Aug 18, 2011 8:50 am
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Joined: Fri Jan 15, 2010 9:33 pm
Posts: 3345
Location: Vermont
Post Re: Hired Caregiver's Guilt Trip
I think a hospice evaluation might be in order, too. What does the PCP physician think? If they recommend it, you might as well go for it. Declines can be extremely rapid, as I found out all too well, so if even if your LO doesn't pass muster for hospice now, they may soon. Good luck. It's hard. Lynn

_________________
Lynn, daughter of 89 year old dad dx with possiblity of LBD, CBD, PSP, FTD, ALS, Vascular Dementia, AD, etc., died Nov. 30, 2010 after living in ALF for 18 months.


Thu Aug 18, 2011 10:39 am
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Joined: Fri Aug 11, 2006 1:46 pm
Posts: 4811
Location: SF Bay Area (Northern CA)
Post Re: Hired Caregiver's Guilt Trip
Sandwich Mom,

Falls can be greatly reduced in number one of two ways: closely escorting your mother every where she walks (by using a gait belt with a person trained a bit on its use and how to make falls safe) or by having someone in a wheelchair fulltime. Is either an option? Probably the care facility will want you to hire an aide as well to prevent falls. They will not want your mother falling on their watch.

Robin


Thu Aug 18, 2011 11:42 am
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Joined: Sun Aug 29, 2010 5:46 pm
Posts: 610
Post Re: Hired Caregiver's Guilt Trip
When my mother was unsteady on her feet for a while several months ago (due to a medication issue, since resolved), they had her in a wheelchair (instead of using her walker). She sometimes forgot she was not supposed to get up by herself so they had a monitor thing (not sure of its technical name) clipped discreetly to the back of her clothing and an alarm would go off if she tried to get up. That was very helpful. She did not have any falls and the aides would walk her with her walker and the gait belt so she still got exercise. I would think that this kind of thing would be fairly common.

Julianne


Thu Aug 18, 2011 12:01 pm
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Joined: Wed Dec 30, 2009 1:46 pm
Posts: 3213
Location: WA
Post Re: Hired Caregiver's Guilt Trip
Julianne, Derek also has such a monitor on his w/c. His is a pressure type under the seat pad that alarms when pressure is released. The magnet type clipped to his back won't work for him because he is always slumped over forward in the chair and it would be set off all the time. Of course, it takes the cgs a few seconds to respond but I think it also serves as a reminder to the resident. The last time Derek fell at the SNF the monitor was not turned on.

_________________
Pat [68] married to Derek [84] for 38 years; husband dx PDD/LBD 2005, probably began 2002 or earlier; late stage and in a SNF as of January 2011. Hospitalized 11/2/2013 and discharged to home Hospice. Passed away at home on 11/9/2013.


Thu Aug 18, 2011 12:23 pm
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Joined: Sun Aug 29, 2010 5:46 pm
Posts: 610
Post Re: Hired Caregiver's Guilt Trip
Pat, it seems like that kind of device would really help cut down on falls, though of course nothing is perfect.

Julianne


Thu Aug 18, 2011 1:46 pm
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Joined: Tue Mar 29, 2011 3:02 pm
Posts: 386
Location: East TN
Post Re: Hired Caregiver's Guilt Trip
years ago I worked as an electronic tech at a state mental hospital…(if you have ever read Walker Percy….that hospital…yes…that very one)

one of my extra projects was to create those pressure pad alarms for the adolescent wards beds…. :lol:

it was a fun project….

these alarms should be real easy to set at home in beds, chairs….all kinds of meaningful applications…..and they should be relatively cheap to do….

might be a fun project to tackle again... :idea:

the result of the alarm could really be anything you wanted to happen in today's world….really limitless possiblities….

and….could be be a lifesaver….

_________________
Craig - Patient - Male - 56 years old - Lewy Bodies diagnosed on March 23, 2011 - cognitive disorder NOS dx 2007 - RBD REM dx 2007 issues for 20+ years - intention tremor 1974 - other issues many years


Thu Aug 18, 2011 2:14 pm
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Joined: Wed Mar 02, 2011 1:04 pm
Posts: 251
Post Re: Hired Caregiver's Guilt Trip
What a wonderful thing to do Craig!

_________________
First symptoms in 2000 at 35 yrs old. LBD early onset dx 2-17-2011 at age 46.

' "I try not to worry about the future, but rather to "wonder"....and "wonder" is one step away from "awe" '......From a wise friend........


Thu Aug 18, 2011 4:19 pm
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Joined: Tue Dec 29, 2009 2:28 pm
Posts: 464
Location: Minnesota
Post Re: Hired Caregiver's Guilt Trip
When Mom entered the dementia unit, they put her in her wheelchair and she's still in it. When she was home, we only used it when we went shopping or some such. The rational behind this is that the aides can't follow behind all of the residents. There was never a mention of hiring Mom's own private aide, nor have I seen any at the dementia unit.

You can buy pressure pads for beds, chairs, just about anything through most medical supply stores (or online). They're expensive, though. The alarm clipped to clothes is pretty common in nursing homes. It is based on the little pull that it gets when someone stands up and the clip jerks off of the clothing.

