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Bette
Reply with quote  #31 

Jane,

 

Yes, I realize that it will take some time and I plan on helping her along the way.  Although, I realize that I don't want to interfere with the care that she will be receiving there. I just don't want her to feel that she has been abandoned.  I have already started planning for a surprise 85th birthday party there for her. 

And yes you are right about the money.  She worked so hard along side of my Dad I don't expect any rewards.  I feel that my reward is the wonderful memories that we have shared. No money can replace that.

Hope that your Mother is doing okay. Thanks again for caring.

Bette 

Brenda
Reply with quote  #32 

I had to put my 81-year-old mom in an AL at the first of the year.  Of course she did not want to go and she was very angry.  But I had to explain that she needed more help than I could give her.  There were things that I just could not bring myself to do and I feel so guilty. There comes a time AL is the only choice.   It's the only way I would know she is safe, clean and fed

Bette
Reply with quote  #33 

Dear Jane,

 

After reading your post, I know what you mean about guilt.  But you are doing it out of the love because you are right when you say that you can't do anymore.  When they get angry, you know that can come drom dementia?  It's never easy to put a loved one in a facility, because we can't do it all.  I have health issues as well as a husband and he has been very supportive.  When I took her in to register she saw the nurse for an assessment, and the nurse asked her about resusciation.  My Mom said absolutely not. So of course the water works came from both of us.  But that is her decision, plus she was to be with my Dad.  She is going down fast. But hopefully she will perk back up when she moves in to the ALF the end of the month.  I told them that I want her to get as involved as possible. So whether or not she will is a long shot. But, they will make sure that she eats and she doesn't do alot of that now.

 

Yes getting back to the guilt part.  I know deep down in my heart that I have been there for both of my parents through thick and thin.  And I have good memories that I can always cherish.  You can only do so much. Then it comes time for help.  I just hope that I never have to put her in a nursing home.  I hope that the good lord takes her first.  She would never survive that.

Well, you take care and start thinking about yourself.  Because I am a good example that stress can do many harmful things to your body.

Bette

Bette
Reply with quote  #34 

I am sorry, I meant to address the previous message to Brenda.

Sue
Reply with quote  #35 
Hi Everyone:  I just found this site and reading all your messages makes me feel not so alone in dealing with this problem.  My Mom is 88 and is in great health and living alone.  She was taking no medications until two months ago except for drops for glaucoma.  She is now on Zanax for the anxiety, Arecept for memory, and we are trying Resperidol for the hallucinations.  Has anyone had any experience with that last drug?  She is doing well except for all the "visitors" to her home.  I am going to have her doctor check for any  infection which I read in the messages can cause this problem.  Thanks for this wonderful site.  Sue
mary
Reply with quote  #36 

Hi Everyone,

 

As sad as it is...I'm glad I'm not alone.  My mother moved in with me 6yr. ago. Due to vision loss. 

 

3yrs. ago she had a bad fall, which left her totally dependent.  I quit my job to stay home & care for her.  She is finacially okay, so I do get paid. 

 

She is now 88 & is having hallucinations.  Actually we had a bout with them a few years ago.  After switching doctors we realized she was very low on B12.  I've been giving her shots ever since.  She was also on a muscle relaxer that could have been causing them.  She was also VERY low on potassium.  After this was all corrected the hallucinations seemed to stop.

 

Over the past few years there have been episodes very far & inbetween.  Lately they are back in full force. 

 

The episode prior to the one she's having now was about a month ago, it seemed to last forever.  It was bad for about 2 weeks.  Then seemed to go on & off for the next 3 weeks.

 

This one started Monday & she isn't out of it yet.  It seems to be getting better.  At least it isn't scaring her like it was the first 2 days.

 

With my mom it seems I get dragged into them.  She feels I'm involved somehow.

If she's seeing people,  I'm letting them be there.  She asks me " Why do you let them do this to an old lady"  She tells me I'm whispering with them. etc.   She'll accuse my husband or myself of taking pictures of her while she's going potty.  Crazy Crazy stuff ! ! !   It gets to the point where I want to scream.

 

I do have 2 brothers who help out on Saturdays (most of the time)...so I can get errends done.  Other then that I'm here 24/7 .  Sleep is a thing of the past, unless we get a hotel room.  ( My brothers don't want to stay overnight if we're here)  I don't know why exactly...but they don't .    So....unless we can afford to get a hotel I don't sleep.

