Dad's in the hospital

mikeandbarbNovember 9, 2008

He was complaining of chest pains and his stomach hurting from the hernia so the nursing home sent him to the hospital. They amitted him in but I can't find out whats going on till tomorrow.They can't tell me over the phone.

I can't sit in the chairs they have cause of my back and it's hard leaving him alone but if I stay there for long it gets me down and the next day I can't get around, I would be down in bed for the next day or two.

I'll go see him tomorrow to see what is going on.

Dad was in pretty good spritis talking about the rabbit ..bugs bunny.. and the man in the cartoon..Elmer Fund.. He couldn't remember their names and when I said their names he wasn't understanding what I was saying. He was laughing thinking about how silly the cartoons were.

He'd try to talk and lose train of thought, I think it's getting worse.

The only thing we could tell that wasn't good was his blood pressure was 220 over 111. His heart beat was only 52 to 55, it's been like this for a few years now.

So far his only complaint of the new home is that he has to share the bathroom between two rooms. This is bad but what the heck can you do. I searched all the homes in the area and this is the best one I found. It's not easy finding one quick.


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Sorry your dad is in the hospital, hope all will be okay.
As for the chairs, ask the staff for a different one. They will normally accomadate family members with problems. At least they do here at the hospital we use.
Let us know how your dad is doing and what the doctors have to say. I have been meaning to ask you, is your dad on Aricept?

    Bookmark   November 10, 2008 at 7:54AM
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Oh my!!! I sure hope that things go smoothly for him.

Please keep us posted as to how he is.

Take care of yourself too.

    Bookmark   November 10, 2008 at 1:56PM
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Yes, Barb, keep us posted. I'll be thinking of you and praying for you & your dad. See if you can get another type of chair, as Linda suggested. Usually hospitals have padded lounge-type chairs for family members that choose to sleep overnight in their loved one's room. But, do take care of yourself. Don't do anything that will jeopardize your health.

    Bookmark   November 10, 2008 at 2:41PM
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Thank you for your kind thoughts. I went to see dad today and they only kept him to observe how he's doing. So far they haven't found anything that I know of. They were taking him to do a sonogram of his heart after lunch and I had to get back home.
In the ER they don't have any other chairs than the plastic ones and in the rooms the chairs are so deep that if I sit all the way back my feet are up in the air and the chair/ sleeper does not support my back at all.
Once I used three pillows behind my back trying to get comfortable and that still didn't help.
I need something like a lazy boy recliner.
I got to talk to one of the nurses and she looked back at when dad was in the hospital for his pacemaker, they had done a full cat scan and she said that they did not see anything wrong with his stomach as for a hernia. So that's good news but Convincing dad of that is a whole nother story.

While I was talking to her she said his dementia is most likely causing him to be confused on the pain. I could have jumped up and down when she said DEMENTIA. I have been trying to tell his doctors and the nurses at the hospital for two years now he has dementia. They did a test once and came back saying he was fine. Of course it was not the same type of test a neurologist does. Never have I ever felt soooooo at a loss trying to get something done or help for a loved one.
When I first had to put him into the rehab center I was told his dementia will come on faster I didn't know what to expect, you know how fast is fast. Would it be different for my dad, would it be slower and at frist I thought it might be but after this last move it showed up even more. As some have said moving one with dementia is worse and I feared him being kicked out of the AL after he through the big fit two weeks ago and one of the nursing homes told me that if he became combative they'd ask me to find him another place ASAP. That scares the day lights out of me.
The place he's in now I believe knows how to handle one with dementia better than other places around here.
Unless you have an unlimited amount of money then you can go to the top notch Home for dementia ran by a Doctor.

Hope you all have a good evening and a good week.

I have plans to go over to a friends at the end of the week to get some brug cuttings. I'm taking her some Hidden Ginger for trade.


    Bookmark   November 10, 2008 at 8:14PM
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Barb any news on your Dad??

    Bookmark   November 12, 2008 at 8:48PM
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Hi ogoopogo and everyone,

