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    As a carer for a person living with dementia, the needs of the person you care for will often come before your own. You may experience a range of difficult emotions and you may not have the time to do all the things you need to do. Caring can have a big impact on both your mental and physical health, as well as your overall wellbeing.

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When is the right time for a nursing home?

Discussion in 'I have a partner with dementia' started by Alex54, May 25, 2019.

  1. Alex54

    Alex54 Registered User

    Oct 15, 2018
    Newtown, Wales
    #1 Alex54, May 25, 2019
    Last edited: May 25, 2019
    I have often used phrases like:
    • When I can provide better care than a care home.
    • If the happier times outweigh the difficult times.
    • When I no longer can carry on.
    Problem is I don't think I ever agreed to a nursing home for my wife no matter how hard it gets!
  2. karaokePete

    karaokePete Registered User

    Jul 23, 2017
    N Ireland
  3. Sarahdun

    Sarahdun Registered User

    May 18, 2014
    Struggling with that decision for my OH now. I have Read the fact sheet dozens of times but ideally would have a person to talk to who understands early onset Alzheimer’s . Care homes are clearly businesses. I would like a ‘third party’ to talk to. GP’s overworked and not very clued up on dementia. No SS because self-funding. ..... friends and family suggest it is time but still .... so many issues from the emotional to the financial, let alone what is in his or my best interest.
  4. Sirena

    Sirena Registered User

    Feb 27, 2018
    I don't know if you have started the process at all. Could you start identifying a couple of care homes you think would be right, go in and talk to the manager, and ask if they will accept your PWD for a fortnight's respite? That would give you an idea of how it might work out (although of course it is likely to take longer than a fortnight for them to settle in fully). Some care homes also allow you to go in for coffee so you could go in together a few times and check it out. From initially realising my mother needed a care home it took me about four months to actually arrange it. It was a different situation because she lived alone and needed 24/7 supervision, so there wasn't really an option, but it still took me a while to get my head round the idea.
  5. canary

    canary Registered User

    Feb 25, 2014
    South coast
    TBH, if you are asking the question then I feel you should at least be looking at places.
    Many care homes have waiting lists, so if you leave it until you are on your knees then there may not be any option about where she goes.
  6. Shedrech

    Shedrech Volunteer Moderator

    Dec 15, 2012
    #6 Shedrech, May 26, 2019
    Last edited: May 26, 2019
    hi @Alex54
    I agree, if you are asking the question, it's time at least to look around and see what is available so should the time come, you aren't at the beginning of the process in the middle of a crisis
    I did find that visiting some care homes gave me a better idea of the questions to ask and what I was really looking for ... I looked around maybe a year before dad moved; it was too soon then, but I was glad I'd got a clearer picture in mind when the time came
    and some people do remain living at home, there's no one way that has to be followed

    hi @Sarahdun
    I wonder whether contacting Admiral Nurses might help
    the local nurse has been very supportive to a friend
  7. Sarahdun

    Sarahdun Registered User

    May 18, 2014
    Great idea! - unfortunately there is no admiral nurse in my region (according to the website). But there is one in the region of the care home where I am considering placing my husband - perhaps I can at least try them.
  8. Rosettastone57

    Rosettastone57 Registered User

    Oct 27, 2016
    If you're thinking about care homes,then best to start looking around now. There was no "third person " to talk to when my mother-in-law went into care. My husband and I just knew the time had come. She was living on her own and could no longer remember where the rooms were in her own home. As we were thinking about homes,she had to go into hospital in an emergency so we suddenly had to sort out something quickly. In an ideal world we would have arranged it earlier. She was self funding so we just sorted it out ourselves. She needed 24/7 supervision and we just couldn't provide it
  9. Sarahdun

    Sarahdun Registered User

    May 18, 2014
    I have been providing 24/7 support to my husband for years now because he is totally unable to look after himself - and he is still only in his 60s - my dilemma is when/whether I should stop - when does it get 'too much' for me and not 'too unkind' for him? I didn't find the decision so hard for older relatives with dementia in their 80s who I did less caring for (and care homes are mostly geared to their needs anyway). With a younger person/spouse it is a whole different kettle of fish, I am afraid.

    But yes you are right - wishing for advice and getting it are two very different things. Thank you for your realism.

    ALso - have just found a local charity that does have an Admiral Nurse - so there is hope.
  10. Guzelle

    Guzelle Registered User

    Aug 27, 2016
    My husband is 85 and I have to go into hospital and I need respite for him. But he doesn’t think he needs it and says he can stay on his own or stay with my sister or daughter. My daughter has just had a baby and I told him this and he said the baby comes before him then. He can’t do much for himself. He is mobile and can walk well but can’t remember what he was doing a few hours ago. He wouldn’t take his tablets, cannot use a phone, doesn’t know what day or time it is. My sister couldn’t cope with him. He would be confused and not remember where he is.

