1. Expert Q&A: Benefits - Weds 23 October, 3-4pm

    Our next expert Q&A will be on the topic of benefits. It will be hosted by Lauren from our Knowledge Services team. She'll be answering your questions on Wednesday 23 October between 3-4pm.

    You can either post your question >here< or email them to us at talkingpoint@alzheimers.org.uk and we'll be happy to ask them on your behalf.

  1. little shettie

    little shettie Registered User

    Nov 10, 2009
    219
    My 94 mum has AZ and lives with myself and hubby. Since we moved her last summer, her short term memory has declined considerably. She sometimes wakes up and says where am I! Now we have managed to get a care package and carers come in to get mum showered mon-fri and also pop in for a tea call a bit later, mainly to check on her as I work part time and hubby full time. My question is, I have been offered some respite care for mum if we want it, but I'm deeply concerned that this would worsen mums condition. I know she would hate going into the home to begin with as she has always maintained that care homes for elderly people who sit around in chairs sleeping all day!! And of course, thinks there's nothing wrong with her and is capable of staying at home alone. has anyone got experience with respite, and did it make a huge difference to their mental state? All advice welcomed! :)
     
  2. mancmum

    mancmum Registered User

    Feb 6, 2012
    388
    I think the answer is: you don't know until you have tried. My father went to a memory cafe with my mother when she was alive and they stopped going because he didn't like it. He went to one with me last week and is clearly enjoying himself.

    After looking after him for 2 years. He has zero short term memory. He went into respite for a week. It was hard to tell what happened when he was there as my sister never got to speak to him as he was always eating or doing something. In his wallet when he came back I found 3 bits of paper with his room number on and another two with the times of all possible engagements with food written down.

    They did take him out for a walk every day.

    We got him into the car to bring him home and within 10 minutes he had forgotten he had been there. He still has no memory of every having been there.

    He has always expressed a horror of being somewhere where they all sit round the edge of the room and watch TV, but he survived, and we were able to be in our own house on our own which has not happened before.

    We did lie and tell him we were going on holiday.

    But we really needed to see what happened because who knows when there might be an emergency and he has to go into somewhere. He was a little agitated on going. Asked repeatedly if his shaver had been packed. He had a calendar to tick of the days until we got back from holiday.

    They were unable to get him to shower but for a week I suppose that was bearable for the other residents.

    Go for it. If of course you can find it. I am unable to book respite in advance and unsuprisingly my husband has to give more than two days notice for a holiday. See the Fight for Respite post.
     
  3. magic800

    magic800 Registered User

    Dec 11, 2014
    17
    I have had a couple of experiences with respite. My Aunt who is 85 has been in on two occasions both recommended by her GP. 1st time was a disaster for both of us she wanted to come home kept taking her clothes out of the wardrobe when I visited would not come out of her room to mix with others or to have her meals I cried every time I left her but I needed the break and she needed to be assessed for pain management due to having cancer as well as dementia. 2nd time following a nasty fall her GP advised it because she seems to be unaware of the falls (she lives alone) so again needed further monitoring she was fine and enjoyed her stay (apart from the fact that she cannot have a cigarette).
    My mother in law who is 90 loves it we are lucky to have found a home near too where she lives that is excellent they get patients dressed bring them into a large sitting room with large TV it has a nice large dinning area with tables for 6 people they have activities the staff are lovely with everyone no matter how severe their illness is mother in law thinks she is in Blackpool when she goes there.
    I think a lot depends on the person going into respite my Aunt is a very friendly but quiet lady with a lovely sense of humour, mother in law loves to be the centre of attention.
    More important though is you will benefit having some time for yourself, good luck.
     
  4. chelsea girl

    chelsea girl Registered User

    Jan 25, 2015
    139
    My mum has been in respite twice now. She always refused to do anything but social services told me its more about my needs and we needed the break. We take mum in and the staff understand and take her for a cuppa while we deposit her bags and medicine etc. We dont visit while shes there because it would make her think she was coming home. She normally goes for a week at a time and if she asks we tell her shes going on a short holiday. Once mum is back home things settle back into the same routine very quickly with no long term effects. Hope this helps, you need a break to have some normality, even for a short while, take the respite and enjoy the rest xx
     
  5. little shettie

    little shettie Registered User

    Nov 10, 2009
    219
    Thank you everyone for responding. Trouble with my mum is she hates anywhere new, becomes very agitated if she thinks I'm not going to be going with her and I just worry about her pining! I know I need a break and I just need to get my head around it. :confused:
     

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