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Elderly Parents

Posted by on Aug. 3, 2014 at 6:30 AM
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Anyone here have experience taking care of elderly parents?

My mom, at 82 years old, has mild dementia, although her doctor doesn't think she does and added a 2nd BP med and an antidepressant.

My dilemma is this - mom is in denial about her condition (forgetfulness) and gets offended when my dad (81 yrs old) tries to remind her of stuff.   I'm concerned she is not always remembering to take her meds.  She's on 2 BP meds, a thyroid med, something for cholesterol and also an antidepressant.   I was there the other day and she got very defensive when I asked her about her meds and if she was remembering to take them.   Then Dad and I discovered a 2nd weekly pill box of hers in the kitchen and she got very confused about that.

I am going to start going over there on Sunday afternoons and just take over setting up her pill box - and then go over to check up on that a couple times during the week - her doc wants her to check her BP but I don't think dad is taking mom that frequently, so I think I'll take on that responsibility. 

I'm also a bit worried about her finances - she mentioned to me that she and dad went to her bank, it had $8000 in it, but now it's "all gone."  Dad is not the kind of person that would just take all her money like that.  I'm quite certain she is remembering something from the past and making it sound like it's a recent event ... so that kind of bothers me.

I hope I'm not overstepping the mother/daughter boundaries - I'm just not sure how to approach this so mom doesn't get defensive/offended by this.

any suggestions and/or ideas would be most welcome!





by on Aug. 3, 2014 at 6:30 AM
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Replies (1-10):
EireLass
by Gold Member on Aug. 3, 2014 at 7:31 AM
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Your lucky you live so close to help. And that your dad is with it still, so he can get on board with you.
I think the sunday, weekly pill thing is a great idea. Maybe buy her a new one, put a ribbon on it, and say your neighbor had one and you thought it was great, so you thought youd get her one too.
You can buy the bp cuffs at the pharmacy, pretty cheap, battery operated. I had to get one to monitor daily a few years ago. You could pick one ip then nobody has to drive anywhere to get it done.
At this point, your parents should have poa on each other, or you should have it, and that way you can checkthings for them....that could just be presented as a mmatter of course, given their age.
suzeebloch
by Ronna on Aug. 3, 2014 at 7:46 AM

thanks.  I know I am lucky to live so close!  Purchasing a BP cuff is a great idea - why didn't I think of that?  lol.

I think there is POA in place (?).  I know they both have a living will.  I plan to go over this afternoon so I'll double check with dad again.  

thanks for the suggestions! 

Quoting EireLass: Your lucky you live so close to help. And that your dad is with it still, so he can get on board with you. I think the sunday, weekly pill thing is a great idea. Maybe buy her a new one, put a ribbon on it, and say your neighbor had one and you thought it was great, so you thought youd get her one too. You can buy the bp cuffs at the pharmacy, pretty cheap, battery operated. I had to get one to monitor daily a few years ago. You could pick one ip then nobody has to drive anywhere to get it done. At this point, your parents should have poa on each other, or you should have it, and that way you can checkthings for them....that could just be presented as a mmatter of course, given their age.


valkay
by Bronze Member on Aug. 3, 2014 at 8:10 AM
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Good you are doing this. Just remember her blood pressure meds if it is a water pill needs to be takenin the morning. Cholesterol needs to taken right before bed
louannwilkins
by Louann on Aug. 3, 2014 at 8:11 AM
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I'm glad you live near them too. They're lucky to have you.  Maybe you could turn it around.  Tell her you don't feel like you do enough to help them and that it would make YOU feel better to do something for her since she's always done so much for you. Tell her you won't take no for an answer kind of thing.

Is there any type of web site that gives tips on the meds?  Maybe a dementia / alzheimers type site?  Some way so that she and you all would know for sure if the meds have been taken? 
I definitely think you need to know what's going on.  It sounds like she's not always sure.

I'd check her bank statements too and if need be go to the bank.  I hope you can get it all figured out.  Keep us posted.

Again....I think you're a good daughter and you're doing the right thing.

suzeebloch
by Ronna on Aug. 3, 2014 at 8:13 AM

I know she's said (back in days when her memory was good) that her thyroid meds have to be taken in the morning, 30 minutes before she eats.  I'll be looking at the prescription bottles for sure.  She already has a couple of 7-day pill boxes.

Quoting valkay: Good you are doing this. Just remember her blood pressure meds if it is a water pill needs to be takenin the morning. Cholesterol needs to taken right before bed


suzeebloch
by Ronna on Aug. 3, 2014 at 8:17 AM
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Yes, I'll have to use my magic powers of persuasion!  lol.  I'll be reading the prescription bottle labels for sure.  she has 2 of the 7-day pill boxes so I'll try and figure out some system to make sure. 

The weekly teleconference thing has no agenda - it's really more a way we just all "get together" and chat for an hour.  The last couple of times, I've tried to bring up forum-type questions.  lol.  It's fun - there are several volunteers from the USA, the host is in England, one guy from Saudi Arabia, one in Turkey, one in South Africa (that refuses to join but I begged him this morning) and I can't remember the rest.  :o)

Quoting louannwilkins:

I'm glad you live near them too. They're lucky to have you.  Maybe you could turn it around.  Tell her you don't feel like you do enough to help them and that it would make YOU feel better to do something for her since she's always done so much for you. Tell her you won't take no for an answer kind of thing.

Is there any type of web site that gives tips on the meds?  Maybe a dementia / alzheimers type site?  Some way so that she and you all would know for sure if the meds have been taken?  I definitely think you need to know what's going on.  It sounds like she's not always sure.

I'd check her bank statements too and if need be go to the bank.  I hope you can get it all figured out.  Keep us posted.

Again....I think you're a good daughter and you're doing the right thing.


FrankMamma
by Member on Aug. 3, 2014 at 8:34 AM

I'm sorry you're going through this. It's hard I know, I took care of my mom with heart issues. That was a long time ago. See if they won't add your name to their bank accounts just so you can keep a closer eye on things, and you can handle their finances easier in case of emergency. I'm confused as to why she needs 2 pill boxes, that may confuse her as to when she's supposed to take which meds. She may walk into the kitchen and see a pill and think she needs to take it when she's already taken the same thing from the other box. As far as getting moms cooperation, let her know it makes you feel better coming over to take care of her and it gives you the opportunity to visit in person. Be firm and don't take no for an anwer. Believe me, I wish I hadn't once, but I was only in my 20's doing what you're doing. You and your dad may want to keep a journal of her behavior patterns, strange things she says or does, how when and why she seems confused.  I would also write down what her b.p. is, including date/time if the unit you buy does not have a memory. Good Luck and God Bless all of you.

MichelleMc
by Silver Member on Aug. 3, 2014 at 10:27 AM
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Not yet. My mom takes care of everything with my dad ( about to be 79 ). He has been sick for a long time. 

Memere60
by Member on Aug. 3, 2014 at 10:41 AM

Is there any way you can get her doc to check her B12 level? I read that if you are low on that, it coul seem like you have dementia. 

Good luck with all this. I went through it with my sis in law. She wouldn't let me help her with anything, and she wouldn't do it herself. Her health got so bad, she now lives in a nursing home, and she is only 58.

atlmom2
by Susie on Aug. 3, 2014 at 10:58 AM

My MIL doesn't have any memory issues other than the normal ones a 78 year old has.  She sets up her pills in a 7 day box that has morning afternoon evening and bedtime slots for every day. 

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