Is moaning common with elderly? - AgingCare.com

Is moaning common with elderly?

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Sometimes my mother will moan and groan for hours. I'll ask her if she is in pain and she may say no or didn't realize she was moaning. It's very nerve racking. Sometimes I wonder if she is trying to get attention.

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Yes, it's completely normal. It's self comforting. Similar to when you're sick, you find yourself moaning. Not for any reason in particular, but it helps relax your for a moment.
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My Mom is 94 and has begun the moaning too. I ask the same ?'s. I have been told it is for attention. I, too will leave the kitchen to work in my office & this happens. I have a sitter for Mom that she loves, but as soon as I leave I hear her say where did Suzie go.
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I have noticed my grandma moans when something is bothering her including pain. When she gets herself worked up or is confused or upset, she sits and does this repetitive moan. Before she did the moan she would repeat herself in much the same manner speaking, "I don't know what to do." so I think it's similar to that response. Her anxiety gets up and instead of expressing what is bothering her whether it be having to walk to the bathroom as mentioned before, or having to go take a shower, or sit in a chair waiting for dinner to be placed in front of her, or being alone for 2 minutes so I can use the bathroom or getting ready for a doctor's appointment or sundowning and whatever goes on during that time in their brain, she moans repetitive.

It's not like a real pain moan where it's long and drawn out. It's a short fast moan that is repetitive. It's bothers me too but more so because it seems to me I should be fixing whatever is causing it but sometimes it can't be fixed or helped. It really drives me crazy when I know it's because she's alone for a minute because I can't sit and stare at her all day and she has someone with her in the room yet it's not me so she does that repetitive moaning sound until I return.
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Thanks Jeanne for your comment. My mother who has congestive heart failure moans constantly. It is most evident when I am escorting her to the bathroom. I was not sure whether it was shortness of breath, or anxiety. She is on oxygen 24/7 but the self comforting really makes sense to me now. I have anxiety just wondering why she is moaning! She has no pain, I think it might be a combination of a lot of things, but will now add self comforting to the list. Thanks to Gretch for addressing this topic.
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I have read that moaning and similar sounds can be self-comforting.

I suppose it could be an attention-seeking device. Is your mother glad when you ask her if she is in pain or otherwise pay attention to her sounds? Does she seem to be needy or lonely in other ways? Would it be possible to pay a little more attention to her when she is not moaning, to kind of reward the quiet?

Moaning and/or making other sounds can be a dementia symptom. Do any of Mother's other behaviors seem at all irrational or confused? How is her memory?

She says she isn't in pain, but is it possible she has a constant low level of pain? What causes her mobility problems? Could that be painful?

If this were a betting pool I'd put money on the self-comforting. But not a lot of money. There could be many things behind the moan.
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