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Mom is 94 1/2. She can't do sit-ups, won't walk outside esp. during this past brutal winter. We could get her a lift chair but I feel that will not help improve muscle strength. I feel she needs to have to try to get up on her own. Today she could not get up off couch, even with my brother's help. So....get her a lift chair or not?

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If your loved one has ALZ there will come a time when they cannot walk, talk or care for their personal needs. At that point anything that helps YOU help them will be good. When they become bedridden, none of this will matter anymore. Been there and done that. My mama died of ALZ in January and had been bedbound for more than a year, she had been overweight and as she failed she lost so much weight she was almost skeletal at the end. Thank G
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MommaPop, once we all get middle-age and our weight shifts to our middles, sit-ups won't help, it will only make it worse. The best exercise is walking, even if it a couple laps around the inside of the house every hour.
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If you are responsible for her food intake, then make sure she is eating a proper, nutritional diet. Excess weight is not good for her in a lot of ways. Joints, legs, breathing, falls. It is to her advantage to lose a little weight.

Our doctors have always said to avoid the lift chairs for as long as possible, because that only is a bandaid for that activity, sitting in that chair. They will completely lose the ability to use their knees and muscles and not be able to rise from any chair or toilet, for example. Better that you research the methods to assist her in using her own leverage to stand. You will have to remind her each time probably, depending on her level of dementia. She needs a proper chair height, with arms that extend to the front of the seat. She will skootch (a technical term, ha ha) out to the edge of the seat, placing her feet beneath her knees and using the arm rests, push up. There are videos demonstrating this on you tube. Be sure she has arms for the toilet, there are many varieties available or rails on the wall.

A physical or occupational therapist would be a very good idea, too.
Some hospitals have gyms in them that are less scary than a public gym and she might be able to go and ride the bicycles or walk on the treadmill at a slow pace. They have people who work there who could help her. Check into that.
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I meant to say reduced ability to transfer unassisted.

See if you can rent a lift-chair. Depending on how fast or slow her dementia progresses, it may not be worth buying outright. My mother went from unwilling to get up to unable to get up in a few short months. She is now a two-person assist to get up, out of bed, into a wheelchair, and onto the toilet. That is, a two-person assist when she will allow anyone to touch her.

The next thing to plan ahead for is refusal to bathe or change clothes. General refusal to cooperate. It is not a mean streak. It's brain changes. There are a lot of ideas about bathing on this site and from Teepa Snow on Youtube.

You might get her to be more active with a visiting physical/occupational therapist that her doctor can prescribe.
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I hope to heaven when I'm that close to 100 that everybody is giving me a hall pass. I plan to eat cake and drink wine as much as I want to at that age.

All kidding aside, see to your mom's happiness and comfort. Be prepared for things to change and for her to need more assistance with ADLs. (Activities of daily living). Expect some reduced mobility and ability to transfer unassisted and plan ahead.
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Do what is best for your health and safety. Mom is past the stage of learning new things.
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Thanks for your response. It's hard to know what to do. I will look into the chair, also the bedrail. That sounds like what will be next.
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My mother is 96. Yes, you are correct about her losing more muscle, but what does she have to lose at this point? Plus, you 2 could injure yourselves trying to lift her. They are pricey, but are very good for people that need to get up, on their own.
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