 

I get frustrated due to the fact I can't budge unless I have one of them here to cover me.  They make me feel like I'm putting them out.  Like I'v just asked them to give up their first born  if I ask for an extra day.  I know if I push they'll tell me to put her in a home.  Which I won't do.   She won't let anyone take care of her except the 3 of us.  Sure I could insist...but I don't want her to be miserable either.

 

I have a husband who gets frustrated with the whole situation, but won't say anything.  (which can be worse)  He also feels since I'm home all day (apparently doing NOTHING) I should be able to handle doing EVERYTHING.

 

I know I'm a lot better off then some people who are caring for an elderly person.

I do get paid, & I do have a few hours on Saturdays to get things done.

 

During these times, when she's  hallusinating it's more difficult.  I guess I just need to vent to people who might understand.

 

Thanks for listening.

Mary

Jane
Reply with quote  #37 

Mary and all,

Dealing with hallucenations is the worse thing of all because you can't get the hallucenator to understand that the things they see are not real. They will think you are conspiring against them, trying to make them look crazy.

I can only sympathise for what you are going through, having done it a couple of times with my mother. Thank God, hers was temporary due to stress, meds, and infection.

 

Someone mentioned (I can't back up to check who, w/o losing this letter) that their mother started seeing things after going onto Xanac(?). Sometimes anti-depressants make a person extremely edgy while their bodies and minds adjust to the new chemical. It usually takes a few weeks before it stops. Look on the web for side effects for the drugs that your mothers are taking. Sometimes you'll finds the answer right there at the manufacturer's web site.

 

Pat
Reply with quote  #38 
Dear people--I just stumbled upon this website, and was astonished to find my story told over and over again... I am 59, female, and an only child. My widowed mom is 87, and lives in Florida (I am in Arizona). My mom has been having various hallucinations (mostly auditory) for several years. Last year, we found out that musical hallucinations often occur in hearing-impaired people (my mom is very deaf). You may want to see the article on musical hallucinations by Carl Zimmer. We confronted the problem by getting her new hearing aids, strongly instructing her to wear them all the time, having her play soft music all through the house, and taking a low dose of Risperdal. That seemed to help a lot. She still hears music, but is no longer afraid. A neurologist we consulted said that hallucinations (usually visual) in the elderly are very common, and often are due to infection, antibiotics (my mother had severe reactions to Levaquin), hearing or visual impairment, lack of stimulation, poor sleep, and loneliness. I am often at my wit's end in dealing with my mom's problems, but we can only do the best we can, and try to preserve our own sanity. Guilt is a destructive emotion, and impairs our ability to solve problems. We are only human. I wish strength to all of you.
Bette
Reply with quote  #39 

Hello.

I have been wanting to get back to all of you so that you could look at this link that I found regarding Risperdal and antipsychotic medications.  My Mom's Doctor's perscribed it for her but after seeing this I clearly said NO!! I am not going to say that it is not for everyone, because I am not a Doctor or not even in the medical field.  But going through with my Dad 3 years ago and not doing my own research, believe me things would have been different.

I decided against it because my Mother is already at great risk for a heart attack or stroke.

Please open the link below if you can. If for some reason it doesn't show up, send me a new post and your email address and I will get it to you.

 

 

http://www.fda.gov/cder/drug/advisory/antipsychotics.htm

 

This site has help me so much, you have no idea.  I even talked with my Mom tonight and told her about it.  She couldn't believe that there was stuff like this over the internet.  When she get settled in I plan on taking my laptop over to her and reading some of the posts.  I think that when she hears about them, it will help her to know that she is not alone.

 

Thanks again to all of you, and any time your loved one is given medication for this, look it up and above all check for drug interactions on the web.  Honestly, I don't know what I would do without my computer, it has helped me so much.

 

Well got to run, gotta get up early for the move.

Love to all,
Bette

Bette
Reply with quote  #40 

Forgot to add something to my previous post.  Do any of your loved ones have macular degeneration and any of them on Ocuvite with Lutein?  This is an over the counter medication for the eyes.

I just took my Mom in today to have lab work done to see what her copper levels were.  Then last night I read somewhere last night that magnesium lack of or too much of can also cause hallunications as well.

I don't understand these Doctor's. Why don't they test for stuff like this?  It is hard enough for us to watch our parents age and see that they cannot do things for themselves like they once did. But then again, it's hard on the children as well, because it seems like I am doing all of the research work that the Doctors went to school for how many years???

Well, keep me posted.  I am really looking forward to seeing how many of them have macular degeneration and are on this medicine.

