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We moved our dad into memory care 3 weeks ago and he is having a lot of difficulty. Our mom visits every day along with another family member. Dad is having trouble sleeping and has become combative much of the time.

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I don't think there is an average time. It's all individual. When we first moved my Mom into her nursing home we were allowed to decorate it. I put a lot of thought into what items to take. She had been in a rehab facility for a bit where she shared a room with five others so I think she expected that would be the case here. So when she entered her nursing home room for the first time with all her familiar stuff, her own private bathroom and a door she could close to the outside world the relief on her face was magical. It still breaks my heart to this day when I picture it. She was beaming. Of course that didn't last long. Maybe a couple of weeks.

Then, a year later they rebuilt the facility. It was all fancy, dancy. They fired all the nurses my Mom had gotten to know and like. She wasn't allowed any personal stuff in her room. It was a sterile, cold facility. I wasn't able to be with her when they brought her there for the first night and when I went to visit her the next day she was so upset. I asked the nurse on charge about it and she said Mom had walked up and down the halls saying my daughter won't be able to find me. Oh, if I could have changed some things. Sigh................my Mom died three months later. I often wonder if she had just stayed where she was who knows. It's the second guessing and the what- ifs that kill you when you are a caregiver. I always say, when you are a caregiver, live in the moment. Otherwise, you'll drive yourself insane.
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My mom had to go to a memory care unit towards the end of September and it was very hard on both of us. I was going every day to see her and after a couple of weeks she wasn't doing any better at all. I asked her case manager and she advised that I stay away for a few days or even a week, so that my mom could totally adjust, instead of depending on me for her needs. It was tough but I stayed away and when I returned my mom was a totally different person. She's a bit shy but this forced her to depend on the staff and make new friends.

I'm so happy that I listened to the case manager. Everyone is different though, so you may want to talk with your dad's case manager.
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allisonf, did the Memory Care facility suggest any time frame for not visiting Dad while he is settling in? It seems like 2 to 3 weeks of none relative/friends visits is the average amount of time. It gives Dad time to settle in.

Moving, no matter what age or stage of life illness wise, will be difficult. There are new inside and outside noises to learn.... the sunlight may come in his room at a different time then before.... he will have new neighbors... new Staff personnel to learn... the food will taste different... to learn the floor plan of his floor... and when he wakes up in the middle of the night his bedroom is different, thus I tried to get my Dad's Memory Care bedroom area similar to what he had before in his home.

I read not to buy a new bedspread, but for Dad to use the bedspread he had at home... Mom can buy a new one for herself.  So when he wakes up, the bedspread will look familiar.

As Barb and Glad had mentioned above, your Dad may need a change in his medications.
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Allison, the transition from home to facility is very difficult for everyone and will, most likely, cause a decline. My mom always wanted to remain in her home, but it just wasn't possible for many reasons. Shortly after the move my mom was taken to a geriatric care hospital where her meds were tweaked to find a combo that would help her feel more comfortable. Following that mom did a bit better for awhile. It was a constant effort to adjust her meds. Mom never did truly adjust, she had some days that were better than others but most were very difficult. She ended up being kicked out of the facility almost a year ago. Mom was on hospice at the time. They recommended a very nice care home, less institutionalized appearance, and all 12 residents had been kicked out of their previous facilities. Can you imagine? The carers had specialised training in dealing with agitation. Remarkably it worked quite well for my mom. She passed on June 1 this year after four months at the new place. Wish we had known about it sooner.
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Allison, this can be SO very painful; I'm sorry that your family is having this issue.

Where did you move dad from? Regular AL? Home? Rehab?

Have you spoken to his doctor, or the doctor at the facility about his sleep issues and his combativeness? Has he been tested for a Urinary Tract Infection? Has he been seen by a Geriatric Psychiatrist before this?
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