Dementia care in Spain

(16 Posts)
Lorigeri Thu 19-Nov-20 18:00:05

Hello. Some background. My dad is 78 and has Multiple Myeloma cancer. He was doing really well with Chemotherapy until he got Cellulitis in his leg. The drs stopped the Chemo and he spent 2 weeks in hospital with poor kidney and liver function, I think due to the Cellulitis. It’s been 2 months and his leg is very, very slowly getting better and 1 week ago he started a half Chemo treatment. He’s on a lot of pain medications, including patches but is still in pain because of the Myeloma.

His blood tests 2 weeks ago were good, apart from iron anaemia and high cholesterol. He’s now on iron injections.

He’s been a bit forgetful for a couple of years but over the last month has got worse. He often doesn’t know where he is and can’t remember if he’s eaten. He sits in a chair and screams and sobs. He has conversations with people that aren’t there, and keeps asking when we’re leaving to go home.

In many ways healthcare in Spain is fantastic but the family is expected to do all the caring. There’s only me and mum, she is coping better than I am but can’t continue like this without help.

The dr looking after his Myeloma says he could have 10 more years.

Thanks for listening.

OP’s posts: |
Magicsprinkles Sat 21-Nov-20 07:30:43

Hi lorigeri just wanted to offer a hug. This sounds awful. I’m sorry, I Don’t have any practical advice tho. My mum is is spain with dementia that’s getting worse . Luckily my bro is able to get out there and stay with her but he is getting resentful and feeling trapped. And I’m anxious as I can’t help. This doesn’t help you really, but might be nice to chat 💐 I guess it would be important for you both to look after yourselves and fit in nice treats. And other activities.

QuentinInQuarantino Sat 21-Nov-20 07:40:41

Which part of Spain are you? I'm in the north west and here it's really common to employ a kind of nanny for elderly care. My cleaner does it part time. I also have two friends who work in "residencias" (care homes), and in Valencia a lovely elderly gent I knew went to an English residencia, so they do exist.

I feel for you, my grandparents loved in with my parents when my grandads dementia started and it was absolutely grueling for them all. They were researching live in care before he passed. thanks

Lorigeri Sun 22-Nov-20 17:42:43

Magicsprinkles

Hi lorigeri just wanted to offer a hug. This sounds awful. I’m sorry, I Don’t have any practical advice tho. My mum is is spain with dementia that’s getting worse . Luckily my bro is able to get out there and stay with her but he is getting resentful and feeling trapped. And I’m anxious as I can’t help. This doesn’t help you really, but might be nice to chat 💐 I guess it would be important for you both to look after yourselves and fit in nice treats. And other activities.

Thank you. I’m sorry about your mum. Living with dad is difficult but there are 2 of us so we can have breaks. Even mundane things like vacuuming are tricky, mum does it when I take dad to the drs as it’s too difficult with dad there.

OP’s posts: |
Lorigeri Sun 22-Nov-20 17:55:42

QuentinInQuarantino

Which part of Spain are you? I'm in the north west and here it's really common to employ a kind of nanny for elderly care. My cleaner does it part time. I also have two friends who work in "residencias" (care homes), and in Valencia a lovely elderly gent I knew went to an English residencia, so they do exist.

I feel for you, my grandparents loved in with my parents when my grandads dementia started and it was absolutely grueling for them all. They were researching live in care before he passed. thanks

Thanks you. I’m sorry you lost your grandad in such horrible circumstances.

We’re in Andalucia, in the mountains. It’s lovely but we’re very isolated and there aren’t any care homes within an hour. They don’t have district nurses apparently, I don’t know what happens with bed-bound people.

I am wondering if dad’s dementia is a medical thing caused by all his medications. He has periods where he seems so much more lucid, though very repetitive. He’s much nicer to me than to my mum and I can’t help think that’s a choice he’s making, to be so horrible to her, that shows he’s capable of some thinking.

OP’s posts: |
OrangeBlossomsinthesun Mon 28-Dec-20 15:59:48

I live in Andalucía and my MIL seems to have Alzheimers now. She lives alone but round the corner from us. We've just applied under the ley de dependencia through servicios sociales in the village and it will apparently take a min of a year for her case to be looked at and funding allocated. I took her to the GP today for an assessment and the Gp is referrring her to neurology, who will diagnose Alzheimers I imagine.
If she needs residencial or other care before funding is awarded social services told us to go to them and they can help find out what is available and how to access it, although we'd have to fund it.

