My mom calls the police at night. What can we do to stop her?

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My mom has dementia and is in independent living. She has started calling police at night because of hallucinations. What can we do to stop her and should we put her in assisted living?

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Britan- geez Louise we know what u r going through. Mom is probably past the point of IL or AL. She will need to go to a NH & for that u will need an MD to write orders for "skilled nursing care" needed. The NP - if their testing for the dementias is just the 3 ?'s - is totally useless. You need to get mom to be seen by a gerontologist. A real gerontologist & not just the old family medicine MD or her old internal medicine guy. The gerontologist will have within their group whatever other specialists needed, like a geriatric neurologist. I bet mom does not have Alzheimer's but one of the other dementias (maybe frontotemporal) so will need her meds tailored to that dementia. But they can do the testing to determine where she is within the level of cognitive ability to get a good handle on this.

As Jeannie gibbs has aptly posted " taking your elder to a gerontologist is like taking your kids to a pediatrician". For us, I was able to get mom seen by the program with the medical school by a referral from an orthopedic surgeon. On retrospect, it has been just priceless in this long journey with my mom aging (she has Lewy Body dementia). Most larger cities will have gerontologists, likely a 2 month reach for an appointment but once seen she can easily get appointments as needed.

Now about your legal status in all this, if she will just flat resist doing DPOA etc then the only option is the guardian/conservator route. Do u live in the same state? g/c 's are their own set of sticky to deal with, if u dont live in the state,you may not be named the G/C. Really do whatever you can to get her to do DPOA MPOA. Tell her she can totally revoke it as needed, just whatever to humor her to get her to sign them. You will be best off having two witnesses to the document. Is there someone in her neighborhood that could do this? Like someone u went to HS with or a older neighbor you knew from when u lived there? Check FB or your HS reunion site for people.
Let us know how all this progresses too. Good luck!
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Just re read your question. Next time you get a call that she's doing something dangerous, please ask whoever is reporting this to call 911. You do so also.
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The Nurse Practitioner has fobbed you off. Be persistent, go back to her MD's office and stamp your feet until somebody does a proper cognitive assessment. Little old ladies who hop onto roofs looking for non-existent leaks do not pass Go with those.

If you still don't have any luck, call APS and report (as unemotionally as you can) everything you've told us. Your mother's behaviour is placing her at serious risk, and it is their responsibility to ensure that vulnerable elders do not come to harm.
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Can you get her to go with you to see another doctor, say a geriatric psychiatrist? You certainly must keep her from driving by disappearing the car, the keys or disabling the ignition. You may have to wait for her to fall and need medical attention. If this happens, do not rescue her, call 911. When the hospital is ready to discharge, make sure they know what's really going on and that you cannot provide adequate care or supervision.
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Hi, Britan. I see that you have posted under an old thread, instead of starting a new one. But, the other one was 18 months ago, so hopefully, you will get some answers.

My mother is 95 and is in a very nice nursing home in central IL. She had to go, after falling and breaking ribs, while living alone. If it comes a point where your mom is in the hospital, tell the doctor that she can no longer live alone. I hope that you are able to get POA, or some other control of her finances, so that she can afford a nursing home.

What would she do, if the car just disappeared? I guess she might call the police. If you are in a small town, I think that the chief of police would talk with you about your options. They certainly don't want her calls all of the time, and they don't want her to cause an accident. What if you just took the keys?

The poor woman must be a mess and really does need help. You could also call the IL. Dept. on Aging and see if they could get involved. How is her house? It is clean or is it a disaster? The state will step in if she is a hoarder.
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My mom lives in Illinois, she has signs of dementia/alzhiemers for about 7 years. my father passed away 5 years ago, I am an only child. sje lives alone and shouldn't. she is paranoid, hates me tells me repeatidly that she hates me and wishes I was dead. She calls the police at night because she thinks the neighbors are knocking on her windows and ringing her door bell. she doesn't have a door bell, and her neighbors are in their 80's and been her neighbor for almost 60 years. she says I am paying them to harase her. she has hit so many things with her car (Lincoln town car) that she tears off a piece of duct tape and tries to patch her car. her television was turned off last month for none payment she paid her light bill twice last month and is getting audited by IRS. She doesn't take all of her info to the FREE tax preparer and they don't know any better so is claiming different every year. mows her grass every day of the week. Got a call she was on her roof, I immediately went there and asked her what she was doing said she was checking for leaks. she has no POA as does not trust anyone. Where do I turn what do I do? she needs placed in a safe environment. I spoke with her nurse practitioner and she said she asked her three questions : the year - the president - and if she knew where she was and was able to answer all of those so she thinks she is OK. She is an idiot. what do I do ?
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She is in IL right, and not AL?

My mom was big on calling the police when she was in IL. This all related to her being "robbed". Mom has Lewy Body Dementia and also had/has hallucinations too. Lewy for my mom was so that she seemed very capable and then there would be an episode of way over the top behavior. Keep in mind, this is IL so each apartment or unit has their own phone and there were 3 emergency pulls in each apartment for the residents. The first two calls, the police came and did a report. All standard. On the 3rd call, the head of IL came with the police to meet with my mom. My mom was all fixated & hyper on having them arrest another resident for stealing from her. I got a call from the police the next day as to what the options were - either they responded and she would be charged a fee for it, like what is done for false alarm calls or I could (as her DPOA) sign off for non-response. What the police did was to have her phone # put to some sort of diversion program. It was done within the community outreach program, so they would take her call but would not respond. At the same time, I was getting my mom's medical done to have her qualify for skilled nursing and she moved from IL to NH a few weeks after the last call to the police. Her level of dementia was at the tipping point at not being cognitive or competent enough for IL. I'd have a heart to heart with the IL regarding the situtation for your mom and her suitability for this IL.

My mom does not have a phone in her room @ NH either. The consensus seems to be that those elders who do this will persist and total removal of phones is the only option.

I love the idea from vw9729 about having a service with "parental limits".
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Jimmy, It does sound like your mother either needs to be moved somewhere else or have her meds adjusted. I'm assuming that she has a call button that most residents in asst. living have where she can push the button for help? If she does, then maybe at night someone could remove the telephone from her room. She'll still have a way to call for help, but it won't be to the police. It'll be to the whoever is on duty on the evening shift where she lives.
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Another suggestion is to talk to her doctor and see if he could prescribe something to help her sleep or with her anxiety at night or both. It could also be something she is already taking that could be causing this. But it sounds like if she is getting that scared, she needs a little more help in that area. Plus, you may want to check with the phone service she has. Mine has "parental limits" and I can control when the phone can be used - so I could block the nighttime hours if needed to keep her from making phone calls. But I would try the first suggestion first. Good luck!
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I agree with Jessie. It sounds like Mother needs nighttime supervision, either with in-home care, or in a different setting. The nature of dementia is such that most persons with that disease cannot continue living alone beyond the early stages.

Is her doctor aware of her hallucinations? Medications aren't always successful with that symptom but it may be something her doctor could help with.
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