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Old 01-19-2009, 03:36 PM   #1
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So many questions... PLEASE HELP

My husband was finally diagnosed with Dementia after 3 yrs. of bouncing back and forth from doctor to doctor. Half the doctors saying it was just his personality the other group saying it IS dementia He finally had two strokes this pass spring...so guess it doesnt really matter anymore what the diagnosis is.

My questions are:
1. Have you found having an aid come and help out everyday a good thing or should I just have an aid every other day?
2. When do you put them in a nursing home?
3. What happens if you own a home? If your only income is his S.S. check? Do you loose your home? Do they take ALL the S.S. check and leave you with no money?
4. Why does he have times when he is almost perfect (when he wants to do something) other times he doesnt know how to do anything?

Hope you can help,
Thanks

 
Old 01-19-2009, 05:16 PM   #2
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Re: So many questions...PLEASE HELP

start with help in your own home if you can. see how it goes and in time he may have to go to a nursing home. see how much you can handle as you will be the care giver. good luck and post again.

 
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Old 01-19-2009, 05:23 PM   #3
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Re: So many questions...PLEASE HELP

We (the usual group you will see over and over again) are so very sorry that you had to come here. You really need to do several things and you'll hear this repeated as well:

1) you must get a POA (power of attorney) over your husband
and
2) you must get a MPOA (medical power of attorney) over your husband
and if accepted in your state, it would be good to get a medical directive done but I'm not sure if he can do so not being clear-minded. So on his good days, get this done with a lawyer FAST

Then
you asked some questions:
a) Home health aid -- everyday or every other day. I err on the side of consistency otherwise when he does get real bad, he'll fight it if its a see-saw event. If you can get coverage, I'd vote for everyday

b) Nursing home -- when you should put them in? That depends on you. You need to know that doing so is tramatic whenever its done. I'm dealing with the issue now with my sister who is Mom's full-time Caregiver. You need to decide when it is that the person is a danger to himself and/or others. You need to decide when it is that the person can't do anything for themselves and must rely totally on the full-time 24/7 care of others.

As the lovely ladies on the site told me. Putting them there isn't a punishment or something that's bad. These people are there for their work shift after which they leave and de-stress and unwind to come back again another day with a smile on their face. When someone is someone's full-time caregiver on their own, they are always 'on' and get no down-time and it is very hard and draining on that caregiver even though they don't know it because its just something they do everyday. As time goes on and the person loses more abilities, the caregiver just makes adjustments and deals with the additional losses until its the very end. But in the meantime, the stress of being 'on' for the patient can potentially take the life of the caregiver or adversely affect their health.

c) Home -- since you are his primary care giver, they shouldn't be able to force you out of the home. You may have to sell a car if you have two and one is in his name. But if you are living on only his ssi check, be aware that they probably will attach that ssi check for his care in the nursing home.

I think this covers your questions and I hope you do well. Please, keep in touch with us. We all know the horrible tunnel you are about to enter and wish you more prayers form all of us.

Take Care
CaringSister 54

 
Old 01-20-2009, 06:07 AM   #4
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Location: Indianapolis, In. US
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ldw745 HB User
Re: So many questions...PLEASE HELP

Quote:
Originally Posted by caringsister54 View Post
We (the usual group you will see over and over again) are so very sorry that you had to come here. You really need to do several things and you'll hear this repeated as well:

1) you must get a POA (power of attorney) over your husband
and
2) you must get a MPOA (medical power of attorney) over your husband
and if accepted in your state, it would be good to get a medical directive done but I'm not sure if he can do so not being clear-minded. So on his good days, get this done with a lawyer FAST

Then
you asked some questions:
a) Home health aid -- everyday or every other day. I err on the side of consistency otherwise when he does get real bad, he'll fight it if its a see-saw event. If you can get coverage, I'd vote for everyday

b) Nursing home -- when you should put them in? That depends on you. You need to know that doing so is tramatic whenever its done. I'm dealing with the issue now with my sister who is Mom's full-time Caregiver. You need to decide when it is that the person is a danger to himself and/or others. You need to decide when it is that the person can't do anything for themselves and must rely totally on the full-time 24/7 care of others.

As the lovely ladies on the site told me. Putting them there isn't a punishment or something that's bad. These people are there for their work shift after which they leave and de-stress and unwind to come back again another day with a smile on their face. When someone is someone's full-time caregiver on their own, they are always 'on' and get no down-time and it is very hard and draining on that caregiver even though they don't know it because its just something they do everyday. As time goes on and the person loses more abilities, the caregiver just makes adjustments and deals with the additional losses until its the very end. But in the meantime, the stress of being 'on' for the patient can potentially take the life of the caregiver or adversely affect their health.

c) Home -- since you are his primary care giver, they shouldn't be able to force you out of the home. You may have to sell a car if you have two and one is in his name. But if you are living on only his ssi check, be aware that they probably will attach that ssi check for his care in the nursing home.

I think this covers your questions and I hope you do well. Please, keep in touch with us. We all know the horrible tunnel you are about to enter and wish you more prayers form all of us.

Take Care
CaringSister 54

 
Old 01-20-2009, 06:11 AM   #5
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Re: So many questions... PLEASE HELP

Thank you for your quick replies! I am not sure I am up to doing this, all I keep thinking is what they say....The Lord will not put anything on you that you are not able to handle .... with His help.

