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Will a care home accept her if she is 'mobile'

Mudlark

Registered User
Jan 13, 2020
56
0
Sorry me again, with more questions.
Mum sill in hospital as her husband and carer (my stepdad) has had heart attack and is also in hospital.
She is on a Dementia ward.

My mother is very mobile, can walk very well, meaning she is 'difficult' to manage as she can tend to wander and has tried to escape. She has been on the ward for 5 days now and they are trying to find a respite place for her in a care home. All the care homes I have tried so far have seemed to be very wary once I say she is 'mobile'.

What happens in a care home to 'mobile' residents, do they lock them in their rooms - I dread this for her.
It's all terrible - she is declining very fast, even in five days, the boredom of the ward, the lack of stimulation, the confusing environment.
I think a care home prefers people who are further along the line - less mobile perhaps.
 

Grannie G

Volunteer Moderator
Apr 3, 2006
74,975
0
Kent
I would think most people in care homes are mobile @Mudlark. I`m sure mobile residents are much easier to care for than those who have lost mobility and need to be hoisted at all times.

There is usually much more freedom of movement in a care home than there is in a hospital and care homes for people with dementia have secure exits.

People are not locked in their individual rooms, but they are locked in the whole building.

Have you been listening to scare stories? Please do not worry.

Is it likely your anxiety is causing you to present your mother as a difficult resident?
 

Sarasa

Volunteer Host
Apr 13, 2018
4,147
0
Things are a bit different than they were pre--COVID , but being mobile shouldn’t be a reason for her home not to accept someone. My mum is still a pacer though she is now very unsteady on her feet. She moved homes recently , and the home are happy to let her wander about. Her previous home also managed, though when she arrived she was very mobile and nearly escaped a couple of times.
I’m sure there is a home out there that will take her, though Covid restrictions often mean trying to quarantine residents in their rooms when they first arrive. Certainly a care home will be better than a hospital ward, and in the right one she should have lots to keep her engaged.
 

Mudlark

Registered User
Jan 13, 2020
56
0
Gosh, I feel reassured already! Yes I had read some horrendous articles about care homes locking their residents in rooms. I do hope they find her a place. It is only me allowed to visit as the designated visitor, and although I spend as long as I can, she seems to be withdrawing into herself. She used to sing in the evenings with her husband playing at the piano and now she can do nothing at all in the evenings.
 

northumbrian_k

Volunteer Host
Mar 2, 2017
1,805
0
Newcastle
Hi @Mudlark, my experience when looking for a care home for my wife was that some were unsuitable because she tended to wander and they did not want that. One with a good reputation but long corridors suggested that I find a smaller place.

I did but that is not what led me to choose it. The deputy manager who I first met impressed me with her description of personalised care and did not seem fazed when I mentioned my wife's behaviours. The home is domestic in scale. There is room to wander and my wife did so at first. Other residents did too. The fact that they are mobile makes it easier for them to use the garden or go out for walks etc (although this has been affected by the pandemic).

Care homes are not prisons and no resident should be locked or otherwise confined in their room. All rooms in my wife's home are open, which can mean residents going into other's rooms. Mobility has never been mentioned to me as being something the home worries about. If my wife wishes to go in the lounge, the dining room, her bedroom or even join a staff meeting she can do.

My wife is more settled and her dementia has progressed but she is still mobile and active. Her tendency to wander has decreased but other residents still do. Only when I am visiting in her room do I sometimes lock the door to stop other residents coming in. But that is to do with Covid restrictions and nothing to do with mobility.
 

Mudlark

Registered User
Jan 13, 2020
56
0
Hi @Mudlark, my experience when looking for a care home for my wife was that some were unsuitable because she tended to wander and they did not want that. One with a good reputation but long corridors suggested that I find a smaller place.

