Mother in law wants to press life line for every odd ache or pain, what do we do? - AgingCare.com

Mother in law wants to press life line for every odd ache or pain, what do we do?

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MIL is 89. Every ache and pain unusual to her she wants to go to the hospital, keeps saying I am going to press lifeline if you don't take me to the hospital. She recently went to the hospital stayed there 5 days and they sent her home with oxygen which she stopped using a week later. She is sleeping with her head hung over almost to the arm of her chair and she is insisting the pain in the back of her neck means shes dying and wants to go to the hospital for an IV. Is this normal behavior for the elderly...oh yes, she will not take any suggestions to improve her situation, she disagrees with any suggestion.

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She is also showing signs of non compliance. She stopped using her oxygen. If she is not getting enough oxygen to her brain then she may be either sleepy or loopy. It sounds like she is living alone. Did any medical person recommend that she should not be left alone? Someone in your family needs to step up
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Is she living alone?
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Hypochondriacs exist in all stages of life. Take her to her family doctor and talk to him about her symptoms. They may be real or imagined, so it's worth going.
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Does MIL have other signs of cognitive impairment, poor judgment, delusions, etc.? I would say this is not "normal" behavior.

What happens when she presses life line? What is their protocol for notifying family? Maybe letting her press lifeline would be better than taking her to the hospital when that won't be useful.

Does she live alone?
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Why did they keep her in the hospital for 5 days?

I'd likely discuss it with her doctor and try to establish a course of treatment for whatever her needs are. If one doctor can establish a report with her, perhaps, her need to go to ER will decrease, unless she really needs it. Also, sometimes, people with anxiety disorder feel compelled to go to ER. Does she suffer with anxiety?

I'd also have her a mental eval. Odd behavior like that could indicate cognitive decline. There are so many things that could be involved, like meds, UTI or other infections and physical pain.
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