Dad is ok. The hospital didn't find anything seriously wrong with dad, thank goodness. They give him an oxygen machine due to being a little low sometimes. I think he wanted to go to the hospital because he knows the place so well. They told him he needed to do rehab and he said he wanted to do it there at the hospital, of course they told him they don't do it there and he had to go to a rehab place. When I went to see dad at the hospital he was sleeping and he looked so peaceful after all he's been through. I just let him sleep while I made a run over to his doctors office to ask questions.
The night he was brought back to the nursing home he was so confused he didn't know where he was. I walked into the home the next evening to see how he was doing and he asked me if he was in a hotel. Well, you can just imagine what a shock it was for me to hear how confused dad was. I told him he was back at the skill nursing home. He asked if he was close to a town that is nearly 100 miles away from where we live cause on the way to the nursing home he thought they had taken the south exit instead of the north exit.
He was scared to death, telling me he just knew he was going to be killed by the people there. He said they came with some pills not long after he'd gotten back and he thought they were giving him something bad. He said that he just gave up and thought if they were going to kill him he hoped it would be fast.
He did say that later he looked around the room trying to put things together. He looked into the drawers and seen his thing's in there and noticed the bathroom looked familiar but just couldn't quite get it through his mind where he was.
I went by today and he was much better and more himself as best as he could be that is. I know I'll be loosing him and I'm sure the first time he does not know who I am is going to be shocking, painful and hard to take. It was good to see he was better today. I is hard to hear dad talk like this and there's no way to really comfort him at least I don't know what to say. I did tell him I wouldn't have him in a place that would harm him but coming from the AL he doesn't feel safe.
I don't know what all went on at the AL but it sure left him scared and hurt. He said they laughed at him when he'd tell them he was having chest pains. He also said that they fed them green beans and noodles everyday.
I have seen them laugh at some of the thing's the residents did. Like one lady was sitting next to a window and she took the drape and draped it across her lap. They workers started playing with the lady asking her questions about the drape and the lady would make a commit and they'd laugh at her. Dad said they abused them by not letting them by not letting them have some food and sugar for tea or coffee.
I'm wondering if I should report them of not? I feel should. I know dad is very concerned for the ones still living at the AL home.


    Bookmark   November 13, 2008 at 11:46PM
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Glad to hear your dad is doing okay. I was just reading an article this morning about being diagnoses with Alzheimer as an early age. I put the link here for those that would like to read the article. It really makes ya realize how important it is to treasure each moment.
As for the "abuse" you witnessed at the AL facility, do you know the woman? Do you know how the staff and family interact with her on a daily basis? Guess what I am getting at is unless the woman was in obvious distress perhaps this is a way she interacts with the staff for attention..............just a thought. Like I told my mom and brother, I will worry about them and let other families worry about their loved ones. I don't have time or energy to get involved in others affairs. If there is abuse going on surely family members of other residents have noticed it also.
Keep us posted on how your dad is doing, sending cyber hugs ((((((((( ))))))))))

Here is a link that might be useful: When Alzheimer hits early

    Bookmark   November 14, 2008 at 7:32AM
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Barb, you see how your father is. Do you really think he is capable of knowing exactly what was going on at the other place? How much of what he "saw" was a product of his imagination? If he can imagine a stomach hernia or a heart attack, he could certainly imagine a host of other things.

When he asks things like, "am I in a hotel," say something like, Yes, isn't it nice or sunny or warm or whatever. Trying to correct him will only make him more upset. There are big holes in his knowledge of things. It's a common thing for patients like him to re-arrange facts so that they make sense, because the truth often doesn't.

Please get used to the fact that your father is no longer able to process logical thought. It will get worse. Just pat him gently on the arm, nod and say things like, "yes, yes, you are right." If he says thing like the pills are poison, just tell him that you will check on it and see what up. Don't try to convince him that the pills are OK. You can't convince him. He will think that, for some reason, you are lying to him. Later, he won't even remember you had the conversation about them.

My mother thought she was in a bank. She had no concept of what a nursing home was or that she lived there. Time had no meaning. She thought she went home everyday. She even managed to get to a phone to call a neighbor one day to come pick her up at the bank. She remembered the neighbor's phone number, what street the bank was on, everything except she didn't understand that she was not at the bank. We just agreed with her whenever something weird like this happened and changed the subject.

Another thing that is common with dementia patients is the concept of "home." Home is often the place where they grew up, where they felt safe and secure. It's where there family was. That's a certain feeling that they remember, and want to return to, it's not always the last place they lived.

Don't worry about his not knowing who you are either. You will be a familar face, that he can talk to, even if he can't recall your name or that you are a daughter. If he asks you what your name is, don't panic, just tell him as many times as he asks. It's Ok. It's one of those things that is going to happen over and over again.

Be as strong as you can and take care of yourself.

    Bookmark   November 14, 2008 at 9:21AM
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Agnes is right. Trying to correct them only frustrates them & you.

My Mother in law ( 92 ) used to insist that her nursing home was the home she worked at as a teenager ( she used to be a cook/waitress/housekeeper ) & her husband was waiting outside for her to pick her up for a date ( he passed away 15 years earlier ).

She would take her dusting rag & dust all the baseboards up & down her hall. Next minute she'd worry that she wasn't doing her share of the jobs & they ( nursing home ) was going to fire her & kick her out.

