I need clothing help. Mom says she has no clothes. She has many, many clothes. How do I deal with this?

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The other day I went to Mom's (independent care, mild Dementia, Narcissistic) and she opened her closet (packed with clothes) and said I have nothing to wear. She finds fault with each article of clothing. She wants me to "drop her off" at the mall which I refuse to do. NOT SAFE. She buys beautiful tops and over and over says "I have nothing to wear. That top is not "me" anymore." So far, I just listen to her. I try to pick out 2 or 3 outfits for her before I leave. (I visit twice a week - she's well cared for - bather, nurse's aide, etc.) I just don't know what the right thing to do in this situation. I will call her doctor, however also wanted to know if anyone had ever heard of this before. Another factor, which could very well be at play, is she's had bladder infection after bladder infection this year. So it could be this behavior is temporarily appearing because of the bladder problem. The doctor just put her on another medication for the bladder problem because on Friday her culture came back positive again. Poor Mom. I want to help her however I don't think it's proper to just endlessly buy clothes because she says she has "nothing to wear". I also wondered if this was a social anxiety issue. Having nothing to wear means you can't participate in social activities. Thank you so much for your comments. I am new to this site and appreciate your advice.

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AS mentioned UTIs are very common in the elderly and sometimes physions will prescribe antibiotics on a regular basis rather than in response to infections. maybe something like 2 weeks on 2 weeks off. This seems like an over use of the meds but if Mom is getting infections at least once a month it may be worth trying.
As far as the clothes are concerned that seems to have been answered except in the case of someone wearing the same clothes, my advise would be to match up the favorite clothes then keep swapping them out for laundry. Buy them used if possible but if new wash well before introducing them so they don;t appear different
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Emma, did you see the 12-26 5:03 am newsletter. I know it was titled Reactive Arthritis; but it mentioned the effects of bladder infections (among other infections) as having an effect of dementia. I was hoopin' and hollering as that's exactly what happened to my mom. She already had dementia, but dementia got so advanced we quickly moved her to an assisted living. The onset was so fast. She is back to "her normal" now that the infection was found and cleared. Who would have thought there was a connection. But I'm now convinced it was.
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Delena, it is not uncommon for elderly women to have chronic Urinary Tract Infections. The cause can be from any number of things such as not enough fluid intake, poor hygiene, prolapsed bladder, or just from being female and not producing estrogen any more (causes dryness of skin which causes tiny skin cracks for bacteria to grow in). The UTI's cause symptoms unique to the elderly such as worsened short term memory, easily frustrated, personality change (becoming belligerent or short tempered, swearing), and confusion. You are right, she should check out the bladder infection right away and get it cleared up. Improvement in Mom's demeanor should follow. I have been dealing with my 93 year old Mom's chronic UTI's for 2 years and still don't know why she gets so many. But then, she lives alone and we don't know all her habits for sure.
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My mother did the same thing. I would feel guilty and go out and buy her new clothes but then she didn't even wear them and was still saying that she had nothing to wear. I eventually just started telling her that next time I come by we will go shopping and that stopped her complaining. She wouldn't remember the conversation so it worked out okay.
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My mom in law has dementis and says this same thing. She has more clothes than anyone I know of. So, I bring some home with me, and exchange them out occasionally...and she seems happy at that (I try and do this when she is not in the room (remove ) and bring them in when she is there. She then thinks she is getting new clothes all the time.
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My mom does the same thing. It usually passes but sometimes we have to allow her wishes and then she moves on to something else. My sister took my mom shopping for clothes and she ended up giveing me the clothes. Kinda weird. I think they just don't have anything else. Mom has pleanty of clothes and she wears the same things over and over kinda funny. Mom does the same thing with food because my sister does the food shopping and mom want's to do it her self but it's an all day trip due to her illness and wheelchair but we take her sometimes to get it out of her system I guess you would say. Hang in there and do the best you can. Try some of the tricks others have said about taking clothes home and bringing back but I have a feeling your mom might just want to go out and have her own time. It's too much for me to do since I do the daily/night live in but my sister will take her for her all day shoping trips. It really helps but things change so often as we all know. Good luck : )
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Emma - my mom luckily fixates on other things (THEY steal shoes....) but one thing I'd like to suggest is to go ahead and take 1/2 of all her clothes now (both summer & winter weight), wash and pack them away for the future. Ignore her protests on this. lol

My mom went from her home of 50+ years to IL for a couple of years and now is in NH. I left about 60% of her wardrobe in her house when she moved into IL because I flat ran out of time to shove crap into boxes or drawers when the movers came.....But this had ended up being most fortunate as now that she is in a NH her once lovely wardrobe has been trashed. NH laundry is super hot and they all use big commercial systems which is rough beyond rough on anything that is not a good heavy duty fabric. So I;ve been able to just toss stuff as it gets too worn to wear and replace it from the stuff from storage. This is good as she recognizes items and knows it's hers. Oh and I should have used some of her spend down $ on inexpensive simple unfussy wardrobe as stuff just walks in the NH. My mom just loves those hideous SAS shoes and they have to get replaced pretty often as 1 is always MIA.
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Also as to the UTIs she may not be drinking enough water or un-decaffeinated fluids. My family was advised that severe UTIs can lead to strokes. My mother had a bad stroke and we found out she had a couple dozen mini strokes. My mother was not aware she had any symptomes of a UTI, but she had a sever UTI. Check on her fluid intake and that she is getting cleaned up propery daily when she is in the batheroom. Not sure if she has to have bathroom assitance if not she may need it now. Also that she is bathed on a regular basis. Just because they are helping her get in and out of the bath/shower she may need help cleaning herself.

I know it can be tough to keep up with you and your mom. I have been taking care of my mom for going on six years at my home. She goes to day care every day while I work. My mom needs assitance in every manner. I make her drinks and send them to day care so I know how much she is drinking and that a good portion of her fluid intake is water. No more UTIs. I also started with cranberry pills for an extra measure against the UTIs. Good luck and god bless!
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Meant to say "I need new clothes". I really should drink the coffee first BEFORE I write anything!
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My mom does this to an extent. She keeps saying "I need no clothes" while she has a closet full of things that she rarely wears. Part of it is due to PD and the fact that her clothes don't 'work' for her anymore. Buttons are hard. And zip up button pants are out of the question since she needs me to help her pull her pants up and down both for dressing and toileting. For my mom it comes from remembering a time when clothes were fun and not just something functional. Plus mom's become so emaciated due to cachexia from the advanced PD that a lot of tops and blouses just don't look right on her anymore but she still has to wear clothes. One day she had me look for pants that she hasn't had in yrs and insisted that I must have thrown them out. That was a fun day!
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