This is my first post on Eldery Parents if anyone can read my post and add some pearls of wisdom for me?(10 Posts)
Here goes (trying to be brief)
We've reached a stage where my DMums health is a huge worry.
I live 8 hours drive away , DBro is 4 hours drive, DSis in NZ.
Christmas saw DSil and I with DMum in A&E ( Ambulance was sent by 111) with a cracked rib after a fall - her 2nd in that week) and very HBP .
She doesn;t seem to take on board the huge risks of her BP, doesn't take her tablets. (Possibly due to the side effects)
She told me she had none (which I thought was irregular given the HBP) but she did , at her house, just not taking.
She won't have any help (lives with my DDad but his health though good enough would suffer with my DMum health)
House is untidy though TBH, it has always been.
So - how do I go about tidying and more importantly, getting rid of alot of it.
How do I go about getting her to take her medication and understand WHY she needs to.
A year or so ago, I sat with her and did a "timeline" of when she had the symptoms, what started, what side effects, rough dates etc.
I wrote it all and gave it to her.
I asked her if she had given it to her GP, she said "Oh, no, I lost it" but never told me.
She omits things, hides the truth about her health and never gives a straight answer.
She had a fall a while ago, the conversation was:
"My knee is sore"
"Have you injured it"
"No, I haven't, I had a fall in XYZ house"
"Did you fall on your knee"
"No, on my hip"
"It's my left knee that is sore"
"Did you fall on your left hip"
"OK, did you fall on your right hip"
"I think so"
"Have you got a bruise"
"Yes on my right hip"
"Have you had an XRay"
"I fell against a wooden floorboard"
You get the picture? All that was needed was "I was in Maggies kitchen and I fell on my right side. Now my left knee hurts"
Instead its like pulling teeth.
And if I ask "Did your Dr give you tablets" she said
"Oh my Dr is lovely"
So I need to go back there when I get get time off work. I need to clear out some junk and maybe - maybe they'll allow homecare and bathing care
And I need to get it through her head that she risks a stroke, heart attack or kidney damage if she doesn't address her health.
(None smoker/non drinker/no dementia as far as I can acertain)
Hi 70, thanks for all the support you've given me on Small Pets this year, guinea girls send their best for the New Year. From what you've said your mum is losing the ability to take care of herself, and this could in time impact on Ddad. Thuggish must be a university when you're so far away. How old are they? Has she always been as vague as you describe? Can you discuss this with db so you're not dealing with it alone? Perhaps a long weekend to broach/act on the clutter to reduce falling risk and then go with her to a doctor's appointment to discuss the timeline of symptoms and a plan to deal with bp issues? Not sure how it works but if the surgery has the whole picture perhaps they could help with appropriate support. Do they have younger friends who could pop in and keep in touch with you?
Aargh, auto correct. This must be a huge worry....
There's no-one nearby really, all their friends at Church are older/same age.
I just spoke to my DDad , she's taking her meds and seems to be more mobile indoors, main worry for me is her very high blood pressure which hopefully she'll make an effort now to control after our A&E visit.
She couldn't get into our bath to shower (after she fell) but she finds her bath at home easier (I gave them the bath rail I'd bought for home )
I'm going up end of January to suss things out .................
I'll be back here to have an online grizzle for sure
And my DBro/DSil do more than I do because they're nearer, and both drive.
My DH doesn't drive so I have an 8 hour jpurney
Could you contact age uk for some local support/ advice? Is there anyone else your fm would listen to- at church etc? Often care people are better at persuasion and get listened to more than family!
Often small steps is the way to go. Good luck
Maybe you could write to her GP outlining your concerns. Say you know they can't disclose anything to you (they can t unless you have power of attorney for health and welfare, or unless she has agreed to it in writing/ verbally at the GPs) , but you have the following concerns: then make a list of the things you have observed that you feel could be jeopardising her health.
You could also make an appointment in her name, and just attend it yourself to let the GP know all this and ask them what could be done.
If the house is more than untidy and you feel it really presents a health risk, maybe take pictures on a smartphone and take along to GP with you/ forward to social services. At the end of the day i think it is also about feeling reasonably comfortable that you are doing what you can, but not being engulfed by your parents' problems. Be sure to have some boundaries because the stress that comes with vulnerable elderly parents can be considerable. Post here again if you need to.
I agree with Bob about writing to her GP. Make sure you note about the number of falls that your DM has had as this may trigger a visit from the falls prevention team who may have more success in getting your dp to declutter (as professionals get listened to more), and may provide bath rails etc.
Has your mum always not given a straight answer or is this a new behaviour?
1. You install a lockable meds box on the wall and carers go in once a day to administer them and generally keep an eye. They usually come in a uniform and can be renamed "nurses" that give meds if that is more acceptable.
2. You wait for the catastrophic accident/injury that forces the situation above.
I would have liked to have done 1. but ended up doing 2. first then 1. it was messy.
I wrote on the envelope of her Discharge Letter (from A&E)
"2 falls in the space of 4 days. Ask for a referall to Falls Prevention" but I don't know what has happened there (the letter was given to the GP)
The GP did a Home Visit so they are aware what the house is like.
My DDad now makes sure she takes her tablets (he was really worried when she was in A&E, I left him in my house rather than take him, I didn't think the stress would do him any favours)
I am going up in 4 weeks, I think my DMum MIGHT allow someone in if the house is tidier (they have been offered before, they refused)
My DSiL has done loads but she feels sometimes she might be over stepping.
My DMum has always been untidy.
She's also a hoarder. Buys loads of things she doesn't need and cannot bear to see people throw things out. It's a bit of a family joke really that if we tried to throw out clothes etc she'd rescue them "someone in the Church will take them" but they'd end up in the corner of my room.
So I'd say "I;m throwing out these jeans, shall I just lob them into the corner, save time?"
We weren't allowed friends round because the house was messy. If I tidied , it was "You only tidy if you want people round"
If I did it , the house was just as messy the next day.. or I'd be blamed for something being thrown out... and do it twice , it;s my job.
"Why haven't you cleaned the kitchen?"?
"Eh, since when was that my job?"
I threw out a huge amount of her nick nacks a few years ago (clocks. She had 240 of them. I threw out 80).
So , it;s something I need to tackle but it's not a case of "I can't do the tidy up, can you help me"
It's a huge part of the problem, but i can't go in like a bulldozer.
I think the evasiveness has always been there, she doesn't give a straight answer.
I think I need to contact her GP as her concerned daughter. I'm also a HCP so I see both sides of the fence but it's more difficult when I;m directly involved.
I've done similar for patients, they need to give consent to contact their GP but sometimes I've had to go with my instincy and report to the GP in strict confidence
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