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Recent diagnosia

Discussion in 'Recently diagnosed and early stages of dementia' started by Jmasc, Jan 10, 2017.

  1. Jmasc

    Jmasc Registered User

    Jan 10, 2017
    H, I have just joined this forum as we are going through a dementia diagnosis for my 76 year old dad. We have not been told what type as we are waiting for an appointment with the consultant later in the month. Dad lives in a big house on his own but his condition has really deteriorated in the last 6 months. He has had his driving license revoked as we were concerned as he was getting lost. We have managed to get power of attorney sorted before the condition got too bad as we realised he was struggling. We have a carer that drives dad to town each day to see friends and helps with cleaning. His confusion is getting worse. His short term memory is very poor and he is now struggling with telling the time and making plans. We are conscious that dad is struggling in the house he is in and needs to be within walking distance from town as he is needing company more and more and becomes agitated when he is home on his own. There is a lovely apartment available to buy in town with a 24 hour warden which would be ideal for dad. We are in a position to buy it for him and provide care for him. He would also be nearer to me and my brother. The problem we have is how to explain to dad that moving is the best for him. Does anybody have any experience of moving a dementia sufferer to a new home and how to approach it. Any help and advice swould be very gratefully received as this is all so new.
  2. Cat27

    Cat27 Volunteer Moderator

    Feb 27, 2015
    Welcome to TP :)

    Moving can really disorientated people with dementia. There have been several threads about it.
    Good luck.
  3. Pickles53

    Pickles53 Registered User

    Feb 25, 2014
    Radcliffe on Trent
    While it's undoubtedly true that moving can be disorienting, it's also true that the risks of living in unsuitable places plus the responsibility of having to effectively run two homes (for the carer) may mean it's worth taking.

    Trouble is, nobody can predict how things will go and for how long the apartment would be suitable. We looked at extra care supported places for my mum but eventually concluded that it wasn't a sensible financial choice to commit to buying somewhere unless we could be confident it would work for several years. Events proved us right and while we were still looking she had a crisis which resulted in her going directly to a care home where she was far safer.

    If you're going to buy somewhere, especially with your own money, I'd think very carefully about what you would do with the apartment if your dad's situation meant he could no longer live there after a relatively short time.
  4. Grannie G

    Grannie G Volunteer Moderator

    Apr 3, 2006
    My husband moved house with me pre diagnosis and even then it posed a problem for him. He was unable to find anything, was constantly opening cupboards and drawers and was very unhappy.

    I agree with the comments from Pickcles and Cat.

    Sadly your dad has a progressive condition and even a 24/7 warden and a good care package will not provide the company and supervision he will need.

    My mother went to day care Monday to Friday and still needed attention morning and evening and at the weekend.

    My husband had an excellent care package of three hours daily but I was still alone with him 21 hours each day.

    Think very carefully about a change which is likely to be only temporary.
  5. Jmasc

    Jmasc Registered User

    Jan 10, 2017
    Thank you for all your responses. I have mixed feelings about the move. Financially it's not an issue and the apartments move quickly and it's a sound investment as well as a purchase for Dad. He still enjoys walking into town, meeting friends for coffee and lunch and being busy. However, he is very forgetful and can get confused easily. He does not yet need any personal care and our hope is that in a smaller more manageable space some of the stress of losing items, checking doors and windows will lessen. I find it incredible that as a family we are just bowing left to deal with this with no advice or help. Potentially making huge decisions for Dad that we have no expertise to make. I'm finding it incredibly frustrating as it is taking all my head space and I'm trying to work full time and raise my kids! Care homes are definitely in my thoughts but as he owns a house we can only look or private Ones and they all have waiting lists that we have no control over. So hard to know what to do for the best.
  6. john51

    john51 Registered User

    I have dementia although I don't think I'm as far along the dementia journey as you describe for your dad.

    As I read about a possible move I had a cold shiver. My anxiety level rose and I could feel confusion kicking in.

    I get panicky when we go to stay in a hotel. My wife plans it really carefully and we try to stay in the same chain which has similar rooms in each.

    Before the move is finalised make sure you know how your dad will respond.

    sent from my mobile
  7. Jmasc

    Jmasc Registered User

    Jan 10, 2017
    Thank you. I do worry how he will respond but living in his own in a big house seems to make him anxious. He has lived there for 12 years and 10 of those on his own since he and my mum divorced. There are no happy memories there and he is constantly losing things and thinking other people have moved them. Still thinking long and hard
    about the move although Dad cannot carry on as he is but I am unsure he is ready for a CH.
  8. Chinoise

    Chinoise Registered User

    Jan 10, 2017
    My mum is similar - a recent diagnosis but now seemingly so unable to cope. She does not want to move home although we did look at assisted and non-assisted retirement homes in the summer.
    Have you shown your dad the new apartment and asked him what he thinks?

    My sister doesn't want my mum to move if she doesn't want to so I have to leave the suggestion, as it looks like I am being bullying and unreasonable. At least you and your brother are both in agreement on what is best for your dad.

