Expectations from a care home ( 2 years In)

Discussion in 'I care for a person with dementia' started by Sunflower100, Sep 15, 2019.

  1. Sunflower100

    Sunflower100 New member

    Sep 15, 2019
    3
    Hi everybody I’m new here so very sorry if I’m posting a thread that has been covered before ( had a brief look but couldn’t
    See anything!)

    Both my parents have Dementia of different types and stages but it’s my mums care home that’s concerning me at the moment.

    She has been there for about 2 years after being cared for at home by my dad ( and me) until his own diagnosis. We have had lots of problems with the home over the years including sorting out how they manage mums Continance and making sure her personal belongings are accessible ( she had a habit of packing a bag every day!) which they have eventually sorted. These solutions were with the help of a new manager at the home who was obviously keen to please.

    With out waffling on (!) the issue now is that Mum is constantly without her hearing aids and/or glasses and/or clean pads or sometimes all 3. There is also a problem with other residents entering her room and removing her belongings ( her glasses went missing last week and have not been found) I’ve addressed this on numerous occasions with the staff and section manager and with the homes management but it keeps happening.

    My dilemma now is that mum is actually pretty happy at the home, she no longer packs to leave every day, she is ‘contentedly demented’ and is not at odds with any of the other residents despite their challenging behaviour. Do I now follow up a more formal complaint about the issues mentioned above ( surely she can’t be properly engaged or stimulated without her sensory devises?) or should I just let it lie considering the fact she is generally content?

    Any advice greatly appreciated.

    S100 x
     
  2. Nigel_2172

    Nigel_2172 Registered User

    Aug 8, 2017
    17
    Shropshire
    We have had similar problems with my wife with people (one in particular) entering her room and removing items or even getting into the bed and sleeping! With my wife being completely immobile without assistance and also being unable to speak at all, it all became very difficult so I asked whether the management would have any objection to the installation of a child's safety gate in the doorway which addresses the problem. The idea has been taken up and there are now about half a dozen rooms with such a gate. Ironically, the person causing the problem is no longer there.
     
  3. Sunflower100

    Sunflower100 New member

    Sep 15, 2019
    3
    Thanks Nigel. That’s a good idea which might just work as mum
    Doesn’t leave her room, except with a carer. I’m 100% fed up
    Of mums things going missing and also finding a random selection of things in her drawers/wardrobe too!
     
  4. Rosserk

    Rosserk Registered User

    Jul 9, 2019
    315
    What a brilliant idea! I will be asking about one for my father who has the same issues mentioned thank you!!
     
  5. Rosserk

    Rosserk Registered User

    Jul 9, 2019
    315

    I made a complaint at my fathers care home which was a complete waste of time, made me feel bad alienated the staff and didn’t make a shred of difference! If your mum seems happy I’d let it go. The stair gate sounds like a brilliant idea and may solve at least some of the problems. X
     
  6. canary

    canary Registered User

    Feb 25, 2014
    10,712
    Female
    South coast
    Make sure that everything is named. People with dementia have very fluid notions of ownership. Mum would often leave things around, only for them to be picked up by one of the other residents who have taken a shine to it. I remember taking mum out for coffee and before we set off she said "I must put my cardigan on" and picked up the cardigan which was draped over the arm of the chair she was sitting in. It was only once we got back that I realised that the cardigan was not hers. Mum was a devil for taking off her glasses and hearing aids and just leaving them somewhere and I once found her false teeth wrapping in toilet paper in her bin. Good job I checked there!

    As you can see, mums things did go missing, but because everything was named, if I alerted staff to the fact that it was missing it almost always got returned. I think that the only things that were never found were a pair of trousers and a top.
     
  7. Nigel_2172

    Nigel_2172 Registered User

    Aug 8, 2017
    17
    Shropshire
    That is essential. From very early on, it was clear that without having names on everything, it was very difficult to keep track of belongings. The home automatically put name tags on anything that passes through the laundry but I found that the right name did not always get onto the right person's clothes! Also, they put the resident's room number on the name tag which was a help - until my wife moved to a different room where she ended up with a drawer full of a former resident's clothes! The residents families group has now got a scheme running to supply a variety of name tags suitable for most items.
     
  8. canary

    canary Registered User

    Feb 25, 2014
    10,712
    Female
    South coast
    Its not just clothing either - I put name tags on shoes, her walking stick, glasses, hearing aids, cuddly toys, knick-knacks, pictures/photos, vase, bedspread. Basically, if it belonged to her it was named.
     
  9. Sunflower100

    Sunflower100 New member

    Sep 15, 2019
    3
    Thanks all for taking the time to reply. The problem with the hearing aids is that they are not always being given to her in the morning (they put them in the office for safe keeping over night) . There is supposedly a book to sign them out and in but the staff the other day knew nothing about it. At the moment I’m Only visiting once a week as dad has been in a bad phase so if things are not right on the one day I go I can only assume she regularly Doesn’t have her things.

    There are many things I can let go about her care, her teeth are awful but shes never liked brushing them and her clothes are often unkempt but I would really like this hearing aid and glasses situation sorted.

    Rosserk....I feel the same, the times I have complained ( informally) I’ve felt worse and I know the staff despise me. A new manager on the ward appeared to be sorting things out and we had a good relationship but after yeasterdays visit with the social worker ( doing mums annual review) where I expressed my concerns and asked about how to make a complaint she cooled towards me.

    Still don’t know what to do for the best
     
  10. Grannie G

    Grannie G Volunteer Moderator

    Apr 3, 2006
    69,704
    Kent
    I think our expectations that care home provide the dedicated individual care our people get from their own family in their own homes is a tad unrealistic.

    I never worried about clothes. My priority was my husband should be kept clean, fed and contented.

    Hearing aids and glasses are more important if they are still of benefit to the person with dementia as is footwear if the person with dementia is still mobile.

    I know my mother wandered into other rooms and other residents wandered into hers. She was unaware of what was in her room or even that it was her room.

    This is so important. It`s the most important condition of residential care.

    These comments are just my opinion and they may well differ to the opinions of others. I do think it might help to consider whether we are upset because of our own reactions or because what upsets us is detrimental to the well being of our people with dementia.

    I think the suggestion of childproof gates in doorways is excellent.
     
  11. Rosserk

    Rosserk Registered User

    Jul 9, 2019
    315

    I have to agree with everything you’ve said, though it took me a long time to realise it. As you say we want our loved ones treated as though they were not living with dementia and we tell ourselves those things are important to them when they actually aren’t. My father will sit happily wearing a pair of glasses which are so dirty he can’t possibly see through them. Is he better with them or without? He seems equally content either way x
     
  12. Grannie G

    Grannie G Volunteer Moderator

    Apr 3, 2006
    69,704
    Kent
    This is all that matters. :)
     

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