SHANDY Registered User

    Jan 24, 2007
    hi, went to the home to see mom last night in the nursing home, and have been told they have put moms mattress on the floor now as they have found her on the floor in her room twice this week. i know they have to stop her falling out of bed, but has anyone else heard of this happening as it doesn't seem right somehow.


  2. DeborahBlythe

    DeborahBlythe Registered User

    Dec 1, 2006
    #2 DeborahBlythe, Feb 2, 2007
    Last edited: Feb 2, 2007
    Hello Shandy,
    In my mum's last home they refused to use the cot sides because they said that there is well known evidence that people can hurt themselves more by trying to get out over the cotsides than by falling out of bed. Also there was a case where someone's relative managed to trap their arms between the side of the bed and the mattress and hurt themselves. So for my mum, they put extra duvets on the floor so that if she fell from the bed she would have a 'soft landing'. They were supposed to monitor her frequently, of course, but you need a bit of a leap of faith to believe this happens rigorously.

    There is also an issue about whether the use of cotsides is an appropriate use of restraint i.e whether the resident/patient has given consent to be restrained in this way ( if they are capable of giving consent).

    In her present home there is no room to spread duvets or cushioning around, but my mum is practically immobile now anyway. When she was admitted they made me sign a disclaimer to say that I was aware of any risks of using the cotsides etc etc. And so she has some low cotsides which are really more for our peace of mind.

    However, there are other residents who do actually sleep on the floor on a mattress so I guess this practice is becoming widespread. I guess that if the resident rolls off the mattress on the floor they will do themselves only minor harm, if any, and the nurses do not have to worry whether they have checked so rigorously. Why not speak to the home and question whether there is a better alternative, but be aware that this may be the best option at the moment. Ask too how often they check on your mum.

    Kind regards Deborah
  3. Amy

    Amy Registered User

    Jan 4, 2006
    Hiya Shandy,
    I am sure that I have heard someone mention it - was it you Bruce?
    Sounds to me the sensible thing to do. Bed rails can cause a bigger problem, as mum may climb over the top, and so fall from a greater height. Or sometimes people get their legs caught between the bed and the rail, and damage themselves that way. Mum will be fine on a mattress - if she rolls, she won't hurt herself.
    Love Helen
  4. Brucie

    Brucie Registered User

    Jan 31, 2004
    near London
    Yes, for quite a long time, the only place Jan could safely sleep was on the floor, so her room was made entirely of mattresses, including up the walls - to prevent injury due to crawling and hitting things with her head.

    Later, we sourced a fantastic bed with high rails - an adult cot in effect. That has proved fantastic - but then Jan was by then past the stage of being able to try and climb out.

    During the day, a room has been kitted out as a soft room and she also sleeps there [see picture]

    Attached Files:

  5. Grannie G

    Grannie G Volunteer Moderator

    Apr 3, 2006
    Dear Bruce, What a heartbreaking yet peaceful photo. Sylvia x

    SHANDY Registered User

    Jan 24, 2007
    thanks for your replys

    your advice has been invaluable, maybe it's me being overcaring about mom, can't help it sometimes, this disease is truly horendous, i hate seeing mom like this, life is so cruel.

    many thanks to you all

  7. Skye

    Skye Registered User

    Aug 29, 2006
    SW Scotland
    Dear Bruce

    What a lovely photo of Jan. She looks so comfortable. It's heartbreaking for you, but at least you have the comfort of knowing how well cared for she is.

    Love to you all,
  8. Grannie G

    Grannie G Volunteer Moderator

    Apr 3, 2006
    Hi Shandy, When my mother began falling out of bed, even though it was a low divan, she got carpet burns on her face and arms. The NH put a quilt on the floor to cushion her fall. Eventually she ended up sleeping on the floor most of the night. To my mind it was the most logical solution.
    I hope you will be able to accept this, it`s just one more way of coping.
    Love Sylvia x
  9. Brucie

    Brucie Registered User

    Jan 31, 2004
    near London
    Dementia turns the whole world topsy-turvey.

    What I have learned is that, if it works for Jan to improve her condition, no matter how bizarre it may seem - then it is the right thing to do.
  10. Jillian

    Jillian Registered User

    Dec 26, 2006
    I understand

    Hi Bruce

    My mum has alzheimers and one moment, I can't do enough for her, the next, I dread the phone going. What a nasty position to find oneself in. I read your reply regarding feeling guilty about not being able to do enough. I wanted to say all that you said and found that I didn't reply because you had said exactly what I wanted to say.

    My mum, just this last couple of days, seems to be losing any will at all. Doesn't want to eat, not really interested in anything at all. Likes to see me but a problem to hook onto what I'm saying for any longer than a few seconds. She tries very hard at it though.

    I feel that it is months rather than years now, but of course, who knows? My son is in New York, brother abroad too, and it is so difficult to know when to call them to come over hear.

    I guess that time will tell me.

    I do feel for you. Who's answering your problems. I know it's very cathartic being in touch with others in similar positions. That's what we're all doing on here. In a strange way, it's good to be with people of like minds.

    Thinking of both you and your wife. Take care of you, though.

    All the best

  11. Brucie

    Brucie Registered User

    Jan 31, 2004
    near London
    Hi Jillian

    I recognise that so well!

    worth checking there are no other problems - bladder infection of something. Because they can't tell us exactly what is up, sometimes it is something other than the dementia that is affecting them.
    Hmmm this is familiar territory. There have been many times in the past 5 years when I have felt that about Jan. Yesterday the nurse told me how well Jan is looking, and she is correct in that - relatively speaking. When close relations are geographically not that close, it makes life very difficult. In my experience of others at Jan's home, there will generally be 2-3 day's notice of impending crisis - usually there is an infection and pneumonia sets in.
    Yes, I believe that is the best tactic.
    To be quite honest, nobody can, but things can be made a little easier - as you say, being in contact with people of like minds is helpful.
    Thanks! To quote Swayze in the film "Ghost" : "ditto"

    Best wishes
  12. Lila13

    Lila13 Registered User

    Feb 24, 2006
    We had no warning at all. But ... some deaths are like that.


  13. nikita

    nikita Registered User

    Jul 31, 2004
    grans nursing home also put her on a matress on the floor it was much better than seeing her with a battered and bruised face every week and since she only used her bedroom for sleeping it didnt matter

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