I would appreciate suggestions for dealing with my mom, with dementia, who insists on having a phone in her room at the nursing home.

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If your Mom already has a phone (either a land line or a cell phone) in her room at the nursing home, please talk to the Nursing Coordinator and the Social Service Director for your Mom's Unit, prior to taking the phone away.

I got into REALLY BIG, BIG, trouble for taking Mom's cellphone home one night when she was extremely upset and having delusions that my brother and I had gambled away the farms and other delusions.  She was calling her elderly friends in the town we used to live in at 8 PM that night.  The next afternoon, the Social  Service Assistant (SSA) called me and was extremely angry that I had taken Mom's phone away the previous night and she would not listen to my reasons for taking Mom's phone.  The SSA demanded that I return Mom's cellphone immediately!!  - which I did.  (There is much more to this story, but I will not tell it here.) 

If you have not given her a cellphone or landline phone, I support JoAnn and would not give your Mom a phone either and would also tell your Mom "white lies" as to why you have not bought a phone to her.
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Reply to DeeAnna
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I would not give her one. She will be calling you all the time for things you have no control over or can't possibly do because its 3am. I gave Mom my old very simple cell phone. It turned on and off by the same button. It was like using her cordless. She never got the hang of it. One of the first things she couldn't do anymore was answer a phone or use the remote.

How to deal? How bad is her Dementia, might have to tell a little white lie. Tell her you are looking for the right one and haven't found it. It may get stolen.
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Reply to JoAnn29
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When my mom, with dementia, entered the nursing home, she insisted on having a phone as well. But, within a few months she became more confused, hallucinatory and delusional. She also could not differentiate day from night and would call me at 3AM. She was paranoid and was convinced a man from her old apartment was “stalkIng” her. When her phone would ring and there was no one there, she was convinced it was this man and became upset, I was forced to take her phone after that. I made quite certain she knew she could always call me from the nurse’s station and they would even dial the phone for her.

If Mom can still handle making phone calls, let her have the phone until she is no longer capable. One day, it just disappears and you explain to her it’s being fixed. Of course, it’s never fixed.
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Reply to Ahmijoy
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