Craig, if you were making pressure pads from scratch back then, maybe you should be getting a royalty! :lol:

Kate

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Kate [i](Cared for Mom for years before anyone else noticed the symptoms, but the last year of her life was rough and we needed to place her in an SNF, where she passed in February 2012)[/i]


Fri Aug 19, 2011 1:17 pm
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Joined: Fri May 28, 2010 4:46 pm
Posts: 119
Location: Salem, Oregon
Post Re: Hired Caregiver's Guilt Trip
Mom has resisted the idea of a wheelchair, but we'll see what the memory care unit wants to do. She might not have a choice. We'd need to get one with an alarm because when she's awake, she tends to be restless and tries to get up a lot. We had a birthday party for my niece at her house last night because I have stairs, and my sister didn't want us at her place because she hadn't had time to clean it. It was frustrating because Mom kept trying to play hostess, understandably so, since it's her house. But that meant she kept getting up to do things that I could do myself in a fraction of the time. Instead, I followed her around, hanging on to her gait belt while she slowly passed out paper plates, then napkins, then went back and hid each napkin under the paper plates, then got forks (for our pizza), etc. I just wanted her to sit down so that I could get everything ready without worrying about her. She just ignored me when I tried to get her to sit down and let me do it. Then after dinner, we were all watching football in the living room. My dad was clearly enjoying himself and then the next thing I know, she's trying to get up again. This time she wanted a shower. I felt bad for dad because he needed to help her, so we all went home. In retrospect, I wish I would have offered to help her myself so that he could continue watching the game, but I didn't think of it since I've never showered her before. She's fallen several times getting into or out of the shower, so the idea kind of scares me. I'm not sure if she'd be comfortable letting me help her. The last time the caregiver tried to help her, she growled, "Get out of here." The caregiver obeyed, and, of course, she fell.


Fri Aug 19, 2011 4:53 pm
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Joined: Fri Aug 11, 2006 1:46 pm
Posts: 4811
Location: SF Bay Area (Northern CA)
Post Re: Hired Caregiver's Guilt Trip
I think it's good for your mother to play hostess, and you made her safe by accompanying her with the gait belt. That seems like the best approach.

There will be lots of adjustments for your family once your mother enters a facility. Good luck!


Fri Aug 19, 2011 5:09 pm
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Joined: Wed Mar 02, 2011 1:04 pm
Posts: 251
Post Re: Hired Caregiver's Guilt Trip
SandwichMom,

I don't know if it helps at all or not, but I've been told the sick and/or elderly often pick one person only that they allow to help them with things as personal as showers....My Grandmother would only let my mother help her....One time I tried to be helpful with her with the shower, but she refused and asked for my Mom....I didn't take it personally...So try not to feel bad - my intuition says that she might only let your Dad help her with that.....

Also what you did for her by letting her be hostess was very sweet....I'm sure it tried your patience and it was difficult too, but I think it was really sweet of you to do!

Best wishes,

Tonya

_________________
First symptoms in 2000 at 35 yrs old. LBD early onset dx 2-17-2011 at age 46.

' "I try not to worry about the future, but rather to "wonder"....and "wonder" is one step away from "awe" '......From a wise friend........


Fri Aug 19, 2011 5:55 pm
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Joined: Tue Dec 29, 2009 2:28 pm
Posts: 464
Location: Minnesota
Post Re: Hired Caregiver's Guilt Trip
Same here. When she was living at home, and though we lived together, Mom always insisted on my sister helping her in the shower. If she wanted a bath, she'd want me. But always my sister in the shower. My sister lives about 5 miles away, but was willing to do it. It was actually fun because Mom would take the sprayer and get my sister wet, too.

Kate

_________________
Kate [i](Cared for Mom for years before anyone else noticed the symptoms, but the last year of her life was rough and we needed to place her in an SNF, where she passed in February 2012)[/i]


Sun Aug 21, 2011 10:28 pm
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Joined: Fri May 28, 2010 4:46 pm
Posts: 119
Location: Salem, Oregon
Post Re: Hired Caregiver's Guilt Trip
We had our second meeting yesterday with the memory care facility where Mom will be moving to. This meeting was to evaluate the level of care she needs, and the conclusion is that she needs to be in the unit that provides maximum care (no surprise to me). She will be moving there into a private room Labor Day weekend if all goes as planned. Most of her falls are when she tries to get out of bed by herself. They said that they will deal with these falls by putting her box springs and mattress on the floor, having a cushioned mat next to her bed, and clipping something to her nightgown that triggers an alarm when she tries to get up. When the alarm goes off, they'll go help her do whatever it is she wants to do. They said if she wants to walk around in the middle of the night, even if it's outside in the enclosed yard, they'll just make sure someone is with her.

During the day, they'll try to keep her occupied and entertained in the activity area. The building is fairly small and designed so that they can see the residents in the common areas at all times. I asked if they will require her to be in a wheelchair with an alarm, and they said no. They said they won't restrain her but will give her as much freedom and dignity and as many choices as possible. They said she'll most likely continue to fall as long as she can walk, but there will always be someone close at hand. There are no set visiting hours. We can come see her whenever we want. We can also have meals with her for only $3 and use a separate dining room when we get together as a family. There are planned activities every day, weekly outings, and weekly live entertainment. We're pretty happy with everything we're hearing.

I finally found out why her caregiver told my dad not to put her at this facility. She's been in it and said it smelled like urine. When I was there, a sitting area we passed through did smell faintly like urine. One of the chairs was being cleaned, so clearly, there was a reason for the smell. I didn't notice it anywhere else. But good grief...there are about 15 residents in that unit, most of whom are probably incontinent. Isn't it going to smell like urine? Parts of my house smelled like urine for years while my boys were in diapers and even worse during potty training. I still catch the smell now and then since my 9-year-old's aim could use some improvement. I'm not concerned about it as long as I don't see days' old puddles on the floor or stains drying on the furniture without being cleaned and as long as my mom isn't sitting in wet Depends for hours on end.


Tue Aug 23, 2011 12:12 pm
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