General Nursing home for infirm but compos mentis

Louis

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5
My father is in his early 90s but getting more infirm. He is unable to properly look after himself.

But he is sharp as a button. I have over the years brought him to nursing homes to visit his friends and it seemed that everyone was gaga. He thought all the places were terrible.

Was it just the wards or homes I was visiting? Or do sharp people turn gaga in nursing homes?

Louis
 

noproblem

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1,797
Who can say. One person likes being in a nursing home, another doesn't. Personally, I would love it if my children took care of me if I was in that situation and they were able to do it. Unfortunately today, even those who can take care of elderly parents seldom do.
 

brianb

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101
My father is in his early 90s but getting more infirm. He is unable to properly look after himself.

But he is sharp as a button. I have over the years brought him to nursing homes to visit his friends and it seemed that everyone was gaga. He thought all the places were terrible.

Was it just the wards or homes I was visiting? Or do sharp people turn gaga in nursing homes?

Louis
In my experience, nursing homes generally have a mix of people with different mental abilities. You tend to notice the people who have more obvious needs though.

On your specific question about sharp people turning gaga, dementia is not contagious. However, there is a condition which results in sudden onset confusion in the elderly - it looks to the unprepared like instant dementia. It is sometimes (inaccurately imho) called Hospital Induced Delirium as it can happen someone shortly after they are admitted to hospital for something apparently unrelated to mental health. The root cause of the confusion is hard to pin down, but is frequently associated with a reasonably serious infection (such as a Urinary Tract Infection or Pneumonia) and possibly dehydration. The key difference with dementia is the very sudden onset, and thankfully, it is also completely reversible. After someone is admitted to a nursing home, there is a chance that they can pick up an infection, and encounter this sudden onset confusion, and turn, as you say, suddenly gaga. But it's not dementia, and with proper medical attention, will resolve in days or weeks.
 

Feemar5

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295
Can you look at getting home help from the HSE and topping it up with private hours ? Most nursing homes have a high percentage of people with some form of dimentia. A lot of elderly people like to stay in their own home especially if they don't need nursing care and I believe it is the best place for them.
 

AlbacoreA

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3,261
...Or do sharp people turn gaga in nursing homes?
...
That a bit like asking do people have lots of accidents in hospital because everyone in there is injured.

We had to put a relative of mine into a nursing home because they needed constant medical care. Sharp as button also
But unfortunately places that have more medical care, often have sicker people, and a high % with mental health issues.
Home help worked to a point, but really needed someone around 24/7
Works well for other relatives we have though.
An alternative is to pay privately for a private nurse. Costs much the same as nursing home.
But being at home alone, or just with one person, if someone is craving company. Older people often crave company.
Nursing homes often have day trips, daily activities, craft etc.
Another option is day centers. Where the person goes for the day but comes home at night.

In my experience you go through phases as an older person and your needs change.
Often they refuse help until they are past the point of managing at home.
We got a stairlift about 2yrs too late, person only used it for a couple of months, before they had to go into a nursing home.
Going through the same thing with another elderly relative again.

I'd say the nursing home improved their quality of life and extended it about 6 months. Not everything was perfect no.
Some would say around 60 people should downsize to a property more easily managed in case of future illness.
But no one wants to do that.
 
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