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When is a care home the best answer?

Just wondering if anyone on this forum has had to make the decision to put a loved one in a care home. And if so, at what point was it the right thing to do?

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Hello freezingspark....a hard question to answer.

There are many factor to look at before making that decision and probably many sleepless nights. There is never a right time.

Your priority has to be that loved one. No matter what you think, medical professionals and friends...you must put his/her wants and needs first

Presumably you have discussed with GP, social worker, care home and loved one?

x

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Thanks for replying! No discussions so far as i think my dad is ok for now but i want to make sure that, as a family, we're aware of the possibility before it's too late.

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Hello, we had to put my mother-in-law in a care home as she has vascular dementia and Alzheimer’s and could no longer look after herself.

It wasn’t an easy decision to make but we did our research and visited around 6-8 homes before settling on where she is now.

It’s best to see which home meets a persons needs and has staff that are well trained and able to give the best of care. It’s also a good idea to visit at different times of day if possible because that can make a difference too.

The home m-I-L is in works around the residents, not the other way round and the menu is varied and nutritious.

Hope that helps a little. Xxx

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It sounds like you really put in the effort to find this home for your MIL and you found a great place for her. I read a book that really emphasised the need for people to retain some independence/working around them when they're in a home, so that people still have something to live for. thanks for your reply

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I don't think there's ever a right time either, I know it's a very very difficult decision which comes to most of us as our elderly parents are needing more and more care which we aren't always able to provide, and if it's not our parents it comes to our partner or ourselves eventually, I looked after my Mum who had vascular dementia until I could not longer do it, but it was with a heavy heart , though. I suppose I knew deep down that it was the right decision for her wellbeing it was still heartbreaking, discussions with a social worker and dr help, but in the end it's we who have to make the hard decision, good luck and take care of yourself

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Thanks Mydexter I'm sure in the long run it was best for both of you, although so desperately sad. I hope she was ok the home in the end :)

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Unfortunately my Mum wasn't there for long as her condition rapidly worsened and sadly we lost her

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Hi FreezingPark, as other members have posted, this is a difficult decision. Please stay on this supportive forum where you will receive some more helpful advice from other members, many of whom have also made this decision. I have had a look on AGE UK website and there is some excellent information on there and also a video where someone is giving ideas on the things to consider when making your choice.

The link to the website is---

ageuk.org.uk/information-ad...

I hope this is helpful to you. Thank you and best wishes.

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Hi freezingspark,

My family and I had to take the very difficult decision to place my sister (who had vascular dementia) into a care home after she began to refuse to let us into her home and was then neglecting and hurting herself.

It hurt to do it, because she was bewildered and unhappy at leaving her own beloved and familiar home and there was a sense of abandonment on both sides.

It's a dilemma to which there is no simple answer.

As well as your loved one's needs, there are yours to consider too. When it all becomes too much to cope with his or her needs satisfactorily, is probably the point at which you realize there's no other solution. But that doesn't mean you'll ever necessarily be totally at peace with your decision.

But you can show your continuing love, not only by finding the best home that you can, but by being really supportive afterwards.

I think there's inevitably a little bit of a feeling that you've failed both yourself and your loved one, but that's not true. If you are no longer able to cope with the level of caring needed, then it would be neglectful not to consider a care home.

I see that you've already had some other great advice, so I hope we've all been of some help to you.

If you are facing this yourself, do come back and let us know how you are getting on and let us know what you decided.

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Thanks Callendersgal. Its for my dad and I don't think we're quite there yet but I want to make sure my mum never feels like she can't suggest it or feels that by suggesting it she's failed. Basically I want to be able to have the conversation before its too late i think.

I hope your sister was ok in the home and you and your family don't feel like you failed at all :)

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Thanks so much for your response freezingspark. I'm glad you have some time before you have to address this very difficult decision. I think you are so right to want to raise the subject before there is a sudden emergency that makes any family input into the decision, impossible.

My sister did have a good quality of life in her care home. Unfortunately her condition made her very grumpy and she complained lots, but in fact she was mostly very contented there, and was looked after really well.

As her condition worsened, we were completely happy with our decision. We knew she was safe and was as happy as her condition would allow.

Very best wishes.

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Hi, why not try respite for a week or so? That's what I decided to do after researching many care homes. My mother went for 2 weeks and after that decided she no longer wanted to live with me!! Mom has been in a small residential CH with very good carers for a year now & although she does not have dementia she does get very confused, but she is happy there and has made many new friends. Our relationship is so much better now the stress has been lifted and the day to day care is fantastic. Everyone is different & I hope you find the right CH for your mom. Best wishes Jan xx

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Hi jan, thats a really good idea. A staggered approach does sound more approachable for all parties. I'm glad that it worked out well for you as well!

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My Mum went for a 2 week "holiday" in a care home, reluctantly I hasten to add but she wasn't safe living on her own, she hated having carers in and it was to difficult for me to keep trekking over every day. She had been going to the day centre at the home once a week so a 2 week "holiday" was the next step and it was a huge relief all round. Clearly it was the way to go so she moved in very soon after her "holiday". She was happier without the worry of being on her own at home and it worked for me as I wasn't constantly wondering what she was up to.

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Thats so good to hear! Sounds like it was the best situation for you both

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Thank you I wish you the very best whatever you decide I hope it all works out to the good take care Jan x

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That's a great idea, my Mum used to go into respite for us to have a break a couple of times a year, and she loved it with people of her own age though she didn't want to go but she got to look forward to her 'holiday'

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Can you find a time to discuss with your mum and dad together. No holds barred complete honesty, and prepare a list of why's. I work in a unit for varying degrees of dementia out of 13 four are able to comprehend their stay will be long term. Occasionally that needs to be reinforced in a one on one supportive chat lasting anything from half hour to one hour. We recently introduced our summer Garden outdoor hobby and go out to places of interest either on one to one or group basis.

This way of encouraging residents to remain independent also have an advantage of reducing volitile personalities.

Listen to your innard voice. Good luck

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Really interesting to hear from your perspective! its really encouraging to know that there are places that want to promote this independence. Do you find it makes to people's happiness?

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Hello there, that is a difficult question to answer. Two things have to be considered, the best interest of the loved one, and the interests of the carer. I recall my mum having to go into a care home when she became too frail to take care of herself and my sister could no longer travel 160 miles to do so. The Drs in hospital took the decision out of our hands in respect of my father-in-law as they felt it was too much to expect a family carer to give him 24 hours care a day, I was his main carer. He did pass away a few weeks after the decision . Hope this helps you to understand. Every case is different even in the same family.

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