'Settling in' problems...or a new phase?


Registered User
Jul 2, 2005
West Yorkshire
Hi There, looking for advice or opinions, please....

Until recently, my Mum cared for Dad (LBD) at home, with help from my family. We could no longer cope, and a fortnights respite was arranged, which we hoped could be extended if all went well.

Things did not go too well, as he was desruptive and his night-time wanterings were too much for the staff to deal with, so we moved him to an EMI unit nearly a fortnight ago.

Since then, he has considetably deteriorated, and I don't know if this is a result of the moves, or just progression of the dementia. He can no longer hold a conversation - he sits bent over with his head on his chest, and refuses to lift it.The only time he does is to shout out incoherently. He will only drink small amounts, and his wolf-like appetite has deminished into just nibbling at things. He is doubly-incontinent, (he was fine a fortnight ago) and is refusing to wash, to clean his teeth, and, some days, refusing to dress. He seems to have sunk deeper than ever into his own world, and I'm not sure that he will ever surface again.

We are at a loss to know what to do next. The carers say that they cannot force him to dress or wash, which I fully understand, but where do we go from here? The Dr has visited, and says that really, Dad needs one-to-one care at the moment. Well, that's fine - how, exactly, do we get that?

From the wealth of experience out there - is this just a 'settling in' phase, or have we gone down a notch? I really would appreciate your views.

Thank you.

Grannie G

Volunteer Moderator
Apr 3, 2006
- is this just a 'settling in' phase, or have we gone down a notch?
I really don`t think anyone will be able to give you a precise answer, jks.

Your father could be depressed, could be becoming institutionalised or could be deteriorating.

All I can suggest is that either you or your mother spend a full day at the home, giving him the one to one care that has been recommended. If he seems better at the end of the day, you will know he does need more one to one. if not, then he is deteriorating.

Either prospect will pose more worry for you, but with dementia, there don`t seem to be any solutions.

Not much of an answer, I`m sorry. :(


Registered User
Aug 29, 2006
SW Scotland
Hi jks

It's very worrying when there's a sudden deterioration, and we're not sure what's causing it, or how to deal with it.

Is your dad on any medication? If it is the moves that have unsettled him, a short course of anti-depressants might do the trick.

It really isn't helpful of the GP to say he needs one-to-one care. You can no longer care for him at home, and the EMI unit is very unlikely to have staffing for this.

It could be that he needs to go into an assessment ward for a while to see if they can stabilise him. I'd be inclined to ring the consultant and ask for an urgent review.

Other than that, I can't think of anything else at the moment.

I do hope your dad settles, it's a terrible situation for you.



Registered User
Sep 27, 2006
I can only second Hazels suggestion that you get the Consultant in to have another look at your dad. So sorry things have gone so quickly downhill. Remember you are not to blame for any of this. It is the illness and you didn't make this happen, the illness did!! xx TinaT


Registered User
Jul 6, 2007
leigh lancashire
i have experienced this through my work with the elderley.we got the cpn involved and the client was admitted to the mental health hospital.they worked wonders and the client came back and was fine.am not saying this happens in all cases but it's worth a shot,especially when there is no particular reason for their deterioration.hope it helps elainex

Margaret W

Registered User
Apr 28, 2007
North Derbyshire

I assume they have investigated the possibility of an infection? It is a very common reason for people to become lethargic and depressed. A UTI (Urinary Tract Infection) or a chest infection (which isn't always obvious as a coughing symptom) can both cause the symptoms you describe, i.e. a change in behaviour. Do check out that he has had these investigated.

I hope you get him more comfortable soon



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