When is the right time to organise a nursing home for your parents


When is the right time to organise a nursing home for your parents

The question has unfortunately been raised, “Is it time to organise a nursing home for my husbands mother?” It is an emotional ordeal as up to this point, we have exhausted all avenues to keep her in the family home. Mum has started showing signs of dementia and we are starting to have trouble managing the dementia care at home. At the moment we can’t give her what she needs and be there for her 24 hours day when she may need us the most. Since her husband passed away she has been terribly lonely and I wonder if that stress has brought on the dementia. The family and I have started to question are we making things worse for her, by not being able to supply social contact, daily. She must feel isolated and afraid. Could she be happier in a nursing home and could it improve her quality of life?

Besides the time we have no professional knowledge or skills that a nursing home would be able to offer her and I am honestly starting to feel she would be better cared for by people who know what they are doing, a skilled nursing home to be there for her 24 hours a day? I would love to be there for her, but with my working life it makes it impossible to offer her what she now needs.

Since mum was diagnosed, I’ve really started to notice how it affects her mentally and it is starting to raise emotional and serious safety concerns. Her moods have started to change, as though she is suffering from depression and it is damping her once positive attitude. She used to laugh and joke and she rarely laughs anymore. She tends to be confused with the simplest things, its painful to see it upsetting her. Last week we got a call in the middle of the night and her neighbours found her wondering on the street. I was shocked to think of what could have happened, we are just lucky it wasn’t any worse. It is so deliberating and it pains me to see her go through this. That was a turning point and forced us to look into alternatives for her wellbeing. I read a great article online at The Age it really helped me throughout the decision making process.

We also decided to approach our family doctor to share our concerns. He confirmed that due to the safety concerns it’s time to seriously consider other alternatives, such as a nursing home. He went on to mention that some of the Deception Bay residents put into care had responded really well to the social activity they receive in the nursing home.

It was a really tough thing to approach your loved ones on what options their mother & grandmother are now faced with. They don’t want to loose the family home just as much you and her. That is where all our family memories were made, birthdays and anniversaries. You begin to feel like all the nasty stereotypes and you become overwhelmed with worry about how your mum and the family will take the news. It’s definitely not an easy decision to make, one of the hardest I’ve been faced with in this lifetime.

We discussed it at length with the all the family members. A decision was made to visit Deception Bay nursing homes in particular ones that catered for all levels of care. Our minds would be stress free knowing mum could become familiar with the staff and have a safe transition through all the stages and levels of care needed.

After talking to the residents at the nursing home all the stress and worry started to alleviate. They really enjoyed it there. The main thing that stuck out was the fact that, visits could now be fun again. There were no responsibilities and they could just enjoy time with their families rather than fussing over their cleaning, cooking and washing.

They also mentioned that the downsizing was much easier than they first thought and all the belongings they decided on, fit into the room easily. Downsizing was one of my main concerns as mum still has so many beloved treasures from her life, how do we fit a whole lifetime into the one room with all it memories. This monumental task was now looking a little easier to manager.

Everyone’s situation is uniquely different, however, at the same time they are so similar because we all love our mothers and fathers terribly. And we want only the best for them. If you are getting the same answers to your questions ‘is it the right time to put my parent in aged care?’ And you want only the best care for your mum and/or dad. I would highly recommend a visit to a nursing home to alleviate some concerns and stigmas. There really are some great nursing homes around these days.

*Palm Lake respects privacy of the stories and letters provided to us. Therefore, these stories are written as fictional letters based on real life encounters.