Mom refuses to wear her alert necklace. Any advice? - AgingCare.com

Mom refuses to wear her alert necklace. Any advice?

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My mom has a Lifeline alert necklace that signals the company when she has a fall. They are instructed to call me before automatically sending EMS. Many times, I have been able to run over and help her myself. There was a false alarm 15 months ago and another one this weekend. At this latest one, I was out of reach so they sent EMS. She is very angry over the intrusion and now refuses to wear her necklace. My siblings and I have all appealed to her as far as her safety, our peace of mind, etc. I wondered about warning her that I will call her every couple of hours all day to verify that she is okay. That or put her in a facility. She really is still okay living on her own (in my neighborhood) except for the fall risk. She is 89 and showing some early dementia. She suffers from depression and has gotten more and more irrational. She takes her frustrations out on me as well. I should mention that I found out we could put a second unit in her house to increase the likelihood that she will hear the company checking on her. The first (centrally located) unit is loud enough, but she can't hear it from her bedroom with the tv blaring. I am wondering if anyone has any other ideas.

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Is there someone she respects outside of the family that might convince her to wear her alert pendant? Has she had a recent neurologic exam to identify her mental capacity to live independently? Is she still driving? You might give it a week or two of not mentioning it and see if she just forgets she hates the pendant.
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My mom hates the pendant...but she needs to wear it anytime someone is not with her. We all (no there aren't many of us) go and get it and put it around her neck. I also remind her that pushing the button DOES NOT MEAN she is saying "take me to the hospital" it just means "I NEED A LITTLE HELP" which may mean calling the next door neighbor or Daughter or Grandson or in fact 911. Practice makes perfect. Also there are ones that look like watches and ones that are pendants that can attach to the walker.
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She is not fine if she falls frequently. Assisted Living would be a good option, a whole lot safer than home alone. She will fall at assisted living as well, but she won't by laying on the floor for hours or days.
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copingdaughter, if your Mom refuses to wear her alert necklace, then she has two choices.... she either has to pay for around the clock care with caregivers in her own home or she would need to move to a "retirement community" [don't say nursing home because your Mom's generation has a totally different concept regarding such places]. Of course with your Mom starting to show some dementia, you might still be able to have this conversation with her.

If she thought the EMT's were intrusive, I could just imagine her answer to having around the clock caregivers. She will dig her heels in, as you are noticing. Sometimes, unfortunately, it takes a bad fall where she needs to go to the ER, then into rehab, and then you could move her to the next level of care.

I wouldn't call her every couple of hours, she would either find that also intrusive or she would get so use to it that she would lose track of time and start calling you 30 times a day if she didn't remember you just calling her 20 minutes ago. Dementia can be quite a challenge.
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Step back for a minute. She has dementia and can no longer reason. All the reasonable people in her life know that she needs this one intrusive piece of technology to temain in her own home safrly. But she can't see that. She can only see the "intrusion ".

What else is she not thinking clearly about? Cooking? Letting strangers in? Sending money to charity? Dementia is progressive. Believe me, it's time to look at Assisted Living. Take her on tours.
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Oh, shoot. She really needs it, but you know that. Even in my mother in laws facility, they have to wear it (at our cost.)

I am sorry, but for her own safety, she needs 24/7 care. After my sister died, partially from the stress of caring for mother, we had to wait it out.

She fell, her aid (bath lady) called 911 and she was unable to live alone, from there. She is SO much better in the local NH. It is just unbelievable. She should have been there years ago. She is 96.
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