Dementia and the ER... This is a rant
Warning.. this is a rant as I am fearing another ER visit coming up with my Dad who now has a respiratory infection at the memory care. As their caregiver.. ER visits are one of the worst aspects and the most dreaded. (especially now in flu season) Since my parents moved closer to me (4 years ago), I have had numerous horrific, exhausting ER experiences. My dad has been in the ER at an average of 2 times a year in the last 3 years.. all for unrelated issues... for breaking his knee cap, for a kidney infection, for pneumonia , for broken ribs, for an infected gall bladder ... My mom has been in the ER twice since they moved 4 years ago. Once for a TIA and once for a broken wrist. That's at least 8 ER visits with them. The ones with my mom I had to bring my Dad along as I didn't have caregivers at the time. The ones with my dad... I had to bring my mom. They both require 24/7 care while in the ER or hospital. Each visit I get numerous questions from them (over and over and over), long wait which usually end in them admitting them. With my dad.. he will not use the urinal they provide.. so each visit ultimately ends with him having some kind of bathroom accident. I usually see things that no daughter should see. Each visit I get texts from relatives...who want to care from afar... all with concerns for the parent (never me) ... all who want to be "kept informed" ... which means they want to know medical details about my dad. Sometimes I include non medical details like when he pulls out his IV or when he has accidents in the ER... when no one is around (except me)... just for their enjoyment. My parents have each recovered from each ER visit... but each time it takes something out of me... it puts me in such high stress and really highlights what it is like to be alone with someone with dementia. Ok rant over. I pray things turn around this time ...at least he has a D.r at the memory care who has already prescribed antibiotics... but he did have pneumonia just last year.. Every time I hear of any kind of illness with them I start getting high anxiety of my most feared dementia experience.