    I think the earlier people move the better, and although I understand people's concerns, I also really appreciate your concern over your dad staying where he is.
    It is not easy and there isn't that much help, and we are all so different that it makes decisions very personal.
    Good luck.
  9. Oh Knickers

    Oh Knickers Registered User

    Nov 19, 2016


    Mother fought tooth and nail and did not want to move. Her dementia was less advanced than your father's. However, since moving into her her Extra Assisted Living she is content. Not a word I would ever have used for her. The wheels are coming off the bus now. She does not cook as she tried and was leaving the hob on all night - so it was a safety issue. The hob and oven have both been disconnected.

    Mother is managing as she has care in every morning for breakfast, tablets, and reminders to wash. Any place that is Assisted or Extra Assisted just means there is a restaurant on site. That saves the worrying over whether she is eating. She is enjoying the company.

    The Extra Assisted Living just means extra staff to keep an eye open. They have been very good and have alerted us to concerns over mother. It helps to have their insight. If they are worried we know we need to do something.

    It sounds as though your father is not managing at home. He is not likely to manage where you move him. However, with the right care in place, the routine does help PWDs. It is the fundamental issue that he is likely to be safer in teh appartment you have found him - with the right care package in place.

    If you have concerns about getting him out Age Concern have befrienders who could take him on walks or drive him out for tea. They try to match the interests of the PWD with the befriender.

    Good luck
  10. Trisha4

    Trisha4 Registered User

    Jan 16, 2014
    I think the most important thing to consider is how long this apartment would be suitable for your Dad's condition. It would be worth finding out how much the warden will do for residents and at what stage your Dad would be required to leave the apartment. Sadly dementia does not stand still.

    Sent from my iPad using Talking Point
  11. PurpleGlitter

    PurpleGlitter Registered User

    Jan 29, 2017
    Similar question for me too

    Hi, yes I had a similar question myself. My dad has just been diagnosed with Alzheimer's. He struggles with quite a lot of things and mum has to help him a lot with things like getting dressed (he's putting his jumper on backwards etc) and finding things around the place. He's struggling to find the right words quite a lot.

    They are talking about downsizing from their big semi detached house where they've lived for nearly 40 years, and moving to somewhere warden controlled.
    On the one hand I can see real benefits - no stairs to contend with, a smaller place for my mum to have to manage etc. However moving might just make dad more disorientated and worsen his problems. I'm sure there are adaptations we could make to the house and help we can get.

    Interested in hearing other people's experiences on this. I realise it's different for everybody! My brother is definitely on the side of keeping them where they are, my sister thinks they will be better moving, and I can see both sides! I'd love a professional opinion.
  12. Shedrech

    Shedrech Volunteer Host

    Dec 15, 2012
    #12 Shedrech, Jan 29, 2017
    Last edited: Jan 29, 2017
    hello denise
    a warm welcome to TP
    it's good that you and your siblings are concerned for your parents and looking out for them
    seems to me, though, that it's up to your mum where the 2 of them live, after all she's his wife, and now his carer - so if your mum feels that she will cope better with her husband in a smaller home, that's her decision - it may be that she will be happier in herself to know that, should your father need to move into a care home, or die, she will be living somewhere she can manage herself and has settled in
    it will certainly be easier on them both if all you children help them with the move - maybe do all the organising and the physical stuff, so your mum is able to give your dad her full attention - it may be confusing for your dad, it's up to your mum to weigh up what may be and the immediate benefits to her; to be honest, he may well become confused in the home he's lived in all this time, my dad did - if your mum wants to move, probably best to do it asap so that they both do have a chance to settle as it's so soon after his diagnosis
    just to say, TP is a peer support community, so none of us are professionals as such; we do though have a great deal of individual and collective experience
    best wishes to all your family
  13. PurpleGlitter

    PurpleGlitter Registered User

    Jan 29, 2017
    Thanks Shedrech. That's a helpful viewpoint indeed. I certainly had the thought that keeping them where they are may still be confusing for dad if we ultimately have to alter the place to make it safe. Might be better to do something sooner rather than later.

    Chatting to my siblings tonight about it all so we'll discuss the options. There's probably no right or wrong answer!

  14. Trisha4

    Trisha4 Registered User

    Jan 16, 2014
    I moved with my husband about 18 months ago to a more suitable house in a more suitable location for our changed circumstances. I decided to move while I thought my husband would realise he had moved and would settle in a new place. The move itself was hard work as everything fell to me, the paperwork, finances and the physical moving. But he has settled here and knows it as home. He doesn't talk about our previous homes at all. He has deteriorated mentally, not physically, in the last 6 or 7 months so I'm glad the move is behind us. I was also asked by friends if this is where I'd want to live alone if (or when) we reach the stage when I can no longer look after Mick at home. It made me think and I can say it is. I am currently getting quotes for changing his bedroom ensuite into a wet room to make things easier. Hope things work out for your parents.

    Sent from my iPad using Talking Point
  15. PurpleGlitter

    PurpleGlitter Registered User

    Jan 29, 2017

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