When will this end? Mom has lost her hearing aids again.

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She is always miserable, negative, uncooperative and has no quality of life. I stopped in to see Mom at AL today. When I walked in the room, the smell was horrible - she again had diarrhea - and it appeared she did it in her pants and all over the toilet. She had all the windows open and the air conditioner going full blast. Her slacks were in the garbage, her shoes and purse on the bathroom floor next to the toilet. (She has the runs a lot because she ruined her bowels with milk of magnesia) She has depends and pad, but doesn't use them all the time. She refuses help in AL, refuses to shower too.

Worst of all SHE LOST HER HEARING AIDS AGAIN! This is about the fifth time. These aids were only 3 months old - cost $3500. Just two weeks ago I took her to have them calibrated and he fixed all the problems. The AL aides put them in in the morning and take them out for her at night because she can't do it. NOW SHE IS COMPLETELY DEAF! Whining, crying, on and on. She has diarrhea when she gets upset. They said they have looked everywhere for them and can't find them, don't know how they could be lost between the time they put them in and took them out. Heaven knows how she could have lost them unless she took them out and threw them away herself. And what upset her the most? She didn't want them to know because she is afraid they will put her somewhere where she will have to do what they tell her to do. Of course she doesn't remember they were in her room yesterday, looking for them. And they were also in there because she had the runs then - claiming she was embarrassed because "it has never happened before" HAH!

She is in such a nice place and it is so sad she is totally uncooperative, we can't reason with her, she won't accept help) I'm so afraid she is going to be kicked out and end up in memory care walking around deaf and raising Cain because she is locked in and "taken care of".

We can't keep this up, buying hearing aids for her to throw away.
She is almost 101, mobile, able to dress, go to the bathroom, do things for herself. That is what makes this so frustrating, this is nothing new - even before the dementia she complained constantly, wouldn't accept help, etc.

This has not been a good day - just learned my dear, kind, wonderful brother-in-law is in hospice, dying of a brain tumor - a man who loved life and was loved by all. And here is my 101 year old mother - creating misery for herself and everyone around her, especially me - it doesn't seem fair that the one who lives is the one who is never happy.
I even brought my sweet puppy, who jumped up on the bed and walked up to her, wagging her tail and giving her a kiss - and she elbowed her out of the way.
This has not been a good day!

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AmyGrace, big, big hug. I hate days like the one you're talking about. I really hate thinking about all that poo just sitting around. And I'm wondering if she might have flushed her hearing aids. I hope not! I hope they turn up. I personally wouldn't buy anymore after she has lost so many. They are too expensive to buy again and again. I like the idea of the big horn to the ear. I do wish someone would invent a hearing aid that didn't have to be cleaned or removed ever. That would be wonderful. The Lyrics are like that, but not good for someone with a lot of hearing loss.

I'm hoping the poo has been cleaned. Poor you! Poor AL staff. And poor Mother, too. I know that living like this is the pits for her, too.
AmyGrace, so sorry to read about your visit with your Mom... I remember not long ago you were dealing with your own health issue, a broken ankle, that made it hard for you to get around.

Question, how does your Mom get her hands on milk of magnesia? Or was this something she did in her past? Decades age, gals my age used that to keep their weight down, which never made sense to me.

If she feels she needs something [hard habit to break] tell her Deer Park water works great, and you know of one store that sells it, make it sound like it is hard to get :)
freqflyer. Mom was in IL for 9 years (although I campaigned for 4 years to move her!) That was when she went through her obsession with her bowels. She could buy MOM in the little store there and begged management not to sell it to her but they explained it was IL and they don't have the right to refuse her, nor was it fair to others to take it off the shelves. She would buy several bottles because she had it hidden all over her apartment and we used to search and take it away. But she always managed to get more or hide it somewhere we would miss. Her short term memory was bad for years so we know she didn't remember taking it, or took too much, then got the runs, cried about it - only to tell us the next day she hadn't gone in 4 days! I think she used to just chug it out of the bottle because sometimes she would use a whole bottle in a week. We moved her to AL in Feb, but she ruined her bowels with it so now, she loses control. The obsession with "poo" seems to be generational. I can remember my grandmother asking me if I "went" every time I saw her. I never understood why she had to know, or cared. lol!
Amy, this is a wild shot and I don't know if it would work, but hearing aids have batteries and I believe they're metal. I've used metal detectors to pick up dropped staples and small metal items. If you or anyone can get a metal detector, you could sweep the place with it. It's obviously time consuming, but you might get lucky. I think I got mine at Harbor Freight.

