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Complete disregard of the fact that the oxygen is keeping her alive. . .


Takes O2 off whenever she wants to.


When she gets out of bed to go to the bathroom, she "forgets" to put the oxygen back on.


I used to use a "chime" to alert me of her "ups & downs" so I could put her oxygen back on. The only result was no sleep for me! I quit that. The "true" solution, in my opinion is two nurse/caregivers; -- one for daytime and one for night. Am I right or wrong on this???

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Nearer the end, my FIL kept removing his nasal O2. SIL had spent exhausting days & nights replacing it. My DH offered to relieve her.

The Hospice Nurse gently advised to replace, but if removed again, to let it go.

He did as SIL requested - kept replacing it every time. Didn't sleep. Felt the weight of responsibility for keeping him going.

DH said if he had a re-do he would listen to the Hospice Nurse. The goal at that stage was to keep him comfortable. So saying good night & letting them both sleep peacefully would have fit the goal better.

It may be confronting, but can I ask what are the goals for your Mother?
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Firstly you sound angry. It is very demanding to take care of an elderly and infirm patient However, you need to take care of yourself first. Deep sleep is critical for all of us. If you are doing night shift, consider changing it to days. Humans are diurnal (day living) not nocturnal. It may be slightly less in salary. However, it will most definitely improve your health and well being. Being a caretaker is very demanding under ideal conditions, when ones health and well being is compromised, it is impossible for long
Your health is your foundation.

As to oxygen patients...The lady is removing the o2 as its very uncomfortable for her. Merely replacing it is understandable
However the reason she is removing it is because
a. it is very uncomfortable for her
b. she is experiencing side effects from the equipment & the oxygen

The following will make it more comfortable for her
1. hydration. Ensure she is having at least 6 or 7 8oz glasses of distilled water daily. Moist lung tissue is more able to take up and utilize oxygen

.2. HUMIDITY. Oxygen supplement is very drying to the mucus membranes of nose, mouth, and the complete respiratory system.
Very distressing, as you can imagine if you think back to when you once experienced a dry mouth temporarily in a dentists chair
Get a home Humidifier. Especially if you live in a climate with low humidity, a humidifier will really help her feel much more comfortable every day.
And especially when using supplemental O2.
For most people, a humidity level around 40% is considered ideal for breathing and comfort
Undoubtedly some of the medications she is taking are exacerbating the problem of dried mucus membranes. Poor lady

.3. LUBRICATION. Apply a think smear of water based lubricant to the ends of the prongs. You can also use a little chamomile tea in a nasal spray & spray daily to keep the patients nasal passages moist enough for comfort.
The chamomile is also an anti inflammatory & soothing. This will ease the irritation in the nasal passages from the prongs & O2 passing through
Saline does in itself not have these medicinal properties

.4. COMFORT Adding some padding & strap covers will make the mask much more comfortable to wear. Just remember to remove & clean padding or covers used daily on a regular basis

.5. CHECK THE NUMBERS: If blood oxygen level is above 94% while a patient is awake, they probably don't need O2 therapy during the day.
If the O2 level i below 94% during the day , they may need O2 for a while during the day, as well as while sleeping at night.
Breathing 100% oxygen for long periods of time causes changes in the lungs. This harms the body, and has many serious side effects.
Concentrations of 40% oxygen can be given for longer periods of time with the risk of so many potentially lethal side effects
The side effects of too much oxygen are: headache, sleepiness and confusion.
The dementia the patient has been assumed to suffer is in all likelihood associated with the long term use of supplemental O2

TUMERIC POWDER
Tumeric powder (1tspn or 3 capsules before meals..only tumeric, no added pepper ) has shown in many medical studies to be beneficial to those who suffer with arthritis, cancer, asthma, dementia.
Researchers also found that the organic tumeric powder supplement reduces airway obstruction. And is a very helpful addition in the treatment of COAD (chronic obstructive airways disease)
Your patient was put on oxygen because she suffers COAD

I hope the above knowledge will be of help to yourself and your patient
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Imho, as she is in need of the 02 and you need your sleep, you may have to hire out a night nurse. Prayers sent.
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Does she have dementia or some other ailment? I’d consider that and her condition. Is the goal to prolong her life or keep her as comfortable as possible? What are her wishes? I’d explore to see if she is a candidate for hospice, as others have mentioned.
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2 options: 1 expensive and 1 cheap.

Expensive option is to hire a sitter for at night to "help" mom to the bathroom and to keep her oxygen on.

Cheap option is to decide that mom's comfort is paramount and not worry about the oxygen at night. Yes, she will not be as well oxygenated and that will probably shorten her life, but no sleep for you is shortening yours.
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People with dementia are sometimes like children and they just don't understand why something is necessary. And with the loss of memory, she may not remember what you recently told her. I found that my mother with dementia could not learn anything new. The suggestions below sound good. Things may get worse. My mother now "forgot" how to walk and feed herself. She needs help with everything.
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My guess is that if your Mom is able to get up to go to the bathroom on her own, the oxygen is not keeping her alive, but keeping her oxygen at an acceptable level. Not to sound harsh, but I would try to sleep as best you can and put the oxygen back on when you arise.
I really don't have any suggestions to help her keep it on, other than reminding her to put it on and explaining why.
Best wishes to you and your Mom.
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This is going to sound awful but if the oxygen is keeping her alive and she won't wear it, have you had her evaluated for hospice care? The oxygen is probably not really keeping her alive. You can monitor that with a small fingertip pulse oxygen monitor if it makes you feel better. You are driving yourself crazy with trying to keep this on her when the outcome for her will be inevitable. If she has the money to pay for caregivers to keep the oxygen on her day and night, and you want to spend it on that, that certainly would help but caregivers, even just aides, will cost a lot of money. If caregiver only charged $10/hour that would be $1680 a week and caregivers cost more than $10. None of that would be covered by any type of insurance.
I would see if hospice evaluation can be done. They will advise you and if she is accepted, the hospice nurse will be a source of support for you.
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My mom was the same way. We fought a losing battle. She took it off every time she could. The only time that we could keep it on was when she was sleeping. We would reapply it & it would stay on until she woke up & took it off again. The only time that she might wear it is when she becomes SOB & asks for it.
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Good Suggestion, but probably NOT workable. She is extremely heavy and the walking area around her bed is 'nil'.

It's still the same problem in the end: She "whips it off" whenever she wants to.

Really appreciate your taking the time to pass on the "suggestion". . . @;-)

Dee Dee Grant
Pleasant Grove, UT
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sunshinelife Nov 6, 2020
you can buy a "rebounder" where she can sit on the and push on the rebounder and this will help her circulation and her lymphatics tremendously. I bought my grandfather a good quality used one on Ebay. As he got stronger he could hold the removable bars on the side and bounce gently.
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Well you are right. If she requires 24/7 care then she probably needs 4 caregivers to keep two from working 12 hour shifts. So two at the minimum if the goal is to keep it on 24/7. I would be happy she is going to the bathroom though.
My aunt (on hospice) was recently sent oxygen as she had an episode of low readings one night. Hasn’t happened since so she hasn't started using it. I know I will have the same problem. The question has come up before. There was a discussion amongst knowledgeable forum members who suggested a type of tape but I don’t suppose that would help if she has to go farther than the cord allows.
Would she use a bedside commode and not take it off? I know that’s still more work for you but you might at least be able to sleep all night.
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