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Elder care and health

Posted by pineviewplanter (My Page) on
Tue, Mar 6, 07 at 9:58

My husband is 78 years old and likes to sleep at least 12 to 14 hours each day. He does wood working on a small time basis and loves it, and is full of energy while doing it. Then he will come in and sit for a few moments and then say he feels awful and goes to bed for an hour or two. He will inevitably do this about an hour before supper is ready most days. I have learned to adjust my cooking to accomodate his sleep schedule.

Another thing, he seems to have loose bowels but complains of having to use the bathroom at least 4 or 5 times each day. If he even passes gas, it comes out of him and he refuses to use depends or any other disposable unit. So, we have a diaper pail for him to place his soiled underwear in. I do have to clean feces from the floor and area surrounding the commode each day. He blames it on the cat.

This is the same man that once told me that people do not need to sleep more than 6 or 7 hours a day and those that do should be put into a home because they have become unproductive human beings.

He is a sweet Christian man and I am in a quandry as to what to do. I have spoke to his doctor and the doctor examined him and said he was quite normal and in fact in wonderful condition for his age. He does have emphysema and continues to smoke, although he has cut that waaaaay down.

Can anyone give me any ideas here ???


Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Elder care and health

The emphysema could be the reason why he is sleeping so much. He just isn't getting enough oxygen. This will probably get worse. I wouldn't call anyone with that disease in "wonderful condition."
I would suggest you since he messes up the floor that you tell him help clean it up. He needs to accept the responsibility for his accidents instead of blaming on the cat. The cat can't soil his clothes. Perhaps being responsible for the clean up will encourage him to wear the disposables.

RE: Elder care and health

I agree with Agnes, he needs to help clean the floor. Doing the laundry is bad enough, right?

I also agree with her about the emphysema possibly causing him to be so tired, especially after he has been exerting himself in the workshop, and that would be a good thing.

Has he seen a pulmonary doctor? He might need to be on oxygen. I'm sure he would not welcome that, but it might help him put in more time in the workshop.

Also, about the loose bowels and trips to the bathroom, do you think he is eating something to trigger this? Too much of something, maybe? Possibly a dietary change would help here.

Poor kitty!! Taking the rap for your DH! LOL! I do not mean to make light of your situation, just thought it seemed funny. Hope I didn't offend.

He's a lucky man to have a caring wife. Best wishes...

RE: Elder care and health

Thanks bunches for replying. I am going to contact the cardiologist and have him recommend a geriatric specialist for him to see. But I have to do this so that it does not seem to be MY idea. Hubby thinks I fuss over him too much. Last night at church, I noticed that his fingers appeared to be kind of blue and looked a tad swollen... but after a bit of prayer and praise, they looked okay again. I have a retired nurse that checked them out and she said they did not look too bad, but might have a bit of circulation problems... especially when he sits for extended periods.
I wish there was a way to check his oxygen levels at home..

Thanks bunches,

RE: Elder care and health

Keep a watch on those fingers. Look at his fingernails and toenails. They should be pink. If they are blueish, it's a good sign that there is a lack of oxygen going to his hands and feet. Around the mouth is another place to watch. Is he on supplemental oxygen??? It may be time to start. Smoking will cause the bood vessels to constrict so that the oxygen supply is reduced even more.

RE: Elder care and health

He really got po'd with me today. We went to WalMart to get paint and he said he would go to the Pharmacy to check on our RX's.. okay, no problem.. but then he found me in the dairy aisle and asked me about the RX's.. I said nothing, but simply went to pick them up...and asked him to wait there for me. He followed me all the way to the pharmacy... lol... But he looked a bit peaked, so I asked him if he felt alright, he leaned over and yelled that He felt fine and that he was NOT a baby. He stalked out of the store, and when I found him, he was busy sucking on his infernal pipe. I told him I would finish up the shopping and be right out. He told me not to hurry because he want to finish his pipe off. I have to open all the car windows when he lights up in the car. I cannot stand the stench of tobacco burning.. ugh!! And I get light headed and physicaly sick to my stomach from it...

He got into the car and lit up and I opened the windows,.. He promptly shut them and said he was cold and to leave them shut. He was NOT the least bit cold, but just being a pain in the derriere.. just to show me he would smoke and I had to put up with it.

By the time I got home, I was sick as a dog... and ended up having to take something to calm me down... xanax..

I have to find some way to get him checked.. this is begining to really worry me. His hands are okay today, no blueness or gray look.. nice and pink and healthy looking..

He is NOT on supplemental oxygen and in a way I am glad, because I do not want him blowing us up by lighting his pipe while on oxygen. I think if he Has to go on oxygen, then his pipes will have to go. And I will beg his doctor to tell him that....

Say a prayer for us would you. God can help in this situation and so I must keep that in mind too.

Thanks bunches,

RE: Elder care and health

I'm sorry you are having so much trouble. Obviously he does not enjoy being babied or fussed over. Maybe you should lay off for a bit if possible. Of course, if he has blue fingers or other symptoms of concern, that sounds worth discussing. Do you need to see a geriatric specialist yourself? If so, then maybe you could pull him in on the idea for himself.

It was not nice of him to smoke in the car with you there. Next time could you suggest you wait in the car or shop a little longer while he smokes outside? That would make me sick too. In a happy moment, maybe you could ask him kindly not to do that again.

Best wishes...

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