Good luck.
GardenArtist: I could have done that when she was in IL, but now at the AL, not so easily, plus its 40 miles away and they have been gone for two days. They are a good size - she is so deaf she needed a larger, behind the ear with a tube and plug into her ears. I tore her apartment apart - every drawer, cabinet, pocket, under and inside everything. They are gone! After I left there yesterday I called AL and suggested they look in the beauty salon. They said the nurse would call me today about this but it is 12:30 and no call yet. I'm beginning to be upset about how much they do or don't notice - case in point, that she wasn't eating and lost 6 pounds. Shouldn't they have been noticing that sort of thing during the day, that she was not wearing her hearing aids, its pretty obvious as she is deaf as a rock without them - why was no one aware they were gone until the next morning when the aide went up to put them in? Shouldn't they have a record of taking them out the night before, putting them in the next day and narrowing down the time they were first missing? They said they even looked in the trash. I am really upset - at her, at them, at the whole thing. When she was in IL I ran around constantly because of those aids. I thought at least now in AL I would not have to do that - not for over $4000 a month.
It's a difficult thing to deal with. I've had similar problems with my cousin's eye glasses going missing. Sometimes they place items in places you would never expect. She could have given then to another resident and they are in that person's drawers and they have no memory of it.

I will say that I think that based on your description of your mom's dementia, it is very likely she would misplace another hearing aid. Whatever you decide to do with regard to the hearing aid, I would wait until your mom is settled before purchasing another one. It could be a continuing problem.

I'm not sure why you believe that a higher level of care for your mom would be a bad thing. You mom's reasoning doesn't seem to be sufficient to determine if she is getting the proper level of care. If her memory is so bad, she won't remember what the staff is telling her what to do or not.

Also, I don't think your mom is being difficult on purpose. She isn't able to do any better than she is doing. It's not her fault and she doesn't seem to be able to have unlimited access to the hearing aid.

Sometimes, the dementia makes it unsafe for the resident to have medication, mouth wash, air condition thermostat etc. at their immediate disposal. In dementia care, things like that are not allowed to be in their rooms. It's kept safe as you would for a toddler.

You say your mom has no real memory, is having toileting accidents and is losing items. I think I would meet with the resident coordinator or director to discuss if the facility can meet her needs. I know you just moved her there, but if there are daily mishaps that disrupt her so, I can't imagine they would think she's in the right place. And you could discuss the missing hearing aid.
If you are far away, do it by skype. If you are wondering if she will be able to stay there, then I bet they are too. I would do my homework to find alternate options, just in case you get the call that they can't keep her there.
Re the poo issue, you might talk with her doctor and find out if she can take Imodium along with her other current medications. My Mom is incontinent and used to have diarrhea often -- largely due to anxiety, I think -- but her doctor okayed her to have up to 2 Imodium per day, and this has made the diarrhea mostly a thing of the past (she still occasionally has a day or two of it). She usually takes 1 a day with her morning medications.
Sunny, Mom can pretty much take care of her personal needs. Even before the dementia she was difficult. Even when she was mentally ok, but needed help with housecleaning, she refused to let the woman in the door. The doctor and AL believe she is not ready for memory care because she is aware, knows people and can take care of her basic needs. Also, it is twice as expensive, and we can't afford it until absolutely necessary. She refuses any help, except putting the hearing aids in and taking them out, but they remain in her room.
I just spoke to the nurse and asked if they can trace whether they went missing in the morning or at night - AND THEY DIDN'T KNOW! And I am paying them an extra $450 a month to give her medication once a day and take care of the hearing aids.
AZlife, good idea about the imodium. When I go up there and raise you know what about the hearing aids, I'll find out if the diarrhea is regular, if so I'll contact the doctor.
Consider either a personal amplifier system rather than hearing aids, or just a chalkboard to write on. If they find these ones, they don't need to be leaving them in her room overnight either. I wish for you and for her both that the finances were more favorable, because she really is at a point of needing more guidance and care.
hi Amy - I apologize I have no suggestions but I'm sending you a hug instead. hang in there friend.

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