When can my Mom not live alone anymore??

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She gets better and worse and better and.....If things keep changing...how do i know? My Mom has dementia and is going to be assessed by a Dr. , next Tues. I have been doing lots of research and if I am anywhere close she has like stage 5 Alzh but sometimes she seems way better....shes way confused and most of the time, doesnt know Im her daughter, although Im the only person she sees and i see her @ least every other day, she has no idea who pays her bills (i took that over months ago). Sometimes she seems like late stage 6....completely jumbled words, and just way out of it.. Today i spent 2 hours sitting w/ her and she doesnt make much sense, but seems to enjoy being at home, alone. I bet she is very lonely. She has hallucinations and thinks ppl and small children are with her, during the day. I know its going to be best for her, and hope Doc reccommends assis. living or skilled nursing as I know this will progress, but she keeps speaking of moving to small cottage or lil house and how do i tell her where shes really moving?? will she know??? HELP

Answers 1 to 10 of 18
hi patricia1 you came to the right place!
Top Answer
Putting an exact label on the stage is not the important thing. If she is confused most of the time, doesn't recognize you, hallucinates, and can't express herself coherently I think she is not safe to be alone, with only every-other-day visits. At the very least she needs daily in-home care.

Can she get her own meals? Does she remember to? How about toileting? Bathing? Any problems with swallowing? Is she steady on her feet? Can she dial a phone? Does she have a medical alert button? Would she remember to use it in an emergency? Think about these and other activities of daily living, and bring a list with you to the doctor appointment.

Fluctuations in cognitive levels can be very frustrating for caregivers, but I think you have to gear her care for her worst times.

I hope the doctor can provide some answers.
Your concerns are familiar to many of us here. You have the first steps in order bills/money issues and then health concerns, proper diagnosis.
thank you for your answer ,but she clearly cant live alone in her apt. Not at all steady on her feet, calls and leaves rambling messages about why Patty hasnt come home from school, im Patty, Im 52. The reason for the Dr. doing the assessment is so I can get her in a place, where shell be safe and comfortable. Question: how do i tell her she is going to "one of those places"??
I was short with my posts because I was hoping you were still here and didn't want to lose you because I have long answers.
I't is best in most case to not think of it as an ask or tell situation you really need to do what is best for her, From your post it sounds like what you tell her is not going to really matter she either will not remember or if you do tell her it might bring on a stressful reaction for both of you. If you want to gently tell her make it sound like she's getting the royal treatment she'll have it easier. She may not seem like she's going to understand but believe me emotions penetrate thru dementia.
i guess another question i have is i think it will be sad if i say you have to move because you cant do this, this and this, anymore...so do i just tell her Im worried about her and want to help her ??
Patricia1 ...I have more time now for a full answer. You really need to get her diagnosed, then stableized with meds, routine, diet, exersize (not a workout just mild movement or walks) , the behavior you mentioned and what she is seeing, is quite common with dementia. Has she been taking any medication? If so who is making sure she's taking them properly? The point I am getting at is it is better to have her behavior stabilized before she is moved anywhere and it will be easier for her to adjust. It takes a while if all those things are in order before you'll see any change. You see she is already confused and in and out of reality moving her will be stressful, change causes stress and depression and this adds more confusion.
If it is possible try to do this first. It is usually pointless to talk on a reality level with anyone with dementia, if they do understand during the conversation they with either forget a few moments later or obsess and stress about it, or get angry at you but forget why. You really can never tell what reaction your going to get, stable or not. That is why I suggested earlier in a post just do what's best for her, it's 1 in a million your going to get the reaction you want. I call it "need to know basis" I tell Mom what she needs to know. If it's any relief my Mom adjusted well and thinks she's having parties every day and she's at work. Except when I come it's ice cream break time!!!
P.S. there are better times of the day to have conversations with my Mom it's 2:30 pm - 3:30 pm Keep us posted and remember it's the best thing for her and you.
I wouldn't tell her she is going to "one of those places." I would tell her she is going to Sunny Hills Residential Care (the name of the specific place), and emphasize how awesome this is going to be. Mention some of the specifics there she will like. If her memory is such that she forgets this quickly I think I wouldn't keep telling her over and over. Just make the arrangements and move her. I think you are right not to dwell on her own impairments. After working so hard all these years she deserves to have people available to wait on her, to help her take her meds, to visit with. She deserves to be able to socialize when she wants to and sit quietly when she wants to. After all the countless meals she's made in her life, won't it be nice to have someone else to make all meals, do all the grocery shopping, and do all the dishes? Make it about what she is entitled to and what she deserves, rather than about what she can't do any more.

If possible, the doctor should break the news to her that she should not live alone anymore. Give him or her a note before your mother goes in, listing your specific observations, and asking for a statement that she cannot live alone, if the doctor agrees with that assessment.
jeannegibbs just triggered a thought.... when she said have the doctor tell her. My mother always will do anything and is very agreeable when a good looking man suggests anything. If there is someone she has an affection towards it may be easier if he is with you upon first arrival at the new residency.

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