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
Your schedule is not important to your two-year-old, and you cannot convince her otherwise. So what can you do?
A child whose remains were dumped in a suitcase in the South Australian bush is believed to have been a girl aged between two-and-a-half to four.
An Argentinian mum and politician has caused a stir on social media after being filmed breastfeeding her baby.
It was 1am on a cold winter's night when I woke suddenly to the screams of my 12-month-old son. Our lives were about to change forever.
Inflatable and portable children's pools may be required to be sold with compulsory fencing to prevent backyard drownings, with some experts even floating the idea of a ban.
At 11.07am on April 2 this year, Sarah Marriott welcomed baby Sebastian into the world.
These kids' beds definitely fit the brief of providing personality and personal space for little people who are moving up in the world.
Since becoming noticeably pregnant, my son has taken more of an interest in the sibling he'll soon have.
In this age of political correctness, it seems the one subject still subject to discrimination is that of the Only Child.
A neighbour heard a child screaming before a baby was found dead, believed to have been stabbed, in a house in Newcastle.
So far, 206 Samsung washing machines have caught fire and some have exploded. But many remain in people's homes.
We all know that having a baby can turn your life upside down - and it can also bring a raft of new anxieties and worries.
Couples using IVF may be able to choose the gender of their babies and women could be financially compensated for donating their eggs.
Not too young, and not too old. That's reportedly the best age to get married. Not everyone agrees.
After giving birth, the last thing you want to think about is contraception. But you can get pregnant before your period comes back.
Parents of toddlers everywhere know the feeling. After working up the courage to take your child out for lunch or dinner in public you are rewarded with a mid-meal meltdown.
Two children were killed when pieces from their Malm furniture line tipped over.
If you're looking to introduce an organic element into your baby's nursery but want to step away from natural timber, we have the perfect alternative.
I am in no way qualified to advise women on how to cope with hyperemesis, but I've learnt some lessons that might be worth sharing with other partners.
Best friends share everything - and for these two life-long friends, that includes family.
Samuel Forrest didn't want his wife as a trustee of their baby Leo's half million dollar trust for her own "protection", it has emerged.
Men who become fathers experience weight gain and an increase in body mass index, a measurement of body fat based on height and weight, according to a new, large-scale study
She said the photo of a boy with Down syndrome in a washing machine was taken just for fun, but no one else was laughing.
An opulent high tea at a luxury Melbourne hotel has left 44 people with salmonella poisoning - including a pregnant woman, who went into early labour.
Would you know what to do in a fire emergency? How safe is your home and family?
Prince George's second birthday has been marked by the release of an official picture showing the toddler smiling as he is held by his proud beaming father.
Is it safe to use fake tan, hair dye and nail varnish during pregnancy?
The truth is, I can no longer deny that my walking, babbling, somewhat-independent little miss is no longer a bona fide 'baby'.
I'm not usually one who believes in love at first sight but that's exactly what happened when I first saw the Cybex PRIAM.
Get your free ticket to the Sydney Essential Baby & Toddler Show for September 25-27 - register online now.
Top 5 Articles
I believe that you get out of families what you put into them, and I will give mine my all.
I have had two postnatal psychotic episodes. The first when my eldest child was six weeks old, and another after my second child was born.
French names are always in fashion, but a few have risen in popularity in recent years.
A British woman who gave birth in Spain has told of her ordeal after spending weeks trying to convince medics the baby girl was hers.
Some friends of ours say that it's dangerous to have a dog around a newborn and that we should start looking for a new home for him. Is it?
First Apple and Facebook announced they would pay $20,000 towards the cost of their female employees freezing their eggs, now IBM in the US has come up with an innovative new policy aimed at retaining female employees.
The Duke of Cambridge opened up about family life and his plans for the future in an interview to mark his first day as an air ambulance pilot.
A simple photo taken in front of an evening fire gave new mother Sarah Bowers the power to save her baby's life.
Of all the advice people told me before having a baby, no one warned me about the amount of decisions involved.
Parents of toddlers all know the moment when realise your child is being suspiciously quiet. It can only mean one thing - trouble!
If you have trouble recalling the ages of Jeremy Ryan's seven children on The Voice, you're not alone. So does he.
Getting glasses can be a formative moment in a person's life.
When a mum of six was caught shoplifting nappies, clothes and shoes for her kids, the last thing she expected was for a stranger to pay for her haul.
The risk of having uncontrolled depression is far greater than the small increased risk of birth defects that may be associated with specific antidepressants.
Police have raided properties and arrested a number of people over a brawl at a child's birthday party at a play centre in Sydney's west.
Looking for a creative way to share some big news? Look to the skies, like this family did.
Little Owen DiCandilo's name means "young warrior", and it's a description that perfectly fits the inspiring 18-month-old
The exhaustion that comes with caring for young children often means romance between parents becomes a thing of the past.
I've been fat for pretty much most of life, besides a few crazy moments of being less-fat, but for the most part I've existed on this earth with a little more meat on my bones than desirable.
Since the dawn of civilisation, generation after generation of new parents have had to rely on instinct, trial and error - and sometimes get it wrong.
Get your free ticket to The Essential Baby & Toddler Show and save $20 - register online now!