I did but that is not what led me to choose it. The deputy manager who I first met impressed me with her description of personalised care and did not seem fazed when I mentioned my wife's behaviours. The home is domestic in scale. There is room to wander and my wife did so at first. Other residents did too. The fact that they are mobile makes it easier for them to use the garden or go out for walks etc (although this has been affected by the pandemic).

Care homes are not prisons and no resident should be locked or otherwise confined in their room. All rooms in my wife's home are open, which can mean residents going into other's rooms. Mobility has never been mentioned to me as being something the home worries about. If my wife wishes to go in the lounge, the dining room, her bedroom or even join a staff meeting she can do.

My wife is more settled and her dementia has progressed but she is still mobile and active. Her tendency to wander has decreased but other residents still do. Only when I am visiting in her room do I sometimes lock the door to stop other residents coming in. But that is to do with Covid restrictions and nothing to do with mobility.
Thank you for your reply. I am so pleased your wife is in a home that cares for her so well.

I am somewhat overwhelmed as my stepfather is also in hospital and he would usually have a great deal of input into my mothers future. I fear the hospital will just find somewhere, anywhere for her just to free up the bed in the ward.
However your post has reassured me that mobility should not be an issue.
 

Violet Jane

Registered User
Aug 23, 2021
566
0
I’ve not heard of care homes objecting to people being ‘mobile’. If a PWD has good mobility s/he is less likely to fall and only needs guidance when, say, going to the toilet rather than physical support. As has been said above, hospital wards are not good places for people with dementia who move around a lot. The staff can’t cope with them wandering about and would rather they stayed sitting in a chair.

My mother was fully mobile when she went into a home and this is not uncommon as many people with dementia are completely fit and healthy otherwise although they become frail and start to have mobility problems as their dementia progresses.

Whilst you need to be honest with care homes I wouldn’t present good mobility as a problem. When they ask about your mother’s mobility just say that she has no problems with mobility. If she tries to leave her house they will need to know about that but that is a different issue.

Residents are not looked in their rooms. They are not prisoners.

If your mother is moved to a care home from hospital and she is a self-funder you can move her somewhere else if you’re not happy with it.
 

Duggies-girl

Registered User
Sep 6, 2017
2,994
0
The only experience I have of a care home is when I went to look at one for dad although he never actually went in there. A woman showed me around and I did notice that residents were moving around quite freely, they had a lounge like a little cafe where they were served coffee and tea and a tv room. The woman did show me the stairs which were behind a locked door which seemed quite sensible, she said that the residents were not allowed to use them unescorted for safety reasons. Everyone seemed reasonably happy but I felt too guilty so dad never even knew that I looked at it.
 

canary

Registered User
Feb 25, 2014
16,682
0
South coast
Hi @Mudlark . If youve got a person with dementia who is mobile and is trying to escape youve got to look for a "secure" home. This is one of those things that residential homes that advertise that they accept people with dementia dont want. Even some homes that say they specialise in dementia dont want people who they see as at all "challenging"

So youve got to look for the right place, but they are out there, My mum was in a dedicated dementia (EMI) home as she was a wanderer. The home allowed her to wander all round the home, even at night, but she didnt manage to get out. Her care home also had an open door policy. This was pre-covid and I think the stuff you have read about residents being locked in their rooms is referring to ways that some care homes have tried to manage isolation. It might be worth checking with the manager how they would manage it. I have read a couple of posts on here about a care home that paired two wanderers up so that they could isolate together.
 

northumbrian_k

Volunteer Host
Mar 2, 2017
1,805
0
Newcastle
It is worth saying that freedom to wander helped my wife to settle as she formed a bond with another resident who also liked to traipse the corridors. Another resident who sleeps most of the day wakes to sing to the staff at around 5am. Others stay in their rooms or come into the lounge as they please. It is their home and freedom to move around is paramount.

All of this goes on behind a door controlled by a keypad, beyond which is a lift with keypad, another door, then some stairs. Ordinarily residents from the 2 floors would get together for social events with the lift and stairs used only under supervision. Finally there is a controlled outer door that keeps everyone safe.