Lorigeri Mon 04-Jan-21 18:23:02

OrangeBlossomsinthesun

I live in Andalucía and my MIL seems to have Alzheimers now. She lives alone but round the corner from us. We've just applied under the ley de dependencia through servicios sociales in the village and it will apparently take a min of a year for her case to be looked at and funding allocated. I took her to the GP today for an assessment and the Gp is referrring her to neurology, who will diagnose Alzheimers I imagine.
If she needs residencial or other care before funding is awarded social services told us to go to them and they can help find out what is available and how to access it, although we'd have to fund it.

I’m sorry about your MIL. Before we moved to Spain we knew that health care was done a bit differently, but this feels like abandonment.

OP’s posts: |

Advertisement

OrangeBlossomsinthesun Mon 04-Jan-21 18:30:18

It's the first time I have been involved with dementia care so maybe I am mistaken but that's what servicios sociales told us. I don't know what happened before the ley de la dependencia tbh. We're just hoping she can manage without residential care for another year or so so that when she needs it she gets a subsidized place. She has some savings but her pension is only 650 a month so she'd be using at least that again from savings every month, so it wouldn't last very long at all.

MimosaFields Mon 04-Jan-21 18:38:47

I would get an "asistenta" for a few hours a day to give your mum some respite. When servicios sociales finally looks at his case, you'll have to keep in mind that the residencias are spanish speaking places. Is your dad fluent? Will he be happy with other residents who don't speak English?

Lorigeri Mon 11-Jan-21 18:58:53

OrangeBlossomsinthesun

It's the first time I have been involved with dementia care so maybe I am mistaken but that's what servicios sociales told us. I don't know what happened before the ley de la dependencia tbh. We're just hoping she can manage without residential care for another year or so so that when she needs it she gets a subsidized place. She has some savings but her pension is only 650 a month so she'd be using at least that again from savings every month, so it wouldn't last very long at all.

I wonder what happens when the money runs out.

Being responsible for all the medications is worrying too. Could one/ both of us be prosecuted when he dies?

OP’s posts: |
Lorigeri Mon 11-Jan-21 19:06:22

MimosaFields

I would get an "asistenta" for a few hours a day to give your mum some respite. When servicios sociales finally looks at his case, you'll have to keep in mind that the residencias are spanish speaking places. Is your dad fluent? Will he be happy with other residents who don't speak English?

He has practically no Spanish, any he did know he’s forgotten now.

He’s now on a urinary catheter. Was off the pain patches for 10 days but back on them today. He’s completely out of it now. Babbling on making no sense.

Mum and I are getting better with handling him, washing and meds etc. Have to watch him take the tablets or he doesn’t take them.

I’m starting to realise that he is not going to come back. I did think he was still in there, but he’s gone.

OP’s posts: |
whaa Tue 16-Feb-21 06:59:44

Sorry to hear this. Sending a hug

picknmix1984 Tue 16-Feb-21 07:14:31

Are you sure it's dementia and not underlying infection or hypoxia? It sounds like a confusion related response to me. ( I'm a nurse worked in dementia care and respiratory med).

Check his oxygen levels. Have you an oximeter or phone app?

Xiaoxiong Tue 16-Feb-21 07:41:56

My grandparents are in a mountain village in Andalucia. The lady next door in the village lives alone and has had Alzheimer's for a decade now and has had a few different live-in carers, most of them have been Ukrainian as far as I can tell but also some Moroccan. The family are involved to the extent that they come over frequently but they are all too elderly or frail themselves to handle the day to day and the younger family have moved away for jobs.

The system really isn't set up for long term elderly care without local family - there are so many old folks in the village with no help at all, I think going to the market and the jubilados for coffee and walking up and down hundreds of stairs keeps them going but it's a real problem.

Xiaoxiong Tue 16-Feb-21 07:43:07

Posted too soon - I'm so sorry about your dad thanks I hope you get some support soon.

SharpLily Tue 09-Mar-21 15:04:24

You need to contact servicios sociales. The system is overloaded but there is support available so be persistent.

Join the discussion

To comment on this thread you need to create a Mumsnet account.

Join Mumsnet

Already have a Mumsnet account? Log in