Jump to content
Help for an elderly relative
6 replies to this topic
Posted 18 February 2013 - 12:23 PM
I have an 88 year old grandmother who I'm starting to get quite concerned about, and I'm not sure where to start with getting some assistance for her. She lives alone about ten minutes away from me, and has done since my grandfather passed away almost six years ago. Both her sons passed away over ten years ago, so there's no parent/child relationship to deal with this sort of thing. My aunt and myself keep an eye on things and keep in regular touch with her, and we both see her about once every week or so.
Basically, she's starting to get extremely forgetful. Conversations with her involve her repeating herself almost constantly, and she seems to have no realisation that she's doing it. She's starting to lose track of dates a little bit as well. She is incredibly stubborn though, and fiercely independent. I don't really know where to start as far as working out if she needs assistance, what assistance she can get, and convincing her to take it.
Has anyone had experience in these sort of situations, or know where I can start? We're in Sydney.
Posted 18 February 2013 - 12:32 PM
Oh dear, it's so hard when someone is on their own and things start to change.
If she is willing to do something, I would start with her GP and see if he can refer to her local Aged Care Assessment Team (not sure if they've changed their name, but I'm pretty sure there should be someone who can come and visit her at home and look as how she is doing and what issues might affect her safety and ability to stay at home.
If she isn't willing to start that process herself, then I would call her GP (if you know who that is) or if you don't, then maybe call her local council and see what Senior's services they have available. Really, you need to get her into the system so she can get assistance if she needs it.
I've just read your post again and note that she's very stubborn, that can make it tricky!
You might like to call the Alzheimer's association in her area - not that I'm saying she has Alzheimer's but they are likely to know what kind of services might help and may have some tips on how to approach her and get her linked in with some more support.
Posted 18 February 2013 - 12:36 PM
I would start with her GP too.
Good luck, it's such a tricky thing to deal with.
Posted 18 February 2013 - 12:40 PM
Yes, I agree with Rubybelle, she has good suggestions. In NSW the GP can organise an assessment team to come out and see what sort of services the elderly person is in need of. Also the GP can do stuff like organise with the council to have the garbage bin taken out and brought back in - sometimes even little things like this make a tremendous difference. It all helps.
Also Legacy have welfare services. They can organise for a welfare worker to come out and see how the person is doing, offer some suggestions and some practical help.
Edited by SarahM72, 18 February 2013 - 12:44 PM.
Posted 18 February 2013 - 12:45 PM
Local councils sometimes have a community/senior welfare person. My Dad has them to organise things for him.
Posted 18 February 2013 - 01:07 PM
The very first step would be taking her to the GP to have a full health assessment done - including a dementia screen. Memory changes are not a normal part of ageing - sometimes it can be as simple as a nutritional deficiency or it can also be the onset of dementia. Many people live at home alone with memory changes, the key is to get in early to optimise safety and reduce risks.
Once the dementia screening and health assessment has been done, a call to the local council for Home Services and perhaps a referral to ACAT (which can be made by anyone - but your grandmother has to consent) might be useful.
I often used to explain it as trying to make sure someone safely lives at home for as long as possible.
Posted 18 February 2013 - 03:55 PM
I had a feeling the GP was the right place to start. Getting her consent is going to be the tricky part - she is either deeply in denial or genuinely doesn't think anything is wrong. Just last week she misplaced her credit card and couldn't understand why we were at her to call and report it. It was found safe in her house, but the what ifs are starting to scare me. She's in a pretty good financial position compared to many her age, and if it came to needing care it could be paid for, but I worry about her doing silly things with money and it not b ring there when she needs it.
Sorry, that got a bit rambling. I'm also p*ssed off that its all on me and my aunt, but that's another story. I'll check into what council offers and find some info on the ACAT stuff, then talk to my aunt about our next step
1 user(s) are reading this topic
0 members, 1 guests, 0 anonymous users
As I roll into the second half of "Pregnancy: The Sequel", here is breakdown of the differences I have found thus far.
Coming home to a clean house was a pleasure – and yet, I felt uneasy.
When Alecia Donoghue found out her baby would need hearing aids she worried about him becoming the target for schoolyard bullies.
The Australian Federal Police has released the following information to locate some of Australia's missing children through the Family Law Court.
British actress Keira Knightley has become a first-time mother.
Couples with fertility problems have little way of knowing which IVF clinics are the best performers despite significant differences between clinic success rates.
