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Mum With Demetia

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hannah40 | 20:50 Tue 15th Dec 2020 | Body & Soul
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My mum nearly 90 had developed dementia in the last 3 months. We are on our way to getting a formal diagnoses.
My concern is I went in tea time today and took tea with me for both of us . She was so Hungry I checked her fridge and realised she hadn’t eaten since dinner she had cooked the meal and put it back in the fridge.
If I were to pay some one to go in at lunch time and check she has eaten I don’t think she would feel comfortable with eating in front of people.
I bathed her last week and she was all skin and bone.
I come home and get so upset I don’t know anything about dementia and am finding it difficult to cope.
I do not want to put her in a home as this is not what she wants.
She has a beautiful flat looking out on to the sea on the south coast.

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I realised I haven’t asked a question I really need advice on how to deal with the not eating situation .
She won't go into a home, she won't eat in front of someone she doesn't know, she is all "skin and bone " then there is little more that you can do.

With your description, I would question the diagnosis of dementia.
I know this sounds weird but it worked for my Mum and I have seen it work for others in the same situation (I used to work with older people in their own homes) What we did was to leave food around....the kind of thing she could pick up and snack on in passing....grapes, chocolates, savoury biscuits.....anything really that she can snack on in passing and which won't go off over a day or two. I agree its not a healthy diet but anything to get her to eat something while you get sorted....and you will need to get sorted. You say on your way to a diagnosis, can I ask what you mean by that and who is involved? She certainly will need care and support and more than you or any one person, can do even if you lived with her.
I do sympathise, its horrible for children to see their parents deteriorate with this dreadful illness.
It seems like your mum needs some help with her living at home.
You should investigate arranging a ‘needs assessment’ from your local council who will assess what is required and whether your mother will pay for none, some or all of the care costs.

See this link here for more information:-
https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/social-care-and-support-guide/help-from-social-services-and-charities/getting-a-needs-assessment/

That needs assessment will be a good start in assessing as to whether the care your mum needs can be supplied at her home – it appears to me that she would need carer visits three times a day (morning, noon and night) to check she is feeding, bathing and taking required medication etc.
I used to live on a sheltered housing complex and there were two lovely ladies who looked after people who sound like your mum. They were paid by the hour and prepared meals for their clients, helped them with bathing, that sort of thing. They were more than carers, they were friends. If you could get something similar
arranged I’m sure it would help.
How often do you see her? Your post isn't very clear as to her current living arrangements. It is not unusual for anyone to miss the occasional meal
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I see her every day. I also work full time.
We have a CT scan to go for next.
A lady going in apart from me would be good.
A needs assessment sounds like a plan.
Thanks
It might be worth looking through the advice offered on the web pages of the two main charities supporting dementia patients and those who care for them.

They both provide telephone helplines too:

https://www.dementiauk.org/

https://www.alzheimers.org.uk/
At her age it may be she is just losing interest in things. But there may be something she is not telling you. Extreme weight loss in an older person would be worth a few questions about does she get pain when she eats or afterwards. Or other symptoms. A good example was someone who didn't want to eat for a reason as simple as ill fitting rubbing dentures.

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