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I am a 57 year old son who lives back at home with his father 92, and mother 85, My father suffers with dementia and my mother has a pace maker and has a hard time just getting around. I am afraid something mite happen and I wont know what to do. I need to know how to get some type of training. Money is short so paying to go back to school at this time would be hard, any suggestions.

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Olmaandme I like your response. I am too fairly new to caregiving, my husband abs I took mom into live with us 8 long months ago! She has deteriorated physically and mentally since she has been here. Currently undergoing neurological workup for diagnoses. I am exhausted!! She is mean, selfish, narcissistic and wants to be waited on all the time. I have rheumatoid arthritis, lupus and fibromyalgia, so I have bad days too, and her attitude increases my stress level immensely. I am also going to try and reach out to the local agency on aging, as I have seen that recommended on this site often. Wonderful being able to vent. Thank you!!
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Call Adult Protective Services and tell them the situation. Get in your car and leave as soon as you are, freed by protective services to do so. It's that simple. If you can't afford to do that OMG save every cent to get out later.
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For the new Caregiver:
Change is upsetting and routine is comforting.
A reassuring tone of voice no matter what happens is always your best coarse of action.
When things go missing (and they will),look in their drawers and closets first.If they insists it belongs to them and it doesn't ask to borrow it or let them keep it unless it's sharp.They aren't always nice to the caregiver.
Expect the unexpected.Some will lash out physically.
Learn to "duck and weave". Practice in your spare time.
Never argue with them as you will not win.
Try to remember that people with dementia are aging backwards.Mid life crisis, rebellious teens, terrible two's then infancy.
Vicks under the nose for nasty jobs, latex gloves by the carton and plenty of lysol .
Everyone is different, you learn by doing, it's best not to know ahead of time what you might be in for as it's too scary for most to think about until you are a seasoned veteran.
Maintain a sense a humor at all costs.It will get through when all else fails.
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Alzheimer's Association here has a class called Savvy Caregiver that is quite good. Also check out Teepa Snow a well known caregiver that has numerous videos on YouTube.
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Forgot to add something else....

For dementia, contact your local Alzheimer's Assn. and ask if they present the Creating Confident Caregiver's course. It's a free 6 week course and is excellent. I would highly recommend it if it's available in your area.
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Does your mother use a walker? Are the paths in the house clear so that she can navigate safely? If not, focus on those.

You can also add grab bars in areas where there's nothing for her to hold onto, and especially in the bathroom.

For your mother, concentrate on improving mobility safety. If you can get a script from one of her doctors for in-home PT to help with balance, do so.

For both of their medical conditions:

Prepare a medical history which you can take with you or show to EMS if needed. It should include their names, DOB and other personal data as well as Medicare and any supplemental insurance policy numbers. Also include a list of their meds and allergies and/or reactions to any meds. In the history I prepared for my parents, I also included any significant events such as stroke, heart attack, existing conditions, treating physicans and their contact numbers.

I carry the history with me in a 3 ring 1/2" notebook with copies of Dad's DPOA and Living Will. It's always ready in case I need that information.

Some hospitals offer free CPR courses; check with those in your area.

Probably the best approach you can take is become as knowledgeable as you can about their conditions, recognize danger signs as well as those Pam cited, and call EMS if you feel it appropriate.
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There are many useful videos on youtube for what to do. Your nearest nursing home will also have support groups. So will the county office of the aging. If you like to read, check amazon or your nearest bookstore. Basically, if there is trouble breathing , bleeding, or heartbeating, call 911. If they fall and can't get up on their own, and you don't know how to check for broken bones, you call 911 and be safe instead of sorry.
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