Talk soon

Chris
Reply with quote  #41 

We moved my father, who is 79,  to the town we live in after my mother died. He has his own apartment because we have only a 3 bedroom house. He wakes up and at 2-4 AM drives to our house and thinks it's morning. Naturally, with husband having to gte up at 6 for work and high school kids having to get up for school, this disturbs everyone's sleep. Of course the dogs bark like crazy and they get all mixed up too, wanting to eat at 2AM. He then sits on our couch and falls asleep all day, which messes up his own sleep pattern and he continues to come to our house in the middle of the night. Is this a common thing with the elderly?

Bette
Reply with quote  #42 

Chris, is your Father under the care of a Doctor?  If not I would have him checked out.  I am no medical person, but I am finding out that anything is possible when they get older and especially if they have had such a tramatic experience such as the loss of your Mother. My Mom really started going downhill and it's been almost 3 years since my Dads death.

 

You might even want to check out a Neurologist to see if there is some dementia going on.  What type of medications is he on?  Please check all of this stuff out. It's hard I know, but sounds like you need some peace in your life and he needs some medical help.

 

Good luck and keep me posted.

Janet
Reply with quote  #43 

Hi Chris,

 

My father in law was recently placed in an Altzeimers ward of an Assisted Living facility and the family was notified recently that his sleep cycle was reversed.  He was walking the halls during the night, going into other people's rooms and just not able to sleep.  He was taken to a geriatric psychologist (not for traditional analysis, but because that is the person who understands these kinds of issues in the elderly and can prescribe the correct doses of meds).  With his new medication, he seems to be sleeping during the night, but of course, also nods off frequently during the day.  It's difficult to get the dosages balanced.  He has to visit the doctor every month for a while.

 

Is your dad confused at all during the day?  Does he sleep a lot which would account for his sleeplessness during the night?  Sometimes I think the elderly don't realize that they are nodding off during the day while watching TV or reading.  Life slows down, there is not much to do, and sleep comes.

 

If he is confused at all - forgetting people's names or common words, I would definitely take him in for a physical.  If he is in very early stages of dementia, there is new medicine to help.  Or if he has a vascular problem, you might ward off a serious stroke.  At the very least determine if he should be driving, becasue if he is confused at all or sleepwalking (or sleepdriving), he could go through a red light and hurt himself or others.

Bette
Reply with quote  #44 

Hi Janet,

 

You wrote to Chris about taking meds to avoid stroke.  I just placed my Mom in an ALF and she seems to be doing good so far.  She has mild dementia with hallucinations but since being in this facility the hallucinations have seemed not so bad.  Her Doctor wanted to put her on Risperdal and that had a bad write up by the FDA and since she has chronic A-Fib and pulmonary hypertension I tend to hesitate.  Sometimes I feel that medicines do more harm then good.  It's just like the Ocuvite for macular degeneration that she is taking for her eyes. Her copper level is way up on the high side.  When I go into the Doctors with my Mom, I take a list of questions and they just don't seem to want to answer them and that is why I am changing until I find someone who will generally care for her and not her money.

That's it for now.

Bette

Sheila
Reply with quote  #45 

This has been very interesting for me to read all the stories that have to do with hallucinations and elderly parents.  I had not realized that they are fairly common.  Recently, we have been concerned about my Mother-in-Law who has probably not slept through the night in months.  She lives in an apartment by herself, is going to be 85, has high blood pressure, had heart by-pass 6 years ago, so is on meds, but I am not sure what kinds.  Her first incidents happened when she woke up and saw bugs on the door in her room.  They left quickly when she moved.  She told the landlord and he checked things out and sprayed.  She also sprayed and sprayed, which I cannot believe is very good for her.  We kind of thought there might have been roaches in her place.  Since then, however, she has observed other things like bats, squirrels and furry things.  She has told everyone about them and believes they are really there.  My brother-in-law set up a motion camera in her room and the pictures he got were of a little old lady beating the curtains with a cane.  My sister-in-law is at her wits end since she is the main caregiver.  Mother-in-law says that some people think she is dreaming but it is not a dream.  We are going to try to clue her doctor in before her next appoinment, but my husband and I think that before that time, she is going to go "crazy" with anxiety and not get the rest she needs.  We live the farthest from her and feel helpless.  I have not noticed anyone else talking about animals, bugs being the main problem.  She has not seen people or heard any strange noises or music.  I am doing this at work and will not be able to reply for at least 5 days.  If anyone has any hints, words of wisdom, or anything else to say, I would appreciate it. 

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