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
Most people who are trying to get pregnant know that the best time to conceive is in the few days after ovulation.
A cruise with your family is among the most absurd settings for a miscarriage, but it is certainly not the worst.
A 22-year-old woman who is pregnant with her third child has had her requests for a tubal ligation denied because doctors believe she is too young.
When a pregnant woman is infected, the likelihood that her foetus will be infected is about 50 per cent.
If you're hoping to conceive, one of the most important things you need to know about is ovulation.
I remember the first time I felt mum guilt, within days of having my first child. The feeling was so intense I rang my own mum to debrief, hoping she'd tell me I wouldn't feel this way very often.
When it comes to motherhood, actress Kristen Bell is her own superhero and she thinks other mums should be too.
In a world of ever-shrinking gadgets, it's no surprise prams are getting smaller. We put the record-holding GB Pockit through its paces.
The gorgeous Bombol Bouncer is back - and boasts two chic new colours to boot.
Looking for a gift for the wine lover in your life - or just something for yourself?
Pinky Mckay joins us again at the Essential Baby & Toddler Show presented by Blackmores with her expert baby settling advice. Register now for your free ticket.
The best part about our outdoor adventures? It makes my husband and I better parents, since we're happier while adventuring.
A good samaritan saved a mother and baby from being seriously injured by crashing her own car into theirs.
Returning to work after having a baby can be daunting, and when you're experiencing postnatal depression or anxiety it can seem even more overwhelming.
Background noise from the radio or TV might be making it harder for your toddler to learn learn new words.
Teresa Palmer is basking in pregnancy glow as she awaits the arrival of her new baby.
Top 5 Articles
Pre-book & Save 50%. Get your tickets now for Kidtopia Festival. 7-9 October 2016 Parramatta Park, Sydney.
H2O is one of the necessities of life, but for babies a seemingly harmless amount of water can be fatal.
So much parenting advice is geared towards having your first baby, but what's it like having a baby when you already have children?
Fans of The NeverEnding Story – of which there are certainly plenty – went crazy for these plush Falkors when they first went on sale last year.
I thought I had prepared myself for motherhood. Then my baby girl arrived and knocked everything flat.
People love to warn you about what to expect when having a baby, but they can be way off when it comes to the reality.
Motherhood is wonderful ... except when it sucks.
There is no doubt seeing their child smile for the first time is an unforgettable moment for parents everywhere.
Breast is best, except when it's not. And in our case, it most definitely wasn't.
The photos are heartbreaking and almost too difficult to look at, but Kayley Burke is begging other parents to take notice.
In news that will make expectant mums jump for joy - and reach for a block of Cadbury - scientists have revealed chocolate could provide health benefits during pregnancy.
If you're in any way challenged in the follicle department, prepare to feel a jolt of envy - at a two-month-old baby.
While meeting with a lactation consultant can make an enormous difference to a new mother, it's not a service that is available through the public health system.
One mum has learnt a harrowing lesson about the best way to cut grapes to make it safe for toddlers and little kids to eat.
Lately I've been thinking about the caesarean stories and the brave women who birth their children with strength and beauty.
It's stressful to be the one who is holding your baby most of the day, but it's even more stressful to wonder, 'am I doing something wrong? Or am I creating bad habits?'
Free ticket offer
The Essential Baby & Toddler Show, presented by Blackmores, will be held in Sydney on 23-25 September. Register for your free ticket now to save $20!