I am so happy to have found this message board, I know I write alot...but it helps to talk to people that are going thru the or gone thru my situation.

God bless you all

 
Old 01-20-2009, 07:40 AM   #6
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Re: So many questions... PLEASE HELP

Quote:
Originally Posted by ldw745 View Post

My questions are:
1. Have you found having an aid come and help out everyday a good thing or should I just have an aid every other day?
2. When do you put them in a nursing home?
3. What happens if you own a home? If your only income is his S.S. check? Do you loose your home? Do they take ALL the S.S. check and leave you with no money?
4. Why does he have times when he is almost perfect (when he wants to do something) other times he doesnt know how to do anything?

Hope you can help,
Thanks

When you first start on this path, the future seems overwhelming. So many things to find out, so much to learn.

Try taking it one day, one problem, at a time. It is true that these patients like routine, the unexpected throws them off. If you can get an aide to come in every day, that sounds like a good idea.

Usually a nursing home becomes necessary when the person becomes a danger to himself or others and/or is unable to function without 24/7 help. No relative should be expected to do this care by themselves. In some families, around the clock supervision can be done by taking turns. This is rare in our society where most people live far away from their parents. One person (most often a daughter, sometimes a daughhter in law, or even a son) gets 'stuck' with the day to day care --- and the others contribute financially if they are willing, or just with criticism and 'I could have done it better' types of comments - followed by 'but I can't take care of him because .... !'

If the person owns a home and there is no living spouse in it, it may have to be sold to pay his care. Rules vary from state to state.

Most AD patients have lucid moments when they sound almost normal, often while at a doctor's office...Gradually those moments become rare. Why it is so may have to do what part of the brain is used for certain activites. Example - my Mom could sing and remember verses of songs, but forgot the names and faces of family members.

A home health aide seems expensive, but is small compared to staying at a nursing home. if your Dad has money, use up his first. Then if he needs NH care later, he can get on Medicaid. We used our own money to pay for Home Health Aides for around 8 months; later we found out that if we had used Mom's money, she would have gotten on Medicaid sooner. There was no reason not to spend her savings for her own care. If he has nothing but a SS check, the state run Medicaid program will leave him a small allowance for his personal expenses and the rest, plus what they pay directly, goes to the NH.

I wish you luck on this journey. We are here to share our experiences in the hope that it may help somebody. My Mom passed away a year ago.

Love,

Martha

 
Old 01-20-2009, 09:42 AM   #7
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Re: So many questions... PLEASE HELP

I'm not sure about other states, but we are in Illinois and when my MIL had to be placed in a nursing home due to Alzheimer's and a massive stroke, my FIL was allowed to continue to draw both his SS and hers ... there was an annual income limit but their combined SS and small pension fell below the limit, so he was allowed to use all that income for his living expenses. I believe it was called spousal support when we applied for Medicaid for my MIL. They did not own their own their home or any vehicles/property, so their case was fairly simple. A good elder care lawyer can answer these questions for you and let you know what you can do now to make it easier later. I do know that documentation is key ... I took care of their budgeting and kept everything, so when we had to apply for Medicaid I had everything I needed, which made a stressful situation much less stressful. Please take care and look to these wise ladies for help and support as I have during the past few years. Their advice is invaluable!

 
Old 01-21-2009, 04:02 AM   #8
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Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Indianapolis, In. US
Posts: 5
ldw745 HB User
Re: So many questions... PLEASE HELP

Quote:
Originally Posted by Martha H View Post
When you first start on this path, the future seems overwhelming. So many things to find out, so much to learn.

Try taking it one day, one problem, at a time. It is true that these patients like routine, the unexpected throws them off. If you can get an aide to come in every day, that sounds like a good idea.

Usually a nursing home becomes necessary when the person becomes a danger to himself or others and/or is unable to function without 24/7 help. No relative should be expected to do this care by themselves. In some families, around the clock supervision can be done by taking turns. This is rare in our society where most people live far away from their parents. One person (most often a daughter, sometimes a daughhter in law, or even a son) gets 'stuck' with the day to day care --- and the others contribute financially if they are willing, or just with criticism and 'I could have done it better' types of comments - followed by 'but I can't take care of him because .... !'

If the person owns a home and there is no living spouse in it, it may have to be sold to pay his care. Rules vary from state to state.

Most AD patients have lucid moments when they sound almost normal, often while at a doctor's office...Gradually those moments become rare. Why it is so may have to do what part of the brain is used for certain activites. Example - my Mom could sing and remember verses of songs, but forgot the names and faces of family members.

A home health aide seems expensive, but is small compared to staying at a nursing home. if your Dad has money, use up his first. Then if he needs NH care later, he can get on Medicaid. We used our own money to pay for Home Health Aides for around 8 months; later we found out that if we had used Mom's money, she would have gotten on Medicaid sooner. There was no reason not to spend her savings for her own care. If he has nothing but a SS check, the state run Medicaid program will leave him a small allowance for his personal expenses and the rest, plus what they pay directly, goes to the NH.

I wish you luck on this journey. We are here to share our experiences in the hope that it may help somebody. My Mom passed away a year ago.

Love,

Martha

 
Old 01-21-2009, 04:05 AM   #9
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Re: So many questions... PLEASE HELP

Thank you Martha for your reply. I am sorry your mother passed, I am sure you miss her alot.

hugs

 
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