How do I get my mother with Alzheimer's to wear season appropriate clothing?

Follow
Share

She insists on wearing long johns in summer.

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.
33

Answers

Show:
"She insists on wearing long johns in summer" And this is a problem because ...? The kind of inappropriate clothing problem elders may need some gentle guidance with is wanting to wear a swim suit to a funeral. Wearing long johns to be comfortable is not in that realm of needing help.

(BTW, my daughter-in-law wore long johns under her wedding dress, in May.Some people are just cold. DIL is very warm-hearted, though.)

Shortly after we started at the Mayo Clinic for dementia treatment, I was doing an interview over the phone. There were a whole series of questions like "Can your husband use public transportation alone? Can he safely use the stove? Can he use the microwave? etc. etc. and I was whipping right through the questions with Yes or no answers, until the interviewer came to "Does he dress appropriately?" Complete silence for a minute. Finally I said, "Um ... he's an engineer." She laughed. "Let me rephrase that. -- Does he dress as appropriately now as he ever has?" (Engineers are pocket-protector kinds of folks, not generally regarded as being at the forefront of fashion or even appropriateness.)

There are many, many large issues in old age. My advice to caregivers is don't sweat the small stuff.
Helpful Answer (8)
Report

I am a nurse and have dealt with this issue for the past 8 years with the seniors. They are always cold due to circulation problems, blood thinners, and immobility. I strongly encourage to wear warmer clothing so they will utilize air conditioning. Hot rooms/homes cause more problems for those with breathing problems as asthma and emphysema. Heart conditions and pulmonary as well. As long as they are not having ill effects from "over dressing"-- it's not worth the battle. Hope you found this helpful.
Helpful Answer (7)
Report

Choose your battles wisely. Focus on correcting the behavior that is dangerous, there's enough of that type to worry about! No harm, no foul in wearing off season clothes in my opinion. Just be sure they're clean. Lighter long johns are made, try giving her a set of those for summer. My Dad was always freezing and wore 3 pairs of slacks and 3 or 4 shirts. Never broke a sweat even in August in Atlanta.
Helpful Answer (6)
Report

My MIL likes to wear a black jacket over everything, summer or winter in Atlanta. I just let her. If she's comfortable, that's all I care about--but it has to be clean. I found about 5 of these jackets from size 4 to 12 and they all smelled terrible. I weeded out the ones that were too small and got the others cleaned. I really have to watch her, though, she overheats a lot and doesn't know enough to shed her jacket. She's more concerned with how she looks, even though she dresses completely inappropriately most of the time--wearing clothes that are 3-4 sizes too small, just squeezes into them. I've been working on weeding those out and getting her things that fit her and are appropriate for her age and where she normally goes when she goes out. The black jacket is like the long underwear, whatever makes them feel comfortable! It's hard to allow them to wear these things when WE are dying of heat exhaustion!!
Helpful Answer (6)
Report

My dad is currently wearing his thick flannel pajama bottoms that have snowmen on them and a fleece top. It is 90 degrees outside. He is perfectly comfortable. And I figure--what the heck. He many years wearing clothes that were appropriate for work etc. If he want to wear his flannel jambo bottoms it is not hurting anyone :-)
Helpful Answer (6)
Report

My mother had an old brown sweater that was just so ugly...you would not believe.
She loved it and would miss it even if it was just a matter of trying to wash it...she would be looking for it and tear everything out of her dresser drawers. When I would present it to her all nice and clean...she would act as though I had just given her the greatest gift ever. And sometimes she would layer up...wearing two or three layers of clothing and I live in Florida. The doctor asked me why I did not just let her wear what ever she wanted...especially around the house. I decided to try that and it all worked out....and there were many humerous situations...as for her wardrobe... she made not exceptions for guests. Good luck..I think .it will all work itself out. And I love Sarahjean's suggestions. Hugs..
Helpful Answer (5)
Report

I am 62 and still get hot flashes; when not flashing i'm plain hot. I will be the one in the NH in shorts and a tank top.
Helpful Answer (5)
Report

I agree with just letting her wear it. My mother-in-law does the same thing. If we are going to the doctor or something I will remove "inappropriate" clothing a day or so ahead of time so when she gets dressed her choices are limited but I always take her sweater in case she does get chilly. Also, since she lives with us I close the vent in her room during the summer and open it back up in the winter. I also keep a small electric heater in the bathrrom year round so I can warm it up for her before every bath but I always unplug it and put it away after it is heated before she comes in. Good luck
Helpful Answer (4)
Report

My 88 y/o father (who doesn't have Alzheimer's) gets cold easily and wears a jacket inside most of the time unless it is very warm and muggy. It may be that your mother actually feels cold, even in June so she may simply be wearing what feels good to her even if it would inappropriate for most other people.
Helpful Answer (4)
Report

I can remember my dad wearing flannel shirts and a jacket even in 95 degree weather because he was thin as a rail, had bad circulation, and was always cold. It could be that she really is cold. Her thyroid could be low or she could be anemic, too. As long as she is well hydrated and not going into heat exhaustion, I would not worry about it.
Helpful Answer (4)
Report

See All Answers
This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.
Related
Questions