What can I do if I just realized that my mom needs more care than I can give her?


My mom has CHF, COPD, Afib, Pulmonary hypertension, and dementia- I have been caring for her alone for over 4 yrs since she broke her hip.
I have always lived with my mom. Back in the day we had separate lives, and slowly I helped her with little things. The slow role reversal took place without either of us noticing or caring.
When she broke her hip, it was life altering. We got through it, and she got stronger at home, but the care grew, as did the dementia. She has been in the hospital annually, but I have always been able to bring her home and care for her.
This year she has been in the hospital 3 times with pneumonia. The last bout her kidneys tanked but after dialysis came back and she is currently in rehab. Her PT stopped today; I feel she is not strong enough to care for her myself yet, so I will just continue PT myself in the Rehab
My problem is I am so stressed out my BP is sky high, my head feel tight and I fear for myself. I have major burnout, but I am feeling like I am failing mom. I don’t want to get mom home and not be able to care for her, nor do I want her in a nursing home if at all possible to care for her. I just feel like I am failing her. I don’t know what to do, and feel so stressed, and worried for my own health

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I agree with Shamrock, I took care of my grandmother for two years untill she passed 10 months ago. We put her on hospice in April of 09 and she was on it untill she passed. They were wonderful, they paid for everything. medical supplies, medicinces that are diagnosis related. Respite care for 5 days a year to give you rest. Her in Florida if she needed extra additional nursing round the clock we have what is called a hospice house that are just wonderful. I would seriously look into that, and you can call on them day and night and if you need some one at 2-3 in the morning they will even send someone out to your house. I hope this helps
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I don't know your mom's age but if she is on medicare than I would first contact or have her doctor get an in home Hospice service on board. It should be fully covered under medicare and they were wonderful with my mom over the past two months. I too took care of mom by myself for two years before she passed away (at home in her own bed) two weeks ago. Just knowing you have someone on call 24/7 can give you the strength to continue your path. Nursing, bathing, chaplain and social worker were the best option for continuing moms journey thru Alzheimers and Dementia until she passed. God bless you for wanting to do this for your mom..I truly understand.
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I had the same thought as naheaton, and it stems from my own recent experience. There is a huge part of me that still believes that "caring for" my Dad means he will get better, not worse.

But either way -- there is surely a social worker in the rehab place. Part of their job is to help caregivers give the appropriate care. And though it may feel like you are "failing" your Mom to not be able to care for her at home, I be you would see it differently if you imagined falling with your Mom, and both being hurt; being so stressed you lost your job; ending up in the hospital yourself and not having back up at home. Not to scare you, but all (and more) are possibilities. If the lifeboat is leaking (and you are clear that it is), the passenger (your Mom) isn't as safe and dry as it seems. Get help. And know that GETTING that help actually helps your Mom.
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Brandy, It occurred to me when I was reading your post, that maybe your stress level has gone up so much because, you're afraid this might be the end. If your mom's health problems are finally catching up to her and she's not able to rebound anymore, then maybe that's what you're really worried about. That mom is going to die under your care, even though that's probably what you wanted. Does that make sense? Well it did when I first started typing. On one hand you want to take care of your mom till she dies, but on the other hand now it's looking like she's winding down and death seems closer then it used to. Anyway, just a thought. Either way it may be time to bring in reinforcements for her care if at all possible. If you have a church home I'd start there and ask around for help. Sorry about mom.
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Hi Brandywine, some quick thoughts. I realize that financial resources are often a determining factor in obtaining additional care. Without that knowledge, some of these thoughts may not be possible. GET HELP. You may opt for an aide to be with your Mom for certain hours of the day or evenings. You may get a live-in aide (often less expensive than getting hourly help). You might look into respite care or adult day care certain days of the week. This would give you some alone time.
Assisted living allows more of a home like experience that a skilled nursing facility.

Review health insurance coverage. After the 20 days with full medicare coverage, my Mom stayed in rehab another 4 weeks. Her group insurance paid for everything medicare didn't cover. (This depends on the plan so check it out). Ask about the discontinuance of PT. Some therapists don't know how to work with patients that are confused and when they see no progress they recommend that it be stopped. This happened with my Mom, I moved her to an assisted living place and their therapists were able to help my Mom a lot more than the rehab place. Hope this helps. I've been there with all the same issues except the dialysis.
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