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boston19
@boston19

Posts: 6
Joined: Mar 08, 2018

Always calling out for help while in bed

Posted by @boston19, Sat, Apr 7 3:26pm

I have just started caring for my mother in law in my home. She is 87 . She has dementia, she is incontinent and she has macular degeneration. She was in a nursing home but she was private pay and she had just about run out of money. So it was either pay for her nursing home bill ourselves or take care of her!! She will not be eligible for Medicaid for another year. She has been with us for a month. She was walking with a walker but now she only has strength to stand and pivot into the wheelchair. I was also taking her into the bathroom every few hours but now I have to clean and change her on her bed…not the most pleasant thing I have ever had to do! She sleeps all night and is not argumentative…so we are very thankful for that. The thing that drives me crazy is when she lies down to rest in the afternoon. She doesn't stop calling out that she needs help! She will be in bed for a minute and she starts saying that she needs help.I go over to her and tell her that she is okay and she is in her nice warm bed. She says okay, thank you. Then a second later she is calling for help again. I have tried putting on music or the tv but it doesn't seem to help. I was wondering if anyone has any ideas on how to help her and me!

REPLY

Hello @boston19, Welcome to Mayo Clinic Connect. I have in highest regard for people who are willing to take in their older relatives at a time when they require assistance.

I'm glad she is not argumentative. That is a blessing n itself.
I was going to suggest maybe using ear plugs with her favorite music. However you have already played music. This is just a thought on my part with no experience. Perhaps her favorite music softly played in the back ground with soft spoken words included on a tape or disc talking over the music that would make feel safe and comfortable repeatedly letting her know where she is and that your there. It's understandable that her short term memory is lacking. However repeated reassurance that everything is good may hel to a certain degree. It's going to be a challenge for sure.
She sounds like she is a sweet lady despite her illness. Hope you find something that works.

Another thing you could try is a baby monitor where you could reply to request for help without having to go back in her room.
Have you thought of anything you would like to try?
There may be some members who may be able to help you accomplish your desire.

Hope This Helps
Errol

@duvie

Hello @boston19, Welcome to Mayo Clinic Connect. I have in highest regard for people who are willing to take in their older relatives at a time when they require assistance.

I'm glad she is not argumentative. That is a blessing n itself.
I was going to suggest maybe using ear plugs with her favorite music. However you have already played music. This is just a thought on my part with no experience. Perhaps her favorite music softly played in the back ground with soft spoken words included on a tape or disc talking over the music that would make feel safe and comfortable repeatedly letting her know where she is and that your there. It's understandable that her short term memory is lacking. However repeated reassurance that everything is good may hel to a certain degree. It's going to be a challenge for sure.
She sounds like she is a sweet lady despite her illness. Hope you find something that works.

Another thing you could try is a baby monitor where you could reply to request for help without having to go back in her room.
Have you thought of anything you would like to try?
There may be some members who may be able to help you accomplish your desire.

Hope This Helps
Errol

Jump to this post

Thank you…very good ideas!

@duvie

Hello @boston19, Welcome to Mayo Clinic Connect. I have in highest regard for people who are willing to take in their older relatives at a time when they require assistance.

I'm glad she is not argumentative. That is a blessing n itself.
I was going to suggest maybe using ear plugs with her favorite music. However you have already played music. This is just a thought on my part with no experience. Perhaps her favorite music softly played in the back ground with soft spoken words included on a tape or disc talking over the music that would make feel safe and comfortable repeatedly letting her know where she is and that your there. It's understandable that her short term memory is lacking. However repeated reassurance that everything is good may hel to a certain degree. It's going to be a challenge for sure.
She sounds like she is a sweet lady despite her illness. Hope you find something that works.

Another thing you could try is a baby monitor where you could reply to request for help without having to go back in her room.
Have you thought of anything you would like to try?
There may be some members who may be able to help you accomplish your desire.

Hope This Helps
Errol

Jump to this post

Try a lift chair, she can nap in that when she is tired.

