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At 3 am, he gets up and opens the bedroom closet thinking it’s the toilet. It happens about every month. I have to drag him away from the closet and push him to the toilet down the hall - only about 30 feet. Besides barricading the closet, any suggestions? Thanks!

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Geeeez, that’s tough. Are you his primary caregiver? You must be exhausted. Is it possible to hire someone for the overnight hours? Do you think it may be time for him to live in a facility?

I guess you could try to somehow barricade the door or place a lock on it.

So sorry that you are struggling with this situation.

Others with experience with this may be able to offer more help. Best wishes to you and your dad.

What about a bedside commode? They aren’t expensive. They sell them on Amazon. You may even want to place it in the closet since that is where he wants to go.
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Reply to NeedHelpWithMom
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It is easy to put a hook and eye lock on the door.
(place it high so he does not see it easily)
A bedside commode or a urinal might be an easy solution.
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Reply to Grandma1954
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Lock the closet. If mobility is an issue then get a urinal to keep beside his bed, my dad does this as he can’t walk well. If he walks well and forgetting the location maybe the bathroom light being left would help. But with dementia there a connection missing so this may lead to Depends
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Reply to Daughterof1930
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I read your question to my husband and he recommends you put some urinal cakes in there.

;-)

I know it's not a funny situation to you but his "answer" made me giggle. Need to start 2020 out with a giggle. Wishing you a fresh start in the New Year!
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Reply to Geaton777
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Have his meds adjusted is one suggestion.

Thirty feet is too far, get him closer to the bathroom if you want him to use it.
Put a commode next to his bed.

Set an alarm for you at 2:55 a.m. if he is up every night at about 3 a.m.
Well, I guess you were already up at that time if you pushed him 30 feet to the bathroom?

Be very grateful that at age 89 he can still walk 30 feet.

What was your question again? Lol and Happy New Year!
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Reply to Sendhelp
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Put a small combination lock on the closet. Consider moving your father nearer to the toilet or get a commode for the room.

A friend's 19 and 22 year old sons sometimes mistake the closet or wardrobe for the toilet when drunk so it isn't just a problem for then elderly! She gets them to pay a hefty clean up fee which has helped but a small lock on the wardrobe and a commode is the best bet for an 89 year old.
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Reply to Elle1970
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People with dementia or often even just memory loss rely on being able to _see_ what they need instead of remembering where it is. So 30 feet away might as well be the end of the world. I suggest placing a bedside commode in the bedroom, maybe even in the closet as NeedHelpWithMom suggested.

You might want to consider moving to clear storage containers for daily use items and visible snacks sitting on kitchen counters or the dining tables too.
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Reply to TNtechie
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Bob, does your Dad turn on the lights when he is going to the closet? If not, I would try placing an automatic light that goes on when the closet door opens. It could be that maybe your Dad is remembering another place where he had lived where the bathroom was right off the bedroom.

What about night lights to help guide Dad down the hall t the bathroom, and a night light in the bathroom.

My concern that locking the closet door would cause Dad to beat on the door and pull on the door handle breaking it. Another idea is to put some bells on the door handle as Dad probably isn't fully awake at 3 a.m. Horse carriage bells will surely wake him up.
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Reply to freqflyer
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In my opinion, if you secure the closet door where he cannot open it, he will pee on the bedroom floor unless you are there to push him down the hall. He will still not remember or be able to see the toilet 30 feet down the hall. Adding a bedside commode to the bedroom might work or he might not relate the commode to the toilet he is looking for... unless it's in the closet he already thinks in a bathroom. Your are looking at a dementia behavior so your options are going to be limited to what his broken brain can still adjust/change behaviors. He may adjust to using a urinal or he may not. I encourage you to find a solution that works with your father as soon as you can while you have a chance to establish a new habit. In a few weeks or months, he may go looking for the toilet in the closet much more often and/or not just at night.
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Reply to TNtechie
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