Suggestions for Helping Dad - Dementia Decline

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So, after the wallet mishap, it's clear that Dad's condition has taken a turn. Each time I visit now, things are in strange places and Dad just seems...lost. I want to attribute it to the recent move, but it just seems like he took a nosedive overnight. It doesn't help that I keep beating myself up for moving him. He was doing MUCH better at the other place.

Anyway, I guess I was just ignorant about the dangers of dementia. At his last place, I kept a few cleaning supplies in a cabinet he never went in. I took those out yesterday.

I'm thinking I may need to do his laundry and put away his clothes because he had things in...odd places. Clothing in the shower... towels in his "snack" cabinet... it was strange. Maybe if I do the laundry and put his things away, he won't be so confused (I only live five minutes away).

I was also thinking about making some signs with really large print and labeling where things go, but I'm not sure. Sometimes Dad gets upset if he feels like he's being treated like a child. I REALLY don't want to tick him off. I dunno what to do. I wasn't prepared for this change.

...and before you ask... I can't afford MC or a full NH. Dad doesn't qualify for Medicaid. The VA facility was just in the news yesterday for some scary allegations, and I also can't afford the $975 fee this new ALF will charge to assist with Activities of Daily Living.

They will wash the clothes and bring them back, but the resident is in charge of putting their own things away. I don't think Dad has the capacity to understand that anymore.

I think that's where some of my anxiety is coming from (not to mention being federally investigated earlier in the week). This person is NOT my Dad. He's some old man that looks like Dad and can't even understand the basics anymore. I don't want to see him in this state, and who knows how long it will last?

I'm not necessarily wishing death...just peace for everyone. I just wish things were different. I HATE THIS DISEASE!!!!!

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Tiny Blu, my heart aches for you. I went through this with my mother and in-laws and most of us here have gone through it with a loved one as well. I’m not sure who it’s more difficult for, those of us who witness this disease robbing us of our loved one or our loved ones themselves. This is a situation where you must pick your battles. Is it really life-threatening if Dad puts his socks in the refrigerator? But it might be dangerous to leave knives, bleach, scissors and things like that in his space. Mom would hide her wallet because she thought a man in her apartment complex was stalking her and then even call the police when she couldn’t find it.

If Dad is safe, fed and being looked after where he is, do you think you should step back? Can you trust the facility to care for him adequately? While he journeys through this disease, you will unfortunately find more and more things to agonize over. Lots of members here recommend Teepa Snow videos on YouTube to educate yourself about this disease. Give them a try, they might help. Sending you hugs...
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Tiny, I've had some experience with that as well, and, perhaps more frightening, have gone through it myself when I've been overstressed. Things that are right in front of me can't be recognized b/c I'm not calm enough to connect what I'm looking for with what I'm seeing.

As I recall some of your posts, you've been concerned for your father for months, and tried to do the best you could. And that's all anyone can do.

As to the signs, FF is right. It would require that the words be connected to the objects, and it sounds like that isn't possible at this stage.

When I took the Creating Confident Caregivers class, one of the sessions included a video of women during their journeys through dementia. At first they were able to make simple sandwiches - pick up 2 slices of bread, take a slice of lunch meat out of the package, add mayo or mustard, put the meat in and cut the sandwich in half.

By the fourth time this was tried (several months later), some were unable to determine what either the silverware or the food was for. They could only look at the objects, turn them over, look again, but were unable to recognize what they were.

I'm writing this not to frighten you, but to prepare you, as you're already stressed. If you know what's coming, hopefully it won't be as traumatic as it might otherwise be.

Despite my best efforts, things still disappeared. That's why I made copies of important cards such as the medical ones, VA and SS cards. I never knew when my father's wallet would take an impromptu vacation and refuse to return.

Since you're so close, I think I would use the chance to put things away as part of your visits. You might talk to the aides and see if they'll put all the clothes someplace where your father can't reach them, then you can store them during your visits.

I don't know that there's really a solution for this, and as I wrote, I struggle with it myself when I'm really stressed. It's only after I listen to music, read, and calm down that I can find what I'm seeking.

But as I recall, there were legitimate reasons for moving, so remember those. It may be that your father might have reached this stage whether he moved or not. Don't blame yourself. In these situations, it's often a case of doing the best thing for the better reasons.
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Tinyblu, take a deep breath. Let Dad put away his clothes even if the clothes are going in the wrong place. My Dad use to take clothes out of the hamper to wear. The world isn't going to stop or explode if this happens.

As for putting up signs. Nope, signs won't work. We tried that with my Dad to remind him to take his meds when he was living in Independent Living. Had signs everywhere, would rotate the signs so that they would look new. Dad had to sign up for the optional medical-tech who would take charge of his pills.
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So, after the wallet mishap, it's clear that Dad's condition has taken a turn. Each time I visit now, things are in strange places and Dad just seems...lost. I want to attribute it to the recent move, but it just seems like he took a nosedive overnight. It doesn't help that I keep beating myself up for moving him. He was doing MUCH better at the other place.

Anyway, I guess I was just ignorant about the dangers of dementia. At his last place, I kept a few cleaning supplies in a cabinet he never went in. I took those out yesterday.

I'm thinking I may need to do his laundry and put away his clothes because he had things in...odd places. Clothing in the shower... towels in his "snack" cabinet... it was strange. Maybe if I do the laundry and put his things away, he won't be so confused (I only live five minutes away).

I was also thinking about making some signs with really large print and labeling where things go, but I'm not sure. Sometimes Dad gets upset if he feels like he's being treated like a child. I REALLY don't want to tick him off. I dunno what to do. I wasn't prepared for this change.

...and before you ask... I can't afford MC or a full NH. Dad doesn't qualify for Medicaid. The VA facility was just in the news yesterday for some scary allegations, and I also can't afford the $975 fee this new ALF will charge to assist with Activities of Daily Living.

They will wash the clothes and bring them back, but the resident is in charge of putting their own things away. I don't think Dad has the capacity to understand that anymore.

I think that's where some of my anxiety is coming from (not to mention being federally investigated earlier in the week). This person is NOT my Dad. He's some old man that looks like Dad and can't even understand the basics anymore. I don't want to see him in this state, and who knows how long it will last?

I'm not necessarily wishing death...just peace for everyone. I just wish things were different. I HATE THIS DISEASE!!!!!
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Tinyblu, there is nothing under “see below”. Can you please repost? There is a large white box under the post/title box where you can expand on your question.
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