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Caring for elderly relatives? Supercarers can help

Carers

Struggling to care for elderly parent

11 replies

MummyLE · 05/04/2021 19:25

I've also put this in the 'elderly parents' thread as I didn't know which one would be best.

This might be a long one but I'm hoping to get some advice for my mum.

My Nan had a stroke around a month ago and hasn't been great at all since she left hospital. She has daily hallucinations and irrational thoughts (she has said several times that she thinks that her family are going to kill her - no violence ever so I don't understand why she thinks this).

She was originally staying with my parents but my mum moved back to my Nan's house with her after a few days to hope the confusion would stop but it hasn't. Most days, at night time, she is convinced she is not staying in her own home. The other day she thought she was staying in a pub and is still convinced this is where she stayed.

Basically, my mum works FT (at home at the moment) but is also living at my Nan's. This is having an impact on her relationship with my dad as they never see each other and also my mums health (she has also previously had a stroke although not as bad as my nans). I try to help where I can and have stayed a few nights but I live an hour away and I'm 32 weeks pregnant. My mum has no other siblings so it's all left to her.

Has anyone else had any experience with parents have a stroke? Did you have to stay 24/7 or did you just go around for meal times, etc?

Nan seems to be fine in general during the day and so I keep telling my mum she should pull back a little and leave her for an hour and gradually build it up and let carers do more. Does anyone have any suggestions for dealing with this? Thanks!

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Totallyworthit · 05/04/2021 20:23

My DGM was convinced she wasn’t in her own home after being discharged from hospital, has your Nan been checked for a UTI & had blood tests for things like vitamin D deficiency, B12 & thyroid? What she is suffering could be coincidental to her stroke or, if she’s on any medication, maybe a side effect?
I wrote to DGM’s GP & they arranged blood test and urinalysis. Her thyroid meds needed adjusting and she needed 2 lots of antibiotics for a UTI before she was more her old self.

It is a good suggestion about your mum having time out and having carers round.

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MummyLE · 05/04/2021 20:29

@Totallyworthit thanks for replying. We had a nurse round the other day who tested for a UTI and found nothing wrong. She also had her bloods taken and we have to ring the GP tomorrow to get the results. They did all this before she left the hospital though so I can't see it pulling up anything unusual!

I'm going over tomorrow to give my mum a break.
Once my Nan is in bed, she is fine. Even if she gets up on the middle of the night, she goes to the toilet fine and goes straight back to bed (this is even on the days where she is very irritable and argumentative about her not being in her own home).

I have suggested to my mum to leave my Nan once she is in bed and go back home for the night and back to my Nan's in morning. Given that we have no issues at night with her, would you leave her alone at night or not?

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Totallyworthit · 06/04/2021 08:44

It depends on what bloods they took at hospital tbh, they may not cover the ones that would be taken for confusion/memory loss so it is worth checking with the dr if they included TFT, B12/folate & Vit D just to be sure.

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Totallyworthit · 06/04/2021 08:46

Only you can decide if it’s ok to leave her at night though really - it’s a tough one, sorry your family are going through this Flowers

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BunnyRuddington · 10/04/2021 08:32

Does her GP know that she has delirium @MummyLE? If you or your DM has POA it's worth speaking to the GP, she may need it properly investigating, if it hasn't been already.

Was she assessed fir her care needs before she left hospital? If your DM has volunteered to do all of her care, it might be worth speaking to the GP and saying that as she has had a Stroke herself and is working full time, your DGM needs a new care assessment. I've found it's usually best to give them a date to work towards as well, otherwise you can end up at the bottom of a very long "to do" list.

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BunnyRuddington · 15/04/2021 09:52

How are things now @MummyLE ?

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MummyLE · 15/04/2021 10:22

@BunnyRuddington

How are things now *@MummyLE* ?

So sorry I must have missed your last message, thanks for checking in though!

Not much improvement to be honest! We have managed to get an extra Carer to visit my Nan during the day but that's only for 20 mins or so.

As for the GP, they have been absolutely useless. We have explained the hallucinations and delusions and they don't seem to be doing anything about it. We tried to call this week to be hold the GP is off this week and they won't let us speak to anyone else.

The stroke team have basically said that they don't think my Nan will ever get back to her normal self but she might improve. Physically she is doing a little better, but mentally, not great!

We have tried to start leaving her for a few hours at a time (especially while the carers are there so they don't assume we are happy to take up a FT caring role) and we have a camera set up. It's very difficult seeing that she is clearly having hallucinations sometimes.

I guess we will just have to wait for the carers to refer the case to social services and see what they advise!
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BunnyRuddington · 15/04/2021 22:23

I wouldn’t wait for the Carer’s to report anything, things may deteriorate before that happens.

Have you spoken to the SW yourself? It sounds as though she needs reassessing fur her care needs and your DM needs a Carer’s Assessment.

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BunnyRuddington · 15/04/2021 22:39

If you call or email The Stroke Association they might be able to tell you how to get the best care for you DGM.

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MummyLE · 16/04/2021 07:58

@BunnyRuddington

I wouldn’t wait for the Carer’s to report anything, things may deteriorate before that happens.

Have you spoken to the SW yourself? It sounds as though she needs reassessing fur her care needs and your DM needs a Carer’s Assessment.

Just a quick update that my Nan is back in hospital.

She had a really bad day yesterday. My mum had been up to visit her and only left her on her own for 20 minutes before the next Carer was due to arrive. Carer found her hysterical and banging on next doors window demanding her neighbour to tell the Carer that she isn't in her own home when she was.

They advised my mum to ring 111 who asked her to go to out of hours to test for yet another UTI. Whilst there, at one point Nan didn't even recognise my
Mum so refused to send her home as she was. She sent them over to A&E where doctors found Nan's kidneys were not working properly so admitted to her to hospital. They're also going to investigate the confusion while she is in.

My Nan is terrified of hospitals but I'm just glad they're finally taking this seriously now. Carers are also going to refer her case to the social workers as they think it's out of their hands.

Thanks for your support! Thanks
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BunnyRuddington · 16/04/2021 11:20

So sorry that things aren’t getting better but at least it sounds like she’s being examined properly and is going to receive some help.

I’d talk to your DM now about when the time for discharge comes. It sounds as though being there for your DGM 24 hours is just too much and I would push fir a proper assessment of her care needs.

It might be worth reading reviews and reassessments if your local care homes now, so that you have a better idea of which ones you’d be happy with if she was assessed as needing full time care.

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