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Caring for Mum who is in denial and doesn't accept carers help

Fletch

Registered User
Apr 7, 2015
6
Hi I'm looking for any advice on how to convince my Mum to accept help from the carer who comes in the morning. She refuses to go out for walks or to cafes and the most stressful thing for us is seeing her in the same clothes every day, they are dirty and she does not shower or wash her hair, and when you question her about it she lies and says she just had a shower!!
I try so hard to get her to change clothes or wash but she just says I will do it later
It's getting so frustrating
 

marionq

Registered User
Apr 24, 2013
6,117
Scotland
I think you have to be blunt and tell her she is going to have shower or you cannot visit because of the state of her. if you need a wee bribe then set up coffee and cake for after the shower and hair wash. I was way to easy with my mother over these things and she frankly smelled.
 

Essie

Registered User
Feb 11, 2015
563
Hi Fletch, Would Mum be wise to little white lies? Could you say that the carer is in training and that Mum would be helping with that by letting her wash/shower her and take her out to places?

I have seen some say 'nobody ever died of not washing' but there does come a time when lack of hygiene does present health problems and also that someone just isn't pleasant to be around so we do have to be sensible about how long a refusal to be clean is tolerated as much as we don't want to upset the person involved.

If Mum is still at the stage where she would know that the 'training' angle was a ruse then, as others on here will tell you, sometimes you just have to be firm and insist that 'another' shower is taken as the last one she had clearly didn't work very well! Make it nice for her - or get the carer to, with lovely clean clothes ready to put on and nice perfumed shower gel or soap - and whip the dirty clothes away as soon as they are off so they are out of sight come dressing time. And a cup of tea and a biscuit in front of the telly afterwards will hopefully make it a routine that she will at least tolerate if not completely enjoy.
 

Fletch

Registered User
Apr 7, 2015
6
I have tried to be firm but it never worked as she insists she had a shower the night before, I even have taken her into the bathroom to point out the shower has never been used for weeks!! I tried saying if you don't have a shower you can't go out shopping but she just replies I had a shower!! even carers can't get her to have one

Today I pretended she spilt something on her top and went to get new top to change into but as usual she just said I don't want to change this and will do it later!! Her reply to everything is I will do it later!! :(
 
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Essie

Registered User
Feb 11, 2015
563
Unfortunately you're trying to use logic "look, the shower's dry, you haven't used it" on someone who just isn't capable of that anymore. There maybe many different reasons why your Mum doesn't want too shower anymore - it is a common trait for dementia sufferers - she might be scared of the whole process, it might be too 'busy' for her and make her more confused or any other weird and wonderful idea that is now your Mum's version of logic.

Do you think the 'LWL's idea of saying that Mum is helping with training the carer would work? Rather than 'you need this help' which draws attention to Mum's inabilities you could say that it's a new government scheme for everybody over 65/75/85 that they get help each day now and she's helping train people by letting them shower and dress her.
 

Fletch

Registered User
Apr 7, 2015
6
Thanks I will try the carer is in training idea but it's very draining and I'm worried if this continues Social Work will get involved and take over, she also has a dog and he doesn't get out if it's rainy windy cold, etc.... And quite often I find he has wet or poo'd in the house, the other week I had to rip up her carpet as it was just stinking, she doesn't even smell bad smells, like this of of food which is worrying!
 

BR_ANA

Registered User
Jun 27, 2012
1,079
Brazil
That was same of mine, she lost the sense of smell.
About the dog. It can be trained to wet and poo on a newspaper or on a fe terminated place ( easy to clean)