    I just hope he will be happy to go when the time comes. Has anyone else been through this.
  11. Sarahdun

    Sarahdun Registered User

    May 18, 2014
    My father went into a care home when he was 85 - my mother in law when she was around 86. Both adjusted more quickly than we thought they would. In my mother in law's case the care home looked more like a hotel than a care home in many ways. It was a fairly new purpose built home and in my opinion those are usually better than the ones adapted from older houses - they are light and practical and easier to get around. She enjoyed the meals and the company. However her home didn't provide nursing care and so we had to move her a few years in. Ideally I would now look for a purpose built home with a range of different sections catering for different needs including nursing care as well as residential care even if residential is all your husband needs at the moment.
  12. Guzelle

    Guzelle Registered User

    Aug 27, 2016
    It is only residential at the moment. He is getting more unstable with is walking. But he can still manage to shower with help to turn it on and off. He needs help sorting the right clothes to put on. He can’t remember what he did this morning or who relatives are.
  13. Sarahdun

    Sarahdun Registered User

    May 18, 2014
    Sounds very like my husband (though mine is only 63). I have been advised by a care home manager that he only needs residential at the moment if he goes into care home, but that it would be a good idea to be somewhere where he could progress to nursing if/when he needed it. But he does need residential in a specialist dementia unit with a locked door policy. Maybe your husband would be similar.
    My dilemma is whether I should persevere looking after him at home or not.
  14. Antipat

    Antipat Registered User

    May 20, 2019
    I am taking my husband to a care home tomorrow... I am torn up inside. I am so looking forward to a rest , but at the same time I could sit down and cry at the drop of a hat... I cooked his favorite meal tonight . planted a red flower in the planter that he loves... put up a mail box that he also loves. Just trying to make this last weekend good for him. But man it is hard
  15. Sarahdun

    Sarahdun Registered User

    May 18, 2014
    Oh I do sympathise. I hope today goes as well as it possibly can for you both.
  16. Guzelle

    Guzelle Registered User

    Aug 27, 2016
    Hope it will go ok.
  17. Sarahdun

    Sarahdun Registered User

    May 18, 2014
    so I had a chat with local support worker - THANK YOU for that tip - and basically they encouraged me to go for it - so Care home here we come. Wish us luck! ......
  18. Dosey

    Dosey Registered User

    Nov 27, 2017
    Hi Sarahdun
    It is a difficult decision when your OH is young.
    My OH was diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer's at 55 , he is now recently turned 62.
    I cared for him for 7 years through this horrible disease, watching him slowly deteriorate.
    I eventually agreed to him moving to a care home on 2nd April this year ( 8 weeks ago today).
    The 6 months prior to this he refused to take his clothes off sleeping in them, refusing to shower or shave, became frightened of the toilet urinating on the floors all over the house. Holding on to his poo for over a week despite giving him medication for this. Wandering all night up and down the stairs calling out my name despite me being in bed beside him. Constantly returning him to bed trying to get him to lie down to no avail. Among all the other symptoms of advanced dementia. He was unaware of his surroundings and didn't recognise any of our 4 sons.
    Professionals had been recommending Care Home for over 2 years but I had refused.
    An assessment of needs from SS, after application for guardianship, where mental health officer, GP and Dementia Clinic assessments, decision to look at suitable placement was sought, which myself and children agreed to.
    There is not a lot of places for under 65 available. I did think it would take over 6 months to find a placement. I was very upset when a place was found within 3 weeks, and wasn't sure what to do.
    I did take the placement. OH was oblivious to what was happening. I cried for 2 weeks all the time. OH settled well, he is happy to see me when I visit but gets upset when I leave I have to skip away.
    I miss him terribly, but I know he is getting looked after well, I visit and take him out. 24/7 caring for him was to much and he wouldn't let children be with him to give me a break, so sad as my sons and husband were best friends, went to football, played football and golf every week..
    Sorry this is so long, but hope it will help you with your journey.
    Rose x
  19. Sarahdun

    Sarahdun Registered User

    May 18, 2014
    Thank you Rose. I think I am jumping a little bit earlier than you - maybe a few months or a year - but we’ve reached a stage where he barely recognises me, is increasingly sleepy and is happy with near anyone who is kind to him. after 14 years of caring for him I cannot face another winter and have decided that summer (his best time of year) might be the kindest time to try a move to a different kind of home.

    It’s great we have this virtual club on TP but sometimes I wish we had a real one! ☺️
  20. Sarahdun

    Sarahdun Registered User

    May 18, 2014
    Update. Took my husband (early 60s) to the care home today - there will be a month's trial but the plan is for this to be permanent. He had had near a week of trial visits. My reactions are quite unexpected. At home I feel sad and worried (about all kinds of things from money to 'am I doing the right thing' to what will I do without him). In the care home I feel relieved that he will be safe and looked after all the time. It was all feeling increasingly precarious at home for both of us.

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