Occasionally you read about people with dementia who have died from malnutrition or dehydration, even when being cared for in a nursing home, hospital, or by caregivers. You cannot believe that such a situation has occurred, that it must be an obvious case of abuse. However, dehydration and malnutrition can develop insidiously, especially where people are confused, unable to recognize the usual signals of hunger or thirst, or unable to communicate their needs. People with dementia are particularly at risk.
Often the causes of dehydration are complex. Confusion may be central but there are often other causes, some of which are easy to remedy or institute. Drinks being placed out of easy reach can be moved closer. Fluid charts can indicate the amount of fluid needed and then can be filled in whenever a drink is given.
Medical investigations into the cause of dehydration may be required. Someone may be taking medication that causes excessive fluid los...
In the spring of 2007, a friend loaned me the book, Life of Pi . To tell you the truth, it took awhile to get into the book, but author Yann Martel’s premise stays with me to this day: What story do you tell about circumstances in your life? And does that story match up with what really happened? And are there any consequences if the story you select story and actual happenings don’t mesh?
Why write about this in a sharepost for this site? I guess that two people flash in my mind – Gloria and Lorraine. I met Gloria, another resident in the nursing home locked unit where Mom waived for awhile. Mom and Gloria hit it off pretty quickly, chatting about different things and often dining together. And I really liked Gloria, a petite woman who was always very sweet to me and who had enough presence that many thought she was a visitor to the locked unit (and would help her get out the locked doors).
So it surprised me when the nursing staff shared with me that Gloria’s ...
Giving care to people who are dying and who also have early or mid stage Alzheimer's is easier if you are aware of a number of difficulties that cognitive impairment has on their experience and behavior. Alzheimer's does not make death any easier or more difficult for caregivers. As your loved one enters the last weeks and days of their life there is a lot to contend with. Sorrow, anticipatory bereavement and sometimes pleasure when an interaction/time spent remind you of the loss to come. I have put together some information that has been helpful to me that may be useful to you.
As well as being a symptom of Alzheimer's and other forms of dementia, confusion is also a symptom of physical conditions such as poor oxygen levels, common for example in heart and lung disease. High levels of chemicals poisonous to the body, for example, high urea and creatinine common in kidney disease and in diseases of the brain such as tumors, may can also cause confusion....
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