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After grandma died 4 years ago, grandad moved in with us.


It has been really difficult, because he was always a difficult person. But lately it has been going downwards.


He sits in the living room (which is joint with the kitchen) all day. And he has chronic kidney failure (which he doesnt know he does because he would panic). So because of this kidney failure there is this disgusting smell in the living room, and he is alone all day while we have other things to do and we do tell him to vent the space to open the terrace door, but he just doesn't.


It is driving us all mad. Nobody stays in there anymore cos we just cant despite cleaning and disinfecting every night when he goes to sleep.


Is there something else I can put into the space to remove the smell?


Air fresheners don't work.


I know that this seems like a small problem but things are just escalating and he is tearing the family apart. He already ruined the bathroom (which me and my mum disinfect every night because it is disgusting) My dad moved away because he can't take it anymore. And mum is going crazy as well because her life has become working and then coming home to clean after grandad.


Retirement home is not an option as he said he'd rather die than go there.


If I can just get rid of the smell i would mean a lot already. Make things easier.

Remove upholstered fabric chairs from the space. Do you have anything plastic or leather that you can switch into the room where he spends his time? (These are easier to wipe down).

Maybe the odor is really coming from his body (not the room) and is intensified if he is unable to effectively change whatever is holding the moisture (pants, underwear or incontinence products). If he is not using incontinence products, switch to them now. Is he able to effectively shower/bathe to get clean?

if he cannot get properly clean (and is reluctant to your helping) hire a person to help him shower. If you cannot afford this regularly, hire someone to come in a few times (and “train yourself” by observing their techniques).

Take good care of your mom. She has gone through significant loss already and now is suffering more, ongoing loss.

Many people may criticize her for taking care of your grandfather in light of the circumstances. Don’t criticize her—support and energize her. Tell her that she is helping you by bring a hero. This will help sustain her on those days that feel unproductive and useless.
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Reply to ACaringDaughter
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yes, get an Allen air purifier with a charcoal filter. the filter takes in smelly air, filters it and circulates it. Then you can add a slow cooking pot of water and cinnamon on the stove--it will take care of any residual.
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At one time we had a small room fan with a filter with it. One of the accessories was a charcoal filter to help eliminate odors.
I know that filters for the furnace A/C can be found that use charcoal to help with household odors are available.
You might check with service company that help locate these filters.
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I have the bedside commode for mom because she has Parkinson’s and has balance issues so I don’t want her walking down the hall to the bathroom and risk falling again on the hard tile floor. She uses the bathroom frequently so the bedside commode really helps.

I am the one who empties it. I get nauseous. I hate it. Then I lose my appetite and can’t eat. My husband gets upset because I don’t eat but I can’t force myself to eat. Smells do get to those who are sensitive to it. I am extremely sensitive to smells. I wanted to burn a candle in her room but mom said she didn’t want to accidentally knock it over and cause a fire. But she has a tall chest of drawers that I think I will try and put it on.

My second thought was one one of those plug in things.
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Reply to NeedHelpWithMom
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JoAnn29 May 12, 2019
Some things just mask odors. I was really surprised how the vinegar really worked.
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My Mom had an accident. I cleaned with PineSol and then bleach. A friend told me about bowls of vinegar. It actually took one in the bathroom that helped with her sitting/bed area.
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Lymie61 May 12, 2019
Vinegar helps neutralize and sanitize when cleaning with it and a raw onion cut in half or quarters even rings, in a bowl of water actually absorbs odors. I use both and baking soda in the rug and furniture when vacuuming.
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I just brought mom home from NH with Hospice . I wasn't sure if I could handle the smell of her urine and poop when I change her. I read everything on here, and bought the Winnex air purifier. AND I use the Bath and Body Wallflower plug in. So far no issues. I am pleasantly surprised. The Winnex is great. Look on Amazon for it and check reviews. I also bought a diaper holder that got great reviews, and it does work well....but not for adult diapers, as it won't hold but a few...so I put into scented bags and take out of house immediately. Good luck.
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pamzimmrrt May 11, 2019
I love the Winnex,, and BB&W great minds think alike
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There are some things you can get at bed bath beyond. Little pouches that are a certain charcoal. They absorb. Use all.
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Reply to Segoline
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Does he maybe have a fungal infection? My dad smelled awful and I thought it was from his incontinence, turned out he had a huge nasty fungus and once that was cleared up the kidney failing strong odor was a breeze to get rid of.

When my sister was on hospice they told us that a box of kitty litter under the bed went a long way in absorbing odor.

White vinegar in bowls set about the house can absorb some odors.

Does he bathe and change clothes often enough?

Best of luck and let us know what works.
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Reply to Isthisrealyreal
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Does it smell like a decaying fish?
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KateMARV May 12, 2019
yep exactly
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Thanks , ye we desinfect the toilet and the bathroom floor with domestos.
And mop the living room floor every evening, vent the place and change the couch covers every second day. It doesnt help.
The problem is mum and I leave every morning at 6:30 am and return at about 6 pm.

Thanks for the support and understanding. I can understand how bad it is to have someone smoke inside.

I am actually a nurse and I know what bad smells are, and people always point the finger at me as if how can i be a nurse if i am bothered by bad smells. I can deal with bad smells. But i just don't want it in my house and it is driving me mad.
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pamzimmrrt May 11, 2019
I get it, I go to work some days and think I smell like an ashtray, and I am a respiratory therapist! Luckily my co workers know my situation! My house used to smell nice and fresh, now it smells like a perfume factory! Mom is 88 and frail, we are not going to change her now,, so I just remember this too shall pass..
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My mom is a heavy smoker, and we got a Winex (?) air purifier. It does help some . I also use oil diffusers and those plug ins from Bath and Body Works, and they do help. If he can't remember to open the door, you do it. My mom is always cold so the door is an issue, even when we can Prove it is warmer outside than in! Bad smells are bad smells, no matter what causes them. I am sorry your dad had to move away. Bleach in the toilet may also help?
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