My 92 year old Grandma complains that she can't walk, am I doing her harm by forcing her?

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My 92 yr old grandmother screams and cries that she can't walk or move her legs. I usually stand her up & hold onto her until she's steady then force her to walk by holding on to her hands & walking in front of her. Eventually she stops crying & keeps moving. Am I doing her more harm by forcing her to move?

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Stacie what worries me more than anything else is that you are doing this without being confident that you know what you are doing. Stop! Find out exactly what your grandmother's issues are, whether they're physical, psychological, whatever; and get advice on how best to maintain her mobility and wellbeing.

But as a rule of thumb, if you ever find yourself describing what you are doing as "forcing", then don't. Encourage, assist, coax, beg, use shameless bribery - these are all fine. Force is the wrong side of the line.
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I think your grandma needs to be assessed by a doctor or physical therapist. If she is crying it sounds like she is in legitimate physical pain, not a mental issue. You may be doing more harm and the pain and crying will not encourage her to try again. After multiple issues and PT, I have given up insisting that Mom try to walk as she is just too weak and arthritis in her legs is too bad. It’s not going to happen. We both are much happier with each other. But this decision was made in conjunction with her professionals.
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I guess I have a different opinion from everyone else. What you are doing sounds like physical therapy to me. In my personal experience, everyone from doctors to physical therapists have suggest I do similar things. In general, if someone doesn't keep moving then that's a sure fire way that they won't be able to move.

By all means, see a doctor about the pain. But if it's something like arthritis moving around is what can alleviate the pain. Which seems to fit in with what you are describing. Personally I have a bad elbow. When I wake in the morning it's stiff and painful. After I swing it like a rusty hinge for a while, it's all good for the rest of the day.

A gait belt might be useful. Think of it as a handle you can put on someone.
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As someone who cared for my mom at home I appreciate how much more difficult it can be to care for someone once they no longer can walk, do what you can to determine the reasons behind her reluctance... hopefully they are treatable.
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She is 92 years old and her granddaughter makes her scream and cry. I'd say that in itself is harmful, never mind whether it is good for her mobility.

We asked our mother's geriatrician whether we should encourage our mother to walk more. She said that no amount of walking or exercise would solve her mobility problems. Help her walk if she wants to walk. Pushing a grocery cart seems comfortable for many of the elderly with similar problems, and if she shops with us, that might not be a bad activity. But when that gets to be too much for her, use the store's wheelchair.

What made you decide that forcing GM to walk was good thing for you to do? I assume you sincerely have thought it was good for her. I'm glad you are asking now.

Get a professional opinion on what kinds of activities would be best for GM.
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I agree with needtowashhair. If you are physically pushing your mom aggressively to take a walk this is, of course, very wrong. But seniors are stubborn and will try every trick to not do what’s suggested.
I don’t think the OP is being mean. I think her grandma may turn on the tears to try to avoid that walk.
I doesn’t sound unreasonable to me that the grandma be asked to walk several feet daily. Walking is a skill set that if you don’t do it, you lose it. And the OP stated her grandma stops crying & proceeds to complete the walk.
JMO.
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Here's another data point. It's been known for a while but there was just another story about it on CBS news tonight. People in home care tend to do better than people in nursing facilities. They move around more, like walk, while at home. That helps them heal faster and stay healthier.
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In addition to the wise advise above, please remember that, unless you have been trained in how to help another person walk and can protect yourself in a fall, you are putting BOTH you and grandma in danger.

Many years ago, my mom was in a nice assisted living place where she was getting PT after a fall.  They had taken her to the hospital, gotten all the right xrays.  But mom was being very "stubborn" when the PT came, refusing and crying, finally getting up and "trying" to walk. When he saw this, he IMMEDIATELY ordered another xray.  Mom had a broken hip. 

Are you using a gait belt?
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As long as nothing is broke having them walk a few feet a day or so many days a week is so beneficial. My mom 91 just loves to stay in bed but nursing home was walking her 5 days, with assistance, walking which meant maybe 20 feet. But the benefits mentally & physically were great. Then a month went by no walking confusion on which department was doing it (I'm looking into this) and now back to square one can only hobble about 3 feet all with help. Your trying to do a good thing just check with doctors to make sure she is ok. At some point she will just do what she wants & will need to accept the consequences for her actions. And then ourselves need to accept as well. Its hard when we love them & want the best for them.
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Her Doctor will be able to prescribe PT sessions to do it safely and analyze any orthopeadic issues. They even come to your home and Medicare pays for it %100. My mom is 93, and she just needs to keep her muscles from deteriorating so that she can stay at home instead of going into a nursing home. I find that our elders listen better to a stranger, and will work harder during a professional PT session. My advice would be to keep it as positive as you can and try to make it fun. God bless you for spending the time trying to make her better.
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