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Feel like bringing MH home

Pusskins

Registered User
Jun 6, 2020
100
New Zealand
I know I can't bring MH home, but honestly, I think I could do a better job than they're doing in the CH. MH is not eating much at all and it has finally occurred to me it's because with dementia, MH has kind of reverted to childhood and won't eat standard fare anymore. When he was at home, all I could get him to eat was stir fried rice, spring rolls, fish and chips, mini mince pies and omelettes, and noodles, but at least he was eating 3 meals a day. Of course in the CH they're not going to pander to him especially. Whereas you'd think they had a duty of care, it seems they're happy to let him starve to death. He is getting Complan each day or something similar, but I feel so helpless and distraught. If I could visit every second day things might be better, but I can't. Even when I'm over this virus, I will be struggling to visit twice a week, but am determined to do that much at least.
 

Louise7

Registered User
Mar 25, 2016
2,578
@Pusskins You mentioned in another thread that your husband has a virus, and is refusing to eat/drink, so it could be the virus that is causing the problem. The care home should be doing what they can to meet his dietary requirements but giving him Complan or similar if he won't eat/drink is the right thing to do. Does the home know about his favourite foods? That is usually something which is asked when a new resident moves in, and any specific dietary requirements should be noted on the care plan. In mum's home they always have a couple of choices at each mealtime but are happy to provide other things like omelettes if that's what the resident wants/prefers. One of the residents was insistent on only takeaway chicken & chips but the staff have persevered and he will now accept other types of food, although they also get him chicken & chips from a local takeaway once a week. It's really hard not being able to visit, but hopefully your husband will start eating/drinking more once he has recovered from his virus. In the meantime maybe having a chat with the manager to raise your concerns about him not eating/drinking and let them know what he likes to eat, if you haven't already done so, may help?
 
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canary

Registered User
Feb 25, 2014
13,894
South coast
@Pusskins - when dementia reaches the advanced stage the appetite declines and it becomes harder and harder to get them to eat. It was obviously starting while he was still at home and Im wondering whether this further decline is, in fact, simply part of the dementia. The virus may have caused a temporary blip and he returns to eating proper meals, but alternatively, it may be that the virus has progressed the disease. The care home is not leaving him to starve because he is getting liquid food which will be nutritionally balanced and this is something that happens to many people with dementia when they are not able to eat anything else.

Eventually, at the end, the body starts shutting down slowly, over days, weeks or even months and eventually they stop eating and drinking all together as part of this process. Many people think that their relative is starving to death and if they could only get them to eat again all would be well, but it is not so.
 

Pusskins

Registered User
Jun 6, 2020
100
New Zealand
@Louise7 To be honest I can't remember if they asked me what he liked eating, but something makes me think they probably did. I am going to have to follow this up with somebody as soon as I can get rid of this dratted virus. Upon phoning the CH tonight, I find he ate sausage rolls for tea, had a drink of Complan and ate a sandwich for supper. The sausage rolls kind of proves my point that he will eat, but only the foods he prefers. The Complan was supplied by me and I had to ring and nag them to give it to him when for days they kept telling me he wouldn't eat. Now they are telling me that the menu is about to change (summer coming). This will be even worse as he hates cold meals and salads. :( Yes, he is a picky eater, and has never been a big eater, but the dementia has made him worse, mainly with his choice of foods. I am already supplying the CH with the drinks he prefers and can see that I'm going to have to provide his food as well. Having lost his pension, I can see I will soon be in mortgage territory.

Every time I ring the CH, I talk to somebody different and the left hand doesn't seem to know what the right hand is doing, messages never get passed on etc etc. I will ask the woman at reception who I should be talking to regarding MH's food requirements.
 

JohnGroban

Registered User
Oct 28, 2020
70
@Pusskins
I don't know if this helps in any single way, but I realized these past days that I need to take out of my mind the idea they are not taking care of them like they should because we are comparing them to ourselves and how we would.

We know every single thing about them, how they like potatoes, how they want their coffee to the exact limit. Those people, are strangers, at the end of the day, but I hope in my heart that they do this not for the money, but because they have kindness in them and they want to help the elderly.

Taking them home is not a solution. As hard as it is, many of us are not prepared to that, to take care of them in every single way possible and I know that our loved ones, deep inside, they know this is for their best and our best also.

My sincere hugs and good thoughts. I am sending towards you all the good vibes from across the globe.
Stay strong.
 

Louise7

Registered User
Mar 25, 2016
2,578
Every time I ring the CH, I talk to somebody different and the left hand doesn't seem to know what the right hand is doing, messages never get passed on etc etc. I will ask the woman at reception who I should be talking to regarding MH's food requirements.
I've had similar problems in contacting the right person to speak to but now either speak to the manager in person (not possible at the moment due to the covid restrictions) or email them directly. You shouldn't need to provide Complan for your husband, and the home must be used to the eating habits of those with dementia (it's not uncommon to be picky) so ask for his specific dietary requirements to be included within his care plan. I can appreciate what a worry this is for you. Luckily mum has always had a good appetite and eats everything she's given but I still worry about whether she is eating/drinking OK now that I can't visit her, and send some 'treats' in regularly. Not so easy for you though due to the distance :( It's good that your husband has been eating something though, and hopefully you will be able to speak to the right person and be able to visit again soon when you are clear of the virus. Perhaps they can provide you with a copy of their new summer menu and you can highlight what he will or won't eat from it?
 

Wildflowerlady

Registered User
Sep 30, 2019
258
Just to say my dad is still in his own home and lives alone but likely to go into a CH soon as carers are struggling with providing his care.
Dads appetite has changed in last couple of months he still eats a cooked breakfast that sister goes round to do him but refuses to eat a meal at any other time of day. Dad has had a couple of occasions like yesterday when he wants a repeat of his breakfast as sometimes he forgets he had it.
Dad often just eats a portion of trifle and a cake on his lunch or teatime call. Dad will drink a small glass of the richer Jersey/Guernsey milk a couple of times a day. We have accepted dad just doesn't want to eat as much as he used to and he gets angry if asked too many times by care if he wants a dinner at lunch call.
I understand that feeling being that at home care for PWD is best but sister and I can't look after our dad full time so looks like CH is next way forward as the care company have given notice and will cease their services in around 3 weeks. I hope things improve for your OH soon.
 

Pusskins

Registered User
Jun 6, 2020
100
New Zealand
I've had similar problems in contacting the right person to speak to but now either speak to the manager in person (not possible at the moment due to the covid restrictions) or email them directly. You shouldn't need to provide Complan for your husband, and the home must be used to the eating habits of those with dementia (it's not uncommon to be picky) so ask for his specific dietary requirements to be included within his care plan. I can appreciate what a worry this is for you. Luckily mum has always had a good appetite and eats everything she's given but I still worry about whether she is eating/drinking OK now that I can't visit her, and send some 'treats' in regularly. Not so easy for you though due to the distance :( It's good that your husband has been eating something though, and hopefully you will be able to speak to the right person and be able to visit again soon when you are clear of the virus. Perhaps they can provide you with a copy of their new summer menu and you can highlight what he will or won't eat from it?
@Louise7 That's very good advice. Thank you.