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Does my father need to go into a home now?

Discussion in 'I care for a person with dementia' started by Putters, Nov 11, 2015.

  1. Putters

    Putters Registered User

    Nov 11, 2015
    6
    Hi, my father has mixed dementia and I am his next of kin. I have two brothers but live abroad.

    My father has now started to lock himself out of his house and also left the front door open. He calls me to see where mum is but we lost her in 2006 to cancer and now asking if I have seen my brothers, even though they are not around. He has left the front door open one day he went out. I have got him carers that go in twice a day to give medication. He really believes he was going to be taken back to where he grew up to live.

    Is it time for him to be in a home?

    Would love some comments please.
    Thanks
     
  2. fizzie

    fizzie Registered User

    Jul 20, 2011
    2,731
    My Mum lived close to us (3 mins) and she went through phases of leaving the front door open. I think it is quite easily done. Going from twice a day to pop in for meds to a care home is quite a big jump without trying other things first, depends on his wishes too. I don't necessarily think it is a good reason for a home because that depends on so many other things.

    Is he well supported or does he just have someone 2 x a day? Depending on what he wants to do there are quite a lot of options before you need to go to a care home.

    We also had a front door lock which meant that you can't lock yourself out, you have to lock it with a key, the disadvantage of that is that you have to remember to lock it when you go in and at night but i did all that for her every day and night.

    Day care is great for stopping the boredom - lunch club, social services day care community centre, we even had a specific day run by a drama therapist for those with mild to moderate dementia. All had transport provided.

    Do you live close by? How does he manage at night? If he is left alone all day every day then he is likely to get bored and wander.

    How does he manage his shopping, meals, washing? There are so many considerations. Such a difficult question to answer without knowing more about his circumstances. sorry not to be more help but do post more info if you would like some more help
     
  3. Tin

    Tin Registered User

    May 18, 2014
    4,815
    UK
    Hello Putters, I think that leaving front door open and locking himself out is compromising his safety and that for me is a big sign that a dementia sufferer should not be left alone. How did you find out about the door issue? Are his neighbours looking out for him?
     
  4. Putters

    Putters Registered User

    Nov 11, 2015
    6
    Hi, I get shopping for Dad and feel the freeze, looks like he is not eating properly. He has Age UK for cleaning and help with washing, thank you for your reply. I live 45 minutes from him and has people from his church around.
     
  5. Putters

    Putters Registered User

    Nov 11, 2015
    6
    Hi Tin, it was somebody from the church Dad goes to, they keep an eye out for him as well. Just don't know what to do really.
     
  6. fizzie

    fizzie Registered User

    Jul 20, 2011
    2,731
    Can you get him booked into day care or a lunch club - at least that way he would have a decent meal each day and some company
     
  7. Shedrech

    Shedrech Volunteer Moderator

    Dec 15, 2012
    8,088
    Yorkshire
    Hi Putters
    Welcome to TP - have a good mooch round as there's lots of information and experience here.
    I always wonder when posters ask this question what it is particularly that has prompted it - as it's not a situation that most carers want to face, we're a lot happier to try to keep someone in their own home for as long as possible. So the fact that you are asking is, to me pretty telling.
    For me, it was dad disappearing from his house in the middle of the night - so I appreciate your concern.
    I wonder if you could go and stay with your father for a few days, to see for yourself just how he is. Be careful, though, when you go; don't immediately do everything for him, as the idea is to see how he is coping. And you will see how he is during the night, which you won't discover otherwise.
    You may then decide having more home care visits and some day care etc will be enough to support him - or you may confirm that he needs much more supervision.
    Best wishes to you both.
     
  8. Putters

    Putters Registered User

    Nov 11, 2015
    6
    He does not want to go to a day care, might have a look at lunch club.
     
  9. Putters

    Putters Registered User

    Nov 11, 2015
    6
    Hi, I really don't want to put him in a home and want to keep him in his own home. Just worried he might go out and forget where he is.
     
  10. Beate

    Beate Registered User

    May 21, 2014
    11,745
    Female
    London
    You might not have any other option if he lives alone, wanders and doesn't agree to day care. You can obtain trackers and door alarms but you must weigh up whether this is enough. Get a needs assessment from social services, they ought to tell you what's available in services and through telecare and an OT. Tell them they "have a duty of care to a vulnerable adult at risk".
     
  11. Shedrech

    Shedrech Volunteer Moderator

    Dec 15, 2012
    8,088
    Yorkshire
    Hi again Putters
    Beate has a point, or two!
    It would be great for your father to stay at home, however not at the price of his safety.
    I suggested you go to stay with him as there may be so much going on that you are not aware of, and you need to be fully up to speed to make the best decision for him. I was with my dad during the day and knew he was not completely settled at night, but when I stayed with him for a few nights I was amazed at what was happening. I couldn't believe I hadn't noticed. And winter will soon be here, not a good season to be wandering or locked out or leaving doors open.
    You really do need an up to date, realistic assessment of his needs.
     
