My mom who has completely refused any medical help has not been feeling well lately, yet when I try to understand what is it she is feeling she is not clear. She says she feels something “weird”, like a hot wave coming up her torso, and then two days ago she said she had a tingling sensation in all her body. She also has nausea most of the time and burps a lot.
The tingling and “weird sensation” she said she had, made me suggest calling a doctor and to my surprise she agreed. To give some background my mom has refused to be seen by a doctor for years after she was checked up last after her chemo and radio treatments ended. I think her last check up was probably four years ago. Since then, no doctors.
The doctor came and I suggested she should get done some blood work, taking advantage of the opportunity, and she did. Results came showing two pancreatic enzymes high and a possible urinary infection. The doctor is now doing further research to find out origin of the infection. My mom has had no fever though.
The huge dilemma I’m having is that my mom’s nerves I think have collapsed. She cannot even sleep, I notice her in constant anxious state, even her movements evidence she lost control of her anxiety. She takes Alprazolam and clonazepam, but nothing works. She’s always had a very difficult time managing her nerves, and to top things, recently her best friend passed away and yesterday a cousin of hers did too. The death of her friend was devastating for her though, that started the severe nervous breakdown I think, adding now the actual illnesses. Also I’m sure with these deaths she feels she’ll “go” too soon, my mom is 83 and for years she’s told me she can feel she’ll go soon.
The problem is, I have no idea how much of what she feels is a result of physical illness and how much is a result of her nerves. Unfortunately nerves I know affect the stomach tremendously, so the constant nausea could be nerves or the physical problem or both... the tingling sensation I think was a result of the nerves. See, her cycle I believe starts with her feeling for example an stomachache and then she starts getting nervous and the stomachache leads to nausea and that makes her more nervous and the nervousness worsens the whole situation, then she feels other symptoms and she starts thinking of what those symptoms could be, then she feels she’s dying...it’s a sad, worrisome and almost desperate situation for her and for me.
On the physical aspect, and as a “result of the results”, I’m very concerned about the pancreatic enzymes being altered because for us who have been through cancer either as the patient or a relative, the mind easily goes there. Although the doctor said to try a zero fat diet for seven days and do the test again. I PRAY it works.
Plus the idea of keeping doing tests on her is not a good scenario for my mom. That’ll affect even more her already critical mental and emotional state.
I guess I’d sum up my questions as follows:
- If the fix for the issues evidenced in the test results is not just a diet and there’s more research required or something not good going on, how OR do I tell my mom? Since I know for a fact she will fall deeper into depression and nervousness.
- Do you have any idea about what to say to someone that’s on the verge of a nervous breakdown and their mind is going a thousand miles/minute thinking of what their symptoms could mean and that what they feel is the beginning of the end to help them calm down?
- How do you handle this as a caregiver to protect yourself? I haven’t slept either, my blood pressure is acting up, my head hearts and I CANNOT GET SICK, I need to control this. But I’m having a hard time doing so. I’m the only person caring and responsible for my mom, and I just want the best for her.
Ps. We are not in the US, not the same medical system, not the same help available.