Category: Family and Home > Seniors
Asked by: boogles-ga
List Price: $20.00
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.
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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 responsibilities.
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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