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Peace74: Since you reside in GA, is there really a need for a coat for hubby?
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That's easy, just put it on him or he just doesn't go out, plain and simple. If he has dementia as you said, then he probably won't be able to realize he needs a coat, and he probably may not realize when he falls seriously ill simply because he's unable to make sound judgments. It sounds to me like he probably needs a guardian to make his decisions and to make him do what's good for him. Up until my foster dad got pretty bad, I thought little to nothing about how he dressed because he usually dressed appropriately for the weather. By the time he got real bad he already obtained a guardian through APS. I volunteered but wasn't chosen, probably since I have little to no knowledge or experience with these types of patients and probably always because I lacked the proper resources to do the job right. It's not that I wasn't willing, I just wasn't equipped. The last time I saw him at the nursing home, I just didn't recognize him anymore because it just wasn't him anymore. Dementia and Alzheimer's has a strange way of changing people into who they're really not, and it can leave loved ones puzzled because the person has become a whole different person than the person they once were. I probably wouldn't have been able to handle him at a certain point as he became combative as I witnessed. That just wasn't him anymore. He now needs people to make him do what he needs to do, and he needs people to dress him appropriately for the weather and even for bed. He most likely puts up a fight each and every time they must deal with him, this can be disturbing for not only the patient, but also their loved ones. Nursing home workers might cross the line when they get frustrated, I saw this happen as one lady was roughly manhandled by a worker. The lady wasn't very big, the worker was much bigger than her. I reported the abuse, which is why I'm not allowed to go see my foster dad anymore because I'm one of those kinds of people who won't stand by and let abuse happened right before my eyes and say nothing. What happened is there was another lady working with the lady who abused the demented lady in the ward, and she wasn't any better than the abuser I saw hurting the demented patient. I think this has been going on for quite a while and has most likely happened before and the nursing home told the guardian to keep me away from my foster dad, and I strongly suspect it was definitely their way of covering up and hiding what's really going on behind closed doors. There wouldn't be special lawyers for this kind of thing if there weren't people being abused in the nursing homes, nursing home abuse does happen, I saw it for myself. Be very wary if you absolutely must put your loved one in a nursing home, some of the workers who get burned out and up abusing people in their care. They don't want people knowing this and they'll go to great links and well out of their way to try and hide it anyway they can, even if it means keeping loved ones away or even causing serious injury or death to those in their care
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jeannegibbs, I had to chuckle when you said "he's an engineer".... yep, that was my Dad, too. If my Mom didn't take control, Dad would be dressed in plaid shorts, stripe shirt, black calf high socks, and dress shoes. And my Dad would also be curious about the weather outside.
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Your situation reminded mine with my dad. He was 79 when moved from the tropics to north GA for cancer treatment. He would think that because inside apt temp was so comfortable was the same outside in winter. Then later on even when he knew it was cold he would say that didn't need to cover. We would end fighting telling him that we wouldn't leave apt until he put on his jacket, coat or hat. He would scream like a child but will end putting in on. Sometimes he refused so we ended carrying the stuff ourselves and telling him that it was there. Is hard when you feel that roles change and you end ordering your dad/husband to do things, made me feel very guilty. But reality was he turned into a child because his thinking and reasoning was not right.
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Men and women differ on their body temperatures. However, if your husband has dementia, you will have to be his thermometer because in his mind maybe he is remembering as a child he used to go outside in colder weather and he was fine. Just put a coat on him before he ventures outside. Make up a story if you have to and if there is only about 5 degrees difference between what is warm (70 - 75 degrees) then a sweater will do. I don't know where you live, but if it is really cold, there is a chance for frostbite and you don't want that!
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This reminds me of the interview questions in the dementia clinic for the caregiver. "Can he use public transportation alone?" No "Can he operate the microwave?" Yes "Does he dress appropriately?" Long pause ... umm, he's an engineer. "Let me rephrase that. Does he dress as appropriately as he always has?"

As others have pointed out, even people without impairments can have different ideas of what is appropriate when it is cold out. But it sounds to me like your dear husband's disease has reached the point where you may have to guide his dressing, at least for leaving the house. "I'm wearing my red coat. Do you want your blue one or the black one?" "I think your quilted jacket is going to be the best today." "Since you are all dressed up, let me get your dress coat out of the other closet." Try not to sound bossy or like his mother, but just matter-of-fact like you assume he is going to wear a coat."

My great guy asked every morning before dressing, "What is the temperature?" Sometimes I teased him and answered it is 65 in here and we are staying in today. But he always wanted the outside temperature. The fact that it was July and that yesterday was hot was not enough to give him dressing clues. But when I said it is 82 now and will get to 90 today then he dressed in shorts. Likewise the fact that it is January and there is snow on the ground didn't help him, but knowing that it is 23 degrees gave him the information to dress warmly. I guess we were lucky that he had some internal guidelines!
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Another thing that just came to mind.... sometimes we each have our own temperature gauge. My late Mom use to dress for the Polar Vortex whenever she went outside.... my late Dad would dress like he was going on a picnic. He just didn't get as cold as Mom did.

Same issue here in my house. Sig other is always freezing, and I find the outside weather not that bad. In both my Mom's and sig other's cases, both had thyroid issues thus it made them both feel so much colder.

GardenArtist made a good point about the coats themselves. I found my light weight flannel coat is very difficult to put on if I am wearing a flannel shirt as a sweater... lot of tugging to get on. A coat that has rayon lining is sooooo much easier to deal with.
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Canadians trot through the snow in shorts and tee shirts. I have no idea how they do this. I once met a man in Toronto, in a blinding blizzard wearing light work pants and just a flannel shirt. I think they are part Husky.
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Peace, your profile states that your husband had dementia. He may not even be aware of the cold and the need for a coat. Can you help him get a coat on before he goes outside, or is he venturing out on his own w/o your knowledge?

Does he have a coat that's easy to get on, or does it have buttons, say, instead of snaps? Maybe the design of the coat is a contributing factor. If it's a nice, cuddly, warm down coat, that might help him feel comfortable, and better, so that's it's more of a comfort thing than a basic instinct to keep warm.

At home, try wrapping fleece around him; he might get used to that warmth and be more inclined to seek it when outdoors, on some subliminal basis.

Men also do have more muscle mass and don't get cold as quickly as women, in my observation.
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Some guys, even without memory issues, feel they can get by without a coat. My sig other is that way, no coat or gloves.... thus when he is in the car driving, the heat is up full blast, and I have to close the heat vents in front of me as it is way too hot.

Occasionally I have to tell sig other the outside thermometer says it is 20 degrees, he better wear a coat and gloves. Usually he will do that, but I feel like I am his "mother" whenever I need to remind him.

Ever see guys in convertibles, top down, the outside temp is only 40 degrees? Macho looking? NOT. It says to me they haven't figured out how to get the convertible top up :P
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