My dad is 82 years old and can only walk with walker or cane and is very slow. He needs knee replacements and refuses. What can we do?

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His house is filthy and he refuses to let us hire someone to clean it. He is very controlling and I feel like he wants my sister and I to clean. We both have respiratory issues and would not be healthy for us to clean. He has always tried to control us and this would be another way he could do that. We both work full time jobs and simply do not have time. What can we do?

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Toomuch has a point. Mom had rehab after a bout with a UTI. When I had a care meeting, the therapist would say, she doesn't follow instructions, she doesn't remember the exercises. Really! She has Dementia! TG the decision for rehab never happened again because I wouldn't have put her there again.
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Reply to JoAnn29
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I've just found this question while looking for advice on whether to allow my 84 year old dad to have a knee replacement. Our dilemmas started with the idea of a knee replacement. My dad has osteoarthritis and needed both knees replaced about 5 years ago. All the doctors suggested he do it but he wanted to fix the problem himself with exercises and snake oils. He also heard that you only get 15 years out of a new knee and he wanted to wait as long as he can because he is going to live way past 100.
Fast forward to this May he finally thought it was time. His GP (who suspected cognitive decline) sent him to a geriatric physician to see if he was up to the general anesthetic and low and behold he tells dad he has mod-severe dementia and the GA would likely finish his brain off. Dad didn't tell us all this, of course because he thought the doctor was crazy and WRONG! Now he is in a high care nursing home his decline has been so rapid. But now all he wants is to have his knees done. He can still walk unassisted although he has the dementia shuffle which I think he thinks is his knee problem, and he told me last week he doesn't have pain.
So Sofrustrated2, check out your father's brain before you encourage him to get his knees replaced. I have had so many people tell me this brings on dementia at this age and some people never get out of the bed afterwards because they can't learn the rehab or follow the instructions. What I am saying there are worse things to cope with than your father's immobility. Get his physiotherapy, massages and some core strengthening exercises. All my love.
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Reply to toomuchtobear
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oh but want to say don't let him know you are trying to force him into anything. because he will b ready to shoot you down. you have to keep a smile and agree. but at the same time do some investigating. like is this bathtub safe for bathing? is he bathing?
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Reply to wally003
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prior to moving my dad to assisted living. at approx. 89 years old....
at home HE HAD HIS WAY of doing things. I mean we all do. But since he was older and not thinking so well, his way wasn't always a good idea any more. how to convince someone? I don't know he was like arguing with a child.

~if possible try spending an extended visit with your dad (he lives alone?) to get a real idea how he is coping.~ Is he taking care of a home w a yard etc.?

after my dad passed away, my husband suggested my mom could move back to their home. he didn't think she was ready to stay in assisted living.

my mom has dementia. And there was no way (even besides the dementia) I would let my mom go back home and LIVE ALONE. not just because of danger due to dementia. but because I was scared because of her AGE and being venerable - - I could just see her going out into the night to take out the trash. and tripping in the dark. no big deal, "ive been doing that for YEARS!" she would say.

My dad when at home would not agree to anything I would say. "Lets sell the car? you're not driving any more." NO! whatever ..I guess he still saw me as a child.

my dad also had knee replacement on one knee and never did the other knee. which made him hold on to everything as he walked. the walls the furniture. he wouldn't use a cane or walker.(not until AL then he used walker.but he'd always say that's NOT MINE) Eventually he probably would have fallen at home. he would climb up on the ROOF if no one was there to stop him.

Sometimes you have to wait til something bad happens before you can step in to change it.

ive heard on this website something about a needs assessment. plus to check on how safe the home is. I don't know what agency that is tho.

I guess my point is (finally) that your dad may not be thinking anythings wrong and you may have to over-ride what he wants. that's why I say, spend an extended amount of time hanging out to see how he really is. Is he paying all his bills, and keeping it straight? my mom was paying things twice. my mom who always cooked balanced meals at dinner. was making super easy dinners (nothing wrong with that, but it wasn't her) I wouldn't know that except I knew both of them so well. my mom just wasn't able any more to PLAN meals. she was putting instant coffee in the coffeemaker. she would make cookies and leave out the butter or sugar.

so you need to look out for red flags. its possible theres a bigger issue than just a messy/dirty house.
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Reply to wally003
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How long has your father been living alone? Is he reluctant to have people he doesn't know coming into the house at all?

What I'd do, what you might like to try, is hire a one-off team to come in and blitz the place, making sure to be there while it happens to head him off and nip any problems in the bud. Then, with a bit of luck, the Before & After effect (take pictures) might soften his attitude to hiring regular help.

But the key thing is, while I respect your respect for your father's autonomy, he's living in squalor and it's going to get worse. Make it a battle of wills and you will wait forever for his permission. So don't wait. Go full steam ahead and let him try to stop you.
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Reply to Countrymouse
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Sadly, you cannot change him or his living conditions--for one thing at his age, it would be unlikely that he would tolerate the anesthesia well and also, he would be released to go home to what? A place that is not safe for him? He also would heal very slowly, if he even did.

My mother begged for a 2nd hip replacement "in case" her hip went bad-basically a preventive thing--so dumb. The dr not only told her no, he also fired her as a patient and put her name on a "don't see this patient" for as many other orthopedic docs as he could. She is a professional surgery junkie. At 87, she no more would have rehabbed from such a surgery than she could have flown.

There are injections that can be done in the joint that can last for months, relieving the pain and helping with motion. Encourage dad to look into that.

Try not to get drawn into his life. You have your sis--be tough together.
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Reply to Midkid58
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Sofrustrated, regarding the knee replacement, your Dad is doing the right thing. With your Dad's age, it could take over a year with a lot of rehab before he will feel comfortable with his knee. You and your sister would be caregiving for Dad for quite some time. Thus, be glad he is saying no.

Sometimes it is a generational thing, where the wife and the daughters are responsible for the cleaning. Bet he wouldn't ask a son to do the housework. When Dad ask for you and your sister to clean his house, say firmly "sorry, we cannot possibly do that" and don't say why, otherwise Dad will counterpoint saying for you both to quit your jobs.

Since your Dad is of clear mind, it is his decision to refuse to hire someone to clean. Let him live in the mess.
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Reply to freqflyer
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