This is a far cry from the posh 'dementia' home with a tuck shop and free bar! My wife would not have been there long as the management wanted people who could 'behave'!
 

Susan11

Registered User
Nov 18, 2018
4,033
0
I don't think it would be a problem. In Mum's care home people walked about all the time. Mum had a sensor mat by her bed so if she got up in the night the night staff were aware and could keep an eye on her. Remember that is their job and they are happy to monitor wanderers. One lady wanted to escape so sat by the front door all the time. The staff just tempted to her to stay by offering her coffee and biscuits. It was a manner of them saying " you don't want to go now. Come and have a cup of coffee and cake with me" She went with them happily and was not distressed.
 

Jaded'n'faded

Registered User
Jan 23, 2019
2,391
0
High Peak
I had no idea my mother was a wanderer because she was living independently (and undiagnosed) then went into hospital following a fall, then straight to a care home.

A few days later the home phoned me to say mum was up all night, wandering the corridors, banging on doors and going in rooms. During the day, she'd sit by the door with her bags packed, waiting for a chance to escape. She succeeded on one occasion (because at that point she looked like a visitor and another visitor held the door open for her!) She was spotted and immediately brought back.

But I was really lucky with the home/staff as they didn't see these things as a problem. The admin lady was able to watch mum sitting in reception (from her office) and decided to give her a clipboard and pen. She asked mum to keep a note of all the people coming and going then report back to her later. Mum loved her new job. It made her feel useful/important (though her clipoard remained mostly blank!) and she'd turn up at the office every morning.

Even when mum got really bad, shouting and screaming on occasions, demanding to be let out and even picking up a chair to bash the doors with, even then they coped admirably.

Just to add, she was never given any drugs, locked in her room or anything awful like that. They just did a great job of managing her outbursts.
 

Sarasa

Volunteer Host
Apr 13, 2018
4,147
0
Is your mother self-funding @Mudlark? If she is you can chose whatever home you think that would be suitable that will accept her. Recently we looked at homes for both my mother and mother in law, and it really brought home how different each home is. A home that would have been ideal for one of them, would have been totally unsuitable for the other. For instance MiL is in a small home, where though they can deal with the problems due to incontinence and general dementia confusion, I think they would struggle with my much feistier mum who would be wanting to challenge everything. There was one home I really liked, but the stairs were easily accessible and I knew mum would have been up them and probably falling down them in a flash. Also one of the reasons MiL's home was chosen because it had a nice garden. Important for her, but not my mum.
It may well be that you have to accept whichever home will take her straight from hospital, but although it isn't ideal that wouldn't stop you moving her at a later date. Also when your step-father is a little better will he want to have some input into where your mother moves?
 

Banjomansmate

Registered User
Jan 13, 2019
3,363
0
Dorset
Having been a musician and pub manager, even after he retired The Banjoman still stayed up late, rarely going to bed before midnight or later. Once in residential care he was to be found walking the corridors late at night. The staff would make him a sandwich and a cup of tea and chat with him before settling him down again.
 

thistlejak

Registered User
Jun 6, 2020
149
0
When we were looking for a Nursing home (EMI) for MIL we looked at 8 - some were beautiful old houses but for her they were too fragmented. We went for a modern one with long corridors leading from a central nurses office. Access from her floor was controlled by a keypad glass gate and a keypad lift. There were seating areas along and at the end of the corridors. She went there straight from a Dementia Unit and settled easier than we thought she would. The staff liked her feisty nature - she has been there 2 years now so is much more mellow as her dementia has progressed.
As @Sarasa says they are all very different and what suits one person won't suit another.
Good luck - hope you find somewhere suitable, it will be out there.
 

Jale

Registered User
Jul 9, 2018
614
0
No experience of care homes, but Mum is in a nursing home and that has mobile residents - not all have dementia. The only thing I would say it is better to be turned down by a care home before your Mum moves there.

Good luck
 

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