Next minute she'd be talking about how her sister had stopped by for a visit ( she lived in Denmark & had never been to Canada ) and see her sister left some real nice clothes for her ( Mom was always a snappy dresser )

I commented yes isn't it nice she's the same size as you & has such good taste..

Anyways you get the idea..

Look after yourself & hang in there.. Post/vent as often as needed.

    Bookmark   November 14, 2008 at 10:47AM
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Agnespuffin, For dad it was the only place he lived. His parents home was right next door to him. Grandpas had purchased the lot next to his home in the 40's and when my dad married he gave the lot to him as a wedding present. He was 6 months old when they moved into their home and then I was 6 months old when dad's house was finished and we moved in. So he's never lived anywhere else but for a short 3 years till the house was built. So when he thinks home he's thinking both places I'm sure of.
I'm not only going on thing's my dad said about the home. I'm going on what or how they treated me too. At first they would call me telling me my dad is crying for me. Now I have been told it's best to stay away for 2 weeks to let him get adjusted to the place. I would have to take thing's like his medicine and thing's to dad and instead of upsetting him during this time I would deliver the thing's in the back of the building and someone would come back to get them. They would again telling me, Oh your the daughter the father keeps crying for.
They had some of the male residents urinating everywhere and was told that they would put a depends on ones that have this problem and if that didn't stop it they'd put a bodysuit on them. They didn't do anything till I said something about it, then the next time I went over the ones that needed to be in a bodysuit was in one.

Has anyone else had this problem with an AL home?

    Bookmark   November 14, 2008 at 2:19PM
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Barb, if you want to take action, call your nearest Nursing Home Ombudsman program and report it there. The agency work with also has the local Ombudsman office, and they make routine unannounced stops at facilities and also deal with specific complaints. You don't have enough info for a specific complaint, but do report it. It will alert the Ombudsman staff to keep an eye on that facility.

(I used to be active here, but have been off the forums for quite some time, and I'm resigned in with a new name!! So, I've been lurking and meaning to stop in and say hello.)

Bes of luck, Barb, and take care of yourself.

Here is a link that might be useful: Long term care ombudsman

    Bookmark   November 14, 2008 at 5:35PM
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Hi, Barb! I know it's hard for you to see your dad's condition deteriorate. Unfortunately, it's where he is right now. I think the others gave you good advice. Just nod, smile, and chatter on about other topics. Your company is more important than making sure he's got all his facts right.

I just got back from a visit with my mom. She insisted several times that I was going to be in some show and that the staff told her I was sick and, therefore, she couldn't see me. She repeated this story over & over. Of course, I was not in a show, was not sick, and the staff did not try to keep her from me. I have no idea where this story came from -- a dream, a TV show, who knows? I told her that I hadn't been sick but that my husband had been ill and I had been taking care of him. She seemed to accept that without any trouble. You just end up doing what you can to ease their minds.

    Bookmark   November 14, 2008 at 8:06PM
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Hi Barb,

As agnespuffin amd shambo said, you will be the face he remembers. My MIL had Alzheimers and my FIL went to see her every day. It may have only been for 15-30 minutes to visit, depending on how she was doing. He also learned, as we did, to not correct her and just enjoy whatever he could. They would sit out in the courtyard in nice weather and she would put her head on his shoulder. She knew he was someone special, but didn't remember their 63 years of marriage. The love was still there, just not all the memories.

In the earlier days of her time in the nursing home, it was harder. Once she lost more of her memory and functioning, it was easier to just deal with what was happening. It was interesting to see her caring for the baby dolls. She had 4 kids and lots of grandkids and it was neat to see how she still loved babies, even without memories of her own. We just lived in whatever moment she was in. If it was an unpleasant one, we tried to distract or go for a walk down the hall to change her perspective.

Here at home, I like to read to my mom. While her memory is not too bad and doesn't have dementia, she can't read too well, but loves to listen to stories. Would your dad like that? Does he have any special interests that you could key on? It would give you time with him and might keep his mind on things other than complaining and his perceived health problems.

I just remembered something else we did for my MIL. She loved pictures, so she had a purse in which we put pictures of her family and friends and she would sit and look at those. Somewhere deep, there may or may not have been connections, but she did enjoy them.

Enjoy the times you can, and try to not dwell on the sad times.
Keep in touch,

    Bookmark   November 15, 2008 at 6:00AM
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Compare Nursing Homes at:


Go to this site, scroll down to search tools, in the right column you will see a link to compare nursing homes in your area, click on it and go from there. This is the Medicare site, it is FREE.

Here is a link that might be useful: Compare Nursing Homes

    Bookmark   November 15, 2008 at 8:01AM
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