Hello @boston19 Nice to e-meet you here. Sorry to hear of your caregiving challenges. It is never, ever an easy road, nor is it one that seems to stay the same for very long at a time. I am Scott and I was my wife's caregiver for 14+ years. During those years she went though many 'phases' in her care needs. While she did not ask for help, she would constantly call my name. While it drove me to distraction, our children used to say to me 'boy, Dad, you are lucky Mom loves you so much!' That little bit of joking sure eased the tension at those times for me.

In my wife's case I would extend the period between when I went into our bedroom to respond to her by one 'Scott' from the beginning of the day to the end. In the morning when she said this the first time, I went right in. Then the next time I waited for two "Scotts'. Then three and so on. While I know each patient is different, this helped me though those days.

In my wife's case the radio or TV made her anxiety worse so we quickly realized silence was far more comforting to her — again this was in her case and might well be very different for others.

I also used the baby monitor, which was at her bedside the whole of her illness. A nice and inexpensive option!

I can say this phase with my wife did change over time!

Courage, strength, and peace!

I have the same problem with my 98 year old Mom. The only difference is that she does it in the early morning — around 4 or 5 a.m. And instead of saying "Help" she simply calls my name. And as with your mom, once I'm there she'll tell me she's okay but then will forget and call me again as soon as I'm gone. It drives me nuts. It does seem, however, that if you give her something to eat –a banana, say– she'll calm down and fall back to sleep.

Hi @boston19
I would like to make a suggestion get yourself a baby monitor from a second hand store or if you have one that you can borrow from someone and put one part in her room and the other part with you and that way you can just talk to her from where you are .
I know a few people have taken that suggestion and they I really helps it's like having an intercom system and if you do have an intercom system definitely use it so you don't always have to go up to the room or down the room just thought I'd put that out there.
There's also apps that you can use to go 2 ways if you have a screen in the room or tablet I'm not to texy Savvy but I know that those things are available but personally I like the two way baby monitors,they are so sophisticated,they are great.
it's a great way to reassure her if that's what it seems like she wants without you having to go up and down all the time to wherever she may be just wanted to throw that thawed out to you it might work it may not but doesn't hurt to think about other things that might work
Curly

That sounds like a great idea…I will have to try that! Thanks!

@tingkun55

I have the same problem with my 98 year old Mom. The only difference is that she does it in the early morning — around 4 or 5 a.m. And instead of saying "Help" she simply calls my name. And as with your mom, once I'm there she'll tell me she's okay but then will forget and call me again as soon as I'm gone. It drives me nuts. It does seem, however, that if you give her something to eat –a banana, say– she'll calm down and fall back to sleep.

Jump to this post

I will try to give her something to eat! Thanks for the suggestion. Hope things are good with you!

@IndianaScott

Hello @boston19 Nice to e-meet you here. Sorry to hear of your caregiving challenges. It is never, ever an easy road, nor is it one that seems to stay the same for very long at a time. I am Scott and I was my wife's caregiver for 14+ years. During those years she went though many 'phases' in her care needs. While she did not ask for help, she would constantly call my name. While it drove me to distraction, our children used to say to me 'boy, Dad, you are lucky Mom loves you so much!' That little bit of joking sure eased the tension at those times for me.

In my wife's case I would extend the period between when I went into our bedroom to respond to her by one 'Scott' from the beginning of the day to the end. In the morning when she said this the first time, I went right in. Then the next time I waited for two "Scotts'. Then three and so on. While I know each patient is different, this helped me though those days.

In my wife's case the radio or TV made her anxiety worse so we quickly realized silence was far more comforting to her — again this was in her case and might well be very different for others.

I also used the baby monitor, which was at her bedside the whole of her illness. A nice and inexpensive option!

I can say this phase with my wife did change over time!

Courage, strength, and peace!

Jump to this post

I am glad that you have children that helped you ease the tension during your wife's caregiving. Thanks for the thoughts. I have been praying to the Holy Spirit for peace and courage.

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