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Q: Elderly care ( No Answer,   2 Comments )
Subject: Elderly care
Category: Family and Home > Seniors
Asked by: boogles-ga
List Price: $20.00
Posted: 09 Apr 2003 14:05 PDT
Expires: 09 May 2003 14:05 PDT
Question ID: 188437
My brother and sister-in-law are caring for my 85 y/o father. He is
probably mildly depressed and unmotivated to do almost anything. All
food is served to him. He has assistance bathing, dressing, etc. He
can walk with a walker. They take very good care of him and have met
his wish to stay in his own home by hiring helpers approx. 6 hrs/day.
The physician estimates he has another 6 years or so to go.

The problem is, he essentially sits in a chair or sleeps almost all
the time. Although they are trying to get him to walk a bit, progress
is slow. We have talked to him to motivate him to do things but he has
either refused or not followed thru. Perhaps he could do a lot more if
he had to but he does not have to. The level of assistance he is
currently getting began before getting his pacemaker but it's hard now
to reduce the care and we are not sure what level he really needs. He
gives the impression he needs all the care he is getting but maybe
that is because he has adapted to such care.

It seems like there must be a better strategy for taking care of him
that would result in him getting something out of the balance of his
life, allow him to do some of his own care, and reduce the expense of
nearly full time help. But the status quo has him continuing in his
chair doing almost nothing.

Is there a better way to proceed in his care?

I would like an answer from a relevant professional. Comments are
welcome from those with relevant personal experience.
There is no answer at this time.

Subject: Re: Elderly care
From: pinkfreud-ga on 09 Apr 2003 17:17 PDT
As the primary caregiver for my elderly father in the last year of his
life, I can identify with this situation. My dad seemed to derive a
certain pleasure from being waited on hand and foot, and he allowed
his strength to deteriorate to the point where he rarely left his bed,
even though there was no specific ailment preventing him from walking.
He seemed bored, but suggestions of interesting things to do were
always rebuffed. His doctor prescribed Prozac, which had no noticeable
effect (other than to leach money out of his dwindling bank account.)

The only recommendation I can make is to have this gentleman
interviewed and examined by a Geriatrician. A physician who
specializes in the elderly may be able to draw on experience with
other patients and suggest ways to liven up this man's existence,
while relieving his loved ones of some of the burden of their
Subject: Re: Elderly care
From: boogles-ga on 10 Apr 2003 06:47 PDT
Hi pinkfreud - Thanks for your story and suggestion. - Boogles

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