Regarding increasing confusion... - AgingCare.com

Regarding increasing confusion...

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Gma (94) has cognitively been great until recently. She is getting more and more confused wiht time of day. Last night at 10pm she asked when the nurse was coming...we had hours early said the nurse was coming tomorrow. She hadn't gone to sleep in between that we know of, she was working on a puzzle. This has now happened a couple times, and twice she has taken her medicine improperly as a result. She also left the water running in the kitchen yesterday. For how long, we aren't sure. Obviously, pills go to our hands not hers. She isn't cooking, just microwaving what we cook. But is this the starts of dementia? or is she just depressed and dispondant. She tells me daily that she wants to die. I don't know what to do for her other than be there.

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Your grandma definitely needs around the clock care. You may consider taking a family leave absence from work to do so, put her into a nursing home, gather relatives together to come up with a care plan for her, or quit your work to give her the care she needs.

Best to you!
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I guess I am "lucky" in that My fiance and I both work...and we are just starting to see the need for her to have increased care. She spent her radiation time in a rehab so that helped alot. But she is home now. It's harder for him to handle than me becuase it is his gma. And being a guy, he just doesn't handle the intimate stuff so well. Heck, he doesn't handle medical stuff well. I have offered to quit my job to care for her but it hasn't come to that, yet. We shall see.
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I wish it could be easier. Sometimes there is little we can do except be there for them and see that her needs are met. I hope that you are able to get away some to keep yourself up. It is so painful to watch our elders sit and fade away.
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Backstory might help- she was diagnosed in Feb with CHF and Rectal Cancer. She did 6 weeks of radiation and finally came home. Now that she is home, it's been a waiting game. She isn't herself. She's always been a bit anti-social. She has a history of anxiety so she is medicated for that.....it's just getting worse. She doesn't want to DO anything. The only reason she is doing a puzzle is becuase we help her with it. that seems to be the only things she likes. She's miserable...and we hate seeing her miserable. Only time will tell I guess.
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Good morning, hev. It may be that your gma is getting old and her mind is not working as well as it used to. I've often heard that if people get old enough that there will be some dementia that sets in. What we can hope is that the mind holds out as long as the body does. It sounds like you are taking good care of her.

It isn't unusual for older people to get depressed as the losses add up in their lives and they see the end is coming soon. Sometimes medications help. Sometimes the best we can do is let them know they are secure and loved, that they are not walking the path alone. It sounds like that is what you are doing.

Depending on your gma's personality, sometimes being lighthearted helps. Perhaps if she doesn't want to die today, she might prefer helping make a batch of cookies or going out to eat. It is hard to know what to do when they are despondent, though. Sometimes the best we can do is, as you wrote, be there as she grapples with what is going on.
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