They met, fell in love and got married. Then, just like couples everywhere, Simon and Vicky Moore decided it was time to have a baby.
Amongst the useless, ill-informed advice we're given as new parents, many of us also receive nuggets of wisdom that make our lives just that little bit easier.
You can see it all now: glowing mumma with her gorgeous babe ... you know exactly what you're going to be like. Or perhaps you know exactly what you're not going to be like.
A couple is expecting their fourth set of twins in five years.
We had six adults standing there, so I felt like I could relax a bit. After all, what could go wrong with so much supervision?
A Sydney barrister who survived the Lindt cafe siege has named her newborn daughter after her best friend who died in the tragedy.
These days mothers need more than just traditional career advice.
Shopping centres, restaurants, the White House ... the list of places toddlers like to throw tantrums is endless.
Here are some foods to eat in order to escape feeling ghastly and gassy.
My son is a worrier by nature. I learnt long ago that it was completely pointless to say to him "Don't worry about it!".
The combined impact of the two budgets for low and middle income people was "devastating", new analysis by the Australian Council of Social Service shows.
As the winter chill starts to arrive, NSW Health is urging pregnant women to get their flu shots.
A 65-year-old German woman, who already has 13 children, has given birth to quadruplets.
It's not just waiting periods that couples need to consider - there are other factors to consider when thinking about health insurance.
Australian model Nicole Trunfio has taken the concept of multitasking to a fashionable new level for Elle Australia.
Parents have been warned about the dangers of letting babies sleep in bouncers and swings following the death of a three-month-old girl.
Sleep deprivation is a real hazard of caring for a baby. But there are ways to manage the challenges of fatigue better.
It's not all the parents, and it's not all the time, but there is often at least one doing it. And sometimes, that 'one' is me.
More than 80,000 faulty Samsung washing machines pose a fire threat in homes throughout Australia despite a nationwide recall of the machines.
Despite its widespread nature, there is still a great amount of mystery surrounding PND - and it's important to try unravelling as much of that as we can.
If the last time you assessed your health cover was five years ago, there?s a chance it may no longer suit your needs. To ensure it?s still right for your family, click here for seven questions to ask.
Top 5 Articles
Many women in labour don't use gas effectively and suffer more side effects than benefits. Here's how to get the most out of this pain relief option.
We cannot place all children who are sick in a bubble till they recover, but we can give other parents a choice about exposing their kids to them.
Now that the colder months are here, Essential Baby as all the information you need for staying healthy and happy during the chilly season.
Home and Away actress Ada Nicodemou has opened up about the loss of her stillborn baby.
Before you start tracking your menstrual cycle and reading up on the best positions to get pregnant, there are a few other things you may want to consider.
Cricket legend Glenn McGrath and his second wife Sara are expecting their first child together, thanks to IVF and a delicate surgical sperm retrieval process that helped the couple to conceive.
The mother of disgraced wellness blogger Belle Gibson has accused her daughter of lying about her childhood in an attempt to garner public sympathy.
A new mum claims a doctor left his mobile phone inside her after delivering her baby via caesarean section.
I want my kids to know that no matter what happens in life, you can still be who it is that you've always wanted to be.
I had this innate 'mum' moment the other day.
Katherine's father will die in prison for the horrifying sexual abuse of his daughter. Yet she is the one with the true life sentence.
Mothers, babies, the health system and the wider society are going to pay the price of this new budget.
Baby Jai Bishop has lived at Starship Hospital for the past seven months, with his parents flying back and forth from Hokitika, 1100km away, to be by his side.
Life On Mars
We are all responsible for our own behaviour. Telling victims to harden up is wrong.
The biological father of baby Gammy has reportedly tried to access charity money raised for the little boy's medical costs.
It?s all very well to encourage women to work if they choose to, but how can the measures lead to increased workforce participation when women are once again left holding the baby?
After seven years of wishing, hoping, crying, punching pillows and shouting "why me?!", the end result is more than I ever thought possible.
Whether you're after a new car for a growing family, a bigger house, or are just fixing up your finances, here are the basics on borrowing.
A mum has shared a graphic photo of her skin cancer treatment as a warning to others.
We can certainly gain higher levels of happiness when we become parents, but the trick is to not get overwhelmed by the pressures of raising our kids.
It's obvious these people dote on their pets, but they're barking up the wrong tree.
Top baby names
The numbers are in and we can now bring you the 2014 top baby name list for Australia.