How do I help my Dad adjust to the assisted living facility?

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He has pretty sever dementia but very few physical problems. He has been at the facility for 10 days. The first day that I did not go in to see him he complains of chest pain goes to hosp. , cardiac work up, no problem at all. This was not my first rodeo with the chest pain. I took him to the ER so many times with same result that I was beginning to feel like a fool. So it looks like he knows well how to get attention. Now for the hard part. I was so upset by this act that I did not go to the hospital, feel bad about. I am going to see him as soon as he gets back to ALF today. I want him to be as content as possible, they are sending him back to AL with ativan prn so maybe that will help. I guess you can tell I am trying to adjust too. Will anyone share their exp with me please?

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There's little you can do to help your dad adjust. He has to adjust on his own. Ten days isn't really long enough for your dad to get acclimated. Give it some time.

Is he surrounded by the things he enjoys? A favorite throw or some family photos? See if you can give his apartment a homey feeling.

Moving is so stressful for elderly people and moving into a facility can be extremely difficult. There has to be a period of adjustment. Does the facility know that he's struggling? You might mention it to them, maybe someone can stop by and say hello to your dad from time to time until your dad gets settled.

One thing to remember: you have no control over your dad's behavior. If he wants to call 911 for chest pains let the ER check him out first before you go rushing to his side yet again, if you suspect his chest pain is a bid for attention. You have to have boundaries to stay sane and healthy yourself.
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I think the Ativan will help him hopefully. There is a period of adjustment and it is difficult as the dementia progresses. I had been through same thing with my mother with respect to going to the hospital multiple times and finding nothing to be wrong. She went so many times, I had lost count. I would rush to the hospital to be there for her. However, I did not go every time to the hospital as it seemed to actually make things worse. She was always looking for attention - and this was very sad.

I was in touch with the ER doctor and nurses when I did not go to hospital. Most times, she was sent right back to the NH. I felt like I was becoming an enabler - as this attention is what she wanted. She eventually seemed better if I did not go... I felt bad about not going as well; but it helped her realize that I was not coming when this happened. And she eventually stopped as the hospital trips for no good reason were exhausting and she finally calmed down.

Hugs to you across the miles... Take care
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My mother was helped most by seeing a geriatric psychiatrist who has her on antidepressant therapy and a low dose of klonopin for anxiety. The problem with prob meds and the elderly/infirm/dementia pts is that they often can't identify anxiety as what they are feeling. My mom always though she'd got a uti or high bp, when in fact it was generalized anxiety.
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