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My 94 year old mother lives in an "independent living" apartment 8 hours from me. We hire a professional to take her to doctor's appointments but she refuses to allow her to dispense her medicines. She has not been taking her medicines correctly (because I count pills when I visit) and just now lost a 90 day prescription for her blood pressure. Do I force her to accept help? She also refuses to move near me.

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Boy I can relate to your post! My mom is also 94 and lives in independent living. But I do everything for her - bring her food, fix her meds, take her everywhere, take out her garbage, pay her bills, etc. She kept forgetting her meds despite my best efforts to get her to take them. She also refused help over and over.

When I went over there two weeks ago, she hadn't taken her meds for three days, despite my asking and her assuring me she'd taken them. So that was it. I told her we were getting people to give them to her (2X a day) no questions asked, and she said OK. I think she understood I was at the end of my rope.

For the first week, she couldn't remember they'd been in to give her the meds, which freaked me out a bit. I knew her memory was bad, but this was one more confirmation that she needed help desperately. I kept checking her pill containers to assure they had been in. We also had to hide her pills, because she'd get confused and take them before the girl came in, throwing everyone off. So now, knock on wood, everything has settled down and she's accepting it just fine. For my mom it was important that she not have people under foot all of the time. So they come in, hand her pill container to her with a glass of water, she takes them and they're gone. So she's OK with that. Good luck with your mom, it's a tough call to make.
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Thanks everyone. It's not that she won't take her pills. She just doesn't remember to take them correctly and now she has lost a 90 day supply. The professional is available through her independent living and she actually holds the meds, orders when needed and dispenses them. However, for two years my Mom has refused for us to set this up. I believe giving up taking her meds is a piece of independence she doesn't want to relinquish even if it could cause serious medical consequences. Isn't it negligence to allow a 94 year old with memory problems to make a decision that appears to be detrimental to her health?
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lvdaughter, your Mom is 94 years old, let her do what she wants as long as she is in a safe environment.

Could be she doesn't like the side effects of the blood pressure pills, I sure don't, the pills make me groggy. Some times its the fillers used in the pills that create other non-user friendly side effects. Change manufacturer and see if that helps.
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There's no way to force her to accept help.

Is this professional a home health aide? They can give your mom med reminders but aren't allowed to set up or administer the meds although many do (wink wink nudge nudge nudge). :-)
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Your mother is not alone in this when it comes to refusing pills. My mom, when she was diagnosed with dementia, eventually became violent. The doctor prescribed pills for it. My mom wouldn't take it. She would clamp her mouth shut so tightly, dad couldn't get her to take it. He found ways of sneaking it in her - in her food. But she caught on, and would spit it out. We would find the pills between the sofa cushions, under the sofa, etc.... She was very good at finding it her food. You cannot force someone to take the pills. You can trick them into it - but you cannot force them. Unfortunately, because you don't live close enough to drop by and sneak a pill in her food, this is not an option. Unfortunately, there is no other way without someone being there and finding ways to get her to take it (by hook or by crook.)

You cannot force her to get help. I tried that with my dad. I knew he had pneumonia. I called 911, they came, but he refused them to touch him, so they left without checking him. I called APS (adult protective service) and I was told that if my father doesn't want to go to the clinic and wants to die, there is nothing that I can do. They then referred me to the Elder law attorney. I went there and was told the same thing the APS told me. I went to dad's insurance hoping they would send a doctor to do a home visit. I was told very firmly that their doctors do NOT do home visits. Several people here told me that the pneumonia pain would get so bad that he would give in. Well, a few days later, he told me to call 911. As long your mom is of sound mind, she can refuse help. Unless APS in her area is willing to stick their neck out and do something. Unlike the APS here.
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What does her Dr say about her state of mind? Do they feel she can still make her own decisions? If so, it will be hard to convince her to accept the meds and help. One thing you can keep doing is letting her know how much you love her and need her to let you help her. There's different agencies that may be able to talk with her, others will have suggestions. ( Im sorry, Im basically new here and still trying to learn what /where help is available) Good luck
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