  12. BR_ANA

    BR_ANA Registered User

    Jun 27, 2012
    1,082
    Brazil
    I would focus on what your father best interest is, not on that you want.

    I am sorry but it seems he needs more care than he is having. Maybe gps tracker, maybe more visits to feed him, ( or 24/7 care). At his home or on CH.
     
  13. Witzend

    Witzend Registered User

    Aug 29, 2007
    4,289
    SW London
    I think the time has come when:

    The person is no longer safe to be left alone for even short periods
    and/or
    Carers coming in however often is no longer enough/family carers can no longer cope, simply don't have enough time to give or are utterly exhausted with it all.

    From experience, many of us know deep down that the time has come, but because it's such a massive and often irrevocable step, and we know the person will not want to go (who ever does?) we put it off and put it off until some sort of crisis means we can't put it off any longer.

    The trouble with waiting for a crisis - I might add that I'm a fine one to talk since this is exactly what we did with my mother - is that when finding a care home you are happy with has become an urgent necessity, ten to one the one you like best will not have a room available.

    It's always such a momentous and agonising decision, and so hard to make, even when you know in your heart that it's time, or even that it's been time for a while.
     
  14. Bessieb

    Bessieb Registered User

    Jun 2, 2014
    108
    It sounds like the time for a CH might be coming...even if you decide it's not quite yet and can put in some additional home care for now.
    I would start to look around at CH options asap and I think this will put your mind at rest a little when you have a plan in mind for when the time is right. It might be a crisis that sparks this or you might find somewhere where you actually think he'll settle into well and be happy.
    I wouldn't wait until the crisis comes to look. I would do it now so you can get your head round where he will be and what the plan will be.
     
  15. Callandergirl

    Callandergirl Registered User

    Apr 23, 2013
    96
    Is he ready for a home?

    I've posted previously about my husband's wandering and drinking. We've managed to stop the drinking which shows he can make good decisions when it really matters. He's now on Trazodone twice daily to try to cut down the wandering, but although the compulsion is still there, it's not quite so urgent.

    However, he has frontotemporal dementia and typically his memory has been maintained until the last year. Yesterday though he went to the wrong street and the wrong house to speak to our daughter who moved to the street behind us in July. She has 2 very young children and will be going back to work in April for 3 days per week. I want to look after the children for 2 of these days. My oh wants nothing to do with the children. They stress him out, but oh won't go to any clubs which have been offered, he won't accept a carer coming in and even if they were here for a few hours he'd be off out again on the bus as soon as they were gone.

    Last night, yet again, we drew up a timetable for the day and as usual he's reneged again and he's off on his bus journeys. He won't read during the day, he loves music but won't listen to it and won't sit long enough to concentrate on a tv programme or DVD - again between the hours of 9am and 6pm.

    My daughter is devastated at his reaction to the children and she is now on medication for extreme anxiety. She's also worrying about the childcare when she goes back to work. Her husband is already stressed out at work and about to start shift work.

    His behaviour is affecting the entire family now and I have lived with his condition for almost 7 years, 5 of those before diagnosis. I am emotionally numb.

    Opinions much appreciated.
     
  16. Putters

    Putters Registered User

    Nov 11, 2015
    6
    Hi Bessieb. I have spoken to the dementia people today and they advise me to get more help in the evening, so they can give him his food and make sure he eats it. I have also requested a list of the care homes again. I will have a look and then I have an idea, so when it does come to it, if necessary then I will be much more clued up.
     
  17. Bessieb

    Bessieb Registered User

    Jun 2, 2014
    108
    I hope things start to feel a bit more supported Putters.
    When I looked at a few care homes I was actually really reassured - and the CH my parents are now in I thought 'yeah this could work, I think they would actually like this' when I visited. I hope this happens for you too - at least you will feel like you have a plan if the additional care isn't enough at some point.
     
  18. chrisdee

    chrisdee Registered User

    Nov 23, 2014
    171
    Yorkshire
    #18 chrisdee, Nov 13, 2015
    Last edited: Nov 13, 2015
    Hi, I must say I feel very concerned that dementia is now affecting the entire family
    especially your daughter/children/husband, not to say yourself! Frankly, I would say its time. Everyone has their lives to live and I think these extreme sacrifices are way beyond the call of duty.
    Its terribly upsetting to face up to the fact that things will only get worse. You have done enough,
    IMO.
     
  19. Witzend

    Witzend Registered User

    Aug 29, 2007
    4,289
    SW London
    Must say I would second all that. Please don't feel you MUST go on, or that it's selfish to want a normal life back for yourself and your family. You have done so much more than a good many.
     
  20. Callandergirl

    Callandergirl Registered User

    Apr 23, 2013
    96
    Thank you Witzend.
     

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