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My mother, 88, now in a nursing home, has never been a frequent pooper. Even when I cared for her and she was eating quite well she'd only go every 2 or 3 days. In the past 18 months she's broken a hip, had another stroke, some TIAs and her dementia has escalated.

She's now either in bed or her wheelchair (mostly bed) unable to sit up or stand and what little speech she has is somewhat garbled. As she likes her door closed the staff check in on her periodically. A vegetarian, she likes oatmeal and will eat breakfast, refuses lunch and will go to supper. She's skin and bone, eats very little and now weighs less than my Labrador. I was taking her lunch but she eventually refused to eat it. The NH provides a lot of juice and vitamin shakes and I stock her up with juice, bottled water, fruit and V8.

Needless to say she rarely poops as she's inactive and eats so little so, from time to time, she's given a laxative and then she explodes - diarrhea all over her and the bed such that they have to get out of bed with a hoist to clean it all up. My thought is that the pain, strain and embarrassment of a laxative explosion are harder on her than not pooping when she's not got much inside her to poop anyway. Your thoughts?

She desperately wants to go to a hairdresser in the next village (doesn't like the way the NH hairdresser does it) so I've made her an appointment for next week, booked the paratransit bus (with physical issues, I can't lift her) to take her and paid the hairdresser so all she has to do is go. I'll follow the bus and be there with her. If she doesn't go it's given her something to look forward to.

I feel her time may be coming near and I dread the phone ringing, just go one day at a time.

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My dad's doctor recommended an over the counter stool softener twice a day. It is a 50 mg one found at Fred's. He quickly got rid of the twice a day and is down to once a day and is just fine.
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a half dose or even less regularly of Miralax may keep things on an even keel rather than waiting for someone to pack up then blow out everything, or maybe something even milder like stool softeners (Colace, DOSS) would work fine. the only "laxatives" that aren't so good, that you can get desensitized to or dependent on are the irritant type ones, like Ex-Lax and maybe senna.
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I should have corrected with- you drink the wine! We do need to smile now and then ;-)
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Lol! Love the wine post. We used to mix Benefiber powder into the residents drinks to help keep them regular. It has no taste and does not clump or get thick like Metamucil. It could be mixed into her oatmeal.
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well talk to text certainly put a little bit of humor into my response! 1 scoop of miralax into coffee- no wine!
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the doctor recommended that my mom cut wine scoop of miralax and her coffee every morning she's been doing this for 4 years. I think it keeps her regular and it's better than going through the difficulties of constipation. of course please run this suggestion by your doctor
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Thanks Pam. Unfortunately my mother isn't "out and about". Mostly she's in bed and out of it. A shopaholic, the last time the NH bus went to Walmart she wouldn't go because she was just too tired. If, and that's a big "if" she makes the hairdresser appointment it will be with support all the way but it's likely she won't go when it comes down to it.

It now takes her half n hour or more to eat half a sandwich and I expect she'll soon be moved to the second dining room where residents are fed one on one.
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You can call Hospice just for an evaluation. But I would say if she is getting out and about, it is not yet time. Try putting the weight on with ice cream. As for the poop, I have found the sugar-free pancake syrup works well to keep things moving, she might like that in her cereal or oatmeal or on ice cream.
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