My mom keeps going over to one side when she is sitting up and eating. Any suggestions?


We stick in pillows and blankets to try to straighten her up. Anyone have a better way or know the reason? Thanks! Old Maid



In reading your other answers and posts, I noticed that your Mom has a lot of problems with mobility and that you stated that “she is bed bound and needs to be lifted from the bed by the wheel chair van man. I can't lift her”. Does this mean that you feed her in bed since you can’t lift her? Is this problem with sitting upright new or something that developed over time like a couple of weeks? If this is a new problem, then you might want to take her to see your doctor so that he can evaluate her and maybe refer her to Occupational Therapy again so that they can help you find the right equipment to help your Mom sit up straight.

If your Mom sits in a chair or a wheelchair while eating, then I would suggest a “wheelchair pillow cushion”. It is a one-piece padded, chair cushion that covers the seat bottom, back, and armrests with 3" of comfortable padding. has several different sizes and they cost about $30.00.

If your Mom is sitting up in bed while eating, does she have a hospital bed that allows you to adjust the head of the bed and has bed rails that you are stuffing pillows between? If she is in bed, then you might try a long “body pillow” or an “L-shaped body pillow” along the side that your Mom leans towards.

I commend you for devoting all of your free time (before and after teaching school) to your Mom. And I understand that you “wouldn't want to put her in a nursing home. I want to make sure she is well cared for and loved.”

As you well know, your Mom’s health is not going to get any better and that you are going to need more and more assistance with her. Some people will suggest that you place your Mom in a nursing home and while I realize that you absolutely will NOT do that, you will need to be open to what they are saying. Taking care of a loved one at home is extremely hard and can negatively affect your physical, mental, emotional, psychological and financial health. Many of us know that as we have experienced these problems as we care for our loved ones. Do what you can for your Mom and utilize her physical and occupational therapists and her home health aides to help you take care of your Mom. God Bless.
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Reply to DeeAnna

My Mom occasionally slouches over to one side as well, especially when she’s really tired. The PT changed her to a much smaller wheelchair since she’s only 92 lbs, and also gave her a removable pad that fits down the side of the chair between her body and the armrest (like a capital L) that’s about 1.5 inches thick that helps her keep more upright.
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Reply to rocketjcat

I had a client who had PD. She was also a "slumper" and was frequently falling over to one side--or off of a chair, etc. She went to PT 3 xs a week and worked out as much as she was able to do. She got marginally better--at least I wasn't driving with her head in my lap anymore.

Sadly, not much you can do to retrain those muscles--PT did help in this case, but only for a year or so. She had become too dependent on people helping her and propping her up and so she didn't "try".

PD is a nasty disease. Try to keep mom as mobile as possible w/o making her miserable. It's a fine line. PT have a lot of techniques to use to help caregivers help their LO's.
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Reply to Midkid58

Has she had a stroke?
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Reply to GardenArtist

What is your mother's diagnosis?

This slump is very common in Lewy Body Dementia or Parkinson's Disease Dementia. I'm sure it is not exclusive to those diseases, I just happen to know those.

Have you discussed this with her doctor?
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Reply to jeannegibbs