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#301187 - 08/20/22 09:00 PM Prepping with/for senior citizens
UTAlumnus Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 03/08/03
Posts: 1016
Loc: East Tennessee near Bristol
Anybody have any suggestions? Physically she's in good shape. Long term memory is good. Decision making is weak. Short term memory is the big problem.

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#301188 - 08/20/22 10:20 PM Re: Prepping with/for senior citizens [Re: UTAlumnus]
chaosmagnet Offline
Sheriff
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 12/03/09
Posts: 3719
Loc: USA
Checklists. If she is willing and able to train to follow checklists, then make really good ones.

The more things that are pre-configured and ready to roll, the better. Mrs. Magnet’s checklist for evacuating the house (in my absence) is very simple: People, dogs, emergency kit (in her car already), two bins, go.

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#301190 - 08/21/22 03:53 AM Re: Prepping with/for senior citizens [Re: chaosmagnet]
UTAlumnus Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 03/08/03
Posts: 1016
Loc: East Tennessee near Bristol
She probably wouldn't remember where the list is. Her GP recommended that she no longer drive a couple of months ago. He has also requested that I accompany her when she comes in due to not remembering what he tells her. Decision making is to the point where she will not pick a restaurant when I take her out.

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#301192 - 08/21/22 05:53 PM Re: Prepping with/for senior citizens [Re: UTAlumnus]
chaosmagnet Offline
Sheriff
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 12/03/09
Posts: 3719
Loc: USA
I'm not sure what else to suggest. I'm sorry.

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#301193 - 08/21/22 07:18 PM Re: Prepping with/for senior citizens [Re: UTAlumnus]
Eugene Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 12/26/02
Posts: 2947
IIRC the typical way to use checklists in that situation is to put the checklist in a place where its seen. Think like how businesses and office buildings have fire/tornado/earthquake evac maps posted at conspicuous locations.
Take an evac checklist as Blast's example. Have one mounted on the wall where she sleeps so if she wakes up to say a house fire the checklist is one of the first things she sees.

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#301194 - 08/22/22 02:00 AM Re: Prepping with/for senior citizens [Re: UTAlumnus]
RayW Offline
Addict

Registered: 12/06/01
Posts: 594
Loc: Orlando, FL
Unfortunately her preparations are now going to be relying on you. I don't want that to sound mean or harsh, I'm very sorry for what she and your family are going through. A lot of the prep's for young children will apply. Having lists of meds, Dr's, contact information, and important paperwork safely stored else where or ready to go. Important paper work for the elderly should also include wills, power of attorney, medical power of attorney, medical and life insurance information.

If she doesn't live with you granny cams will help. Even if she lives with you, cameras might be a good thing. If she becomes injured and you don't see it happen, when you ask and she says I don't know. Now you can look back and see what happened. Even if it is to just find her glasses. Check lists attached to places where she will see them may help. Using medication organizers. Keeping her in familiar surroundings can help keep her grounded and in a routine.

The reason I mentioned the camera's is a good friend of mine went through this with her mom. Having the cameras in the house allowed the mom to live in the "family" home for several years longer that she would have been able to otherwise. Of course you may also learn that her favorite breakfast is beer and ice cream. My friend stopped by several times a week to stock food and provisions for her mom so there was only a few bottles of beer at any given time. Along with that she could also monitor whether or not mom took her medications, if she didn't a phone call to gently remind her to do so.

You will need something to keep her occupied if you have to go somewhere or bug out. If you think it's bad when the kid's are asking "are we there yet". It's worse when mom asks for the tenth time "where are we going". This could be something as simple as asking something about the past she does remember, a favorite trip or vacation, something you did when you were little, a favorite movie, or old family pictures stored on a portable player. This will be something that you have to figure out and it will change as time goes on. A friend of mine confessed to me once that he felt horrible about whet he did to his mom who's short term memory loss now spanned several years. Several times a week he would loudly say "HAPPY BIRTHDAY MOM" and then hand her a stack of birthday cards from years gone by and she would dutifully read each on out loud, fold the card back up, place it on the bottom of the stack, read the next one, and roll all the way through the stack. When she came back to the first one she didn't remember that she had already read it, she could do this for hours. He said that this was the only thing that made her very happy and kept her engaged for several hours.

Aging parents can be a very difficult thing to deal with. For myself, I've had to start locking up the ladders so that they are not accessible. My 80+ year old mom thinks that it's still OK to get on the roof to sweep the leaves. Yes, it's good that she is still active but it's always in the back of my mind about what is she going to do next time.

I hope some of this has been helpful and not just depressing. I know this will require a great deal of time and patience for you and your family.

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#301195 - 08/22/22 02:49 AM Re: Prepping with/for senior citizens [Re: RayW]
UTAlumnus Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 03/08/03
Posts: 1016
Loc: East Tennessee near Bristol
Pretty much the same thing I was already thinking. I'm lucky that the person that built our house built it as essentially a duplex. Except for laundry and HVAC it's a complete one bedroom in a walkout basement and two bedroom two bath upstairs.

The biggest problem I'm running into right now are the scam calls and legitimate insurance companies wanting her to switch to their plan.

Yes, the repetition is challenging.

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#301196 - 08/22/22 12:34 PM Re: Prepping with/for senior citizens [Re: UTAlumnus]
RayW Offline
Addict

Registered: 12/06/01
Posts: 594
Loc: Orlando, FL
I'm glad that she is able to be close by and have her own space. I forgot about dealing with the phone. I'm sure that you are already changing her important contacts to your number and blocking any number that is not in her contact list. If she still has a land line there are blocking services. There are also answering machine size boxes that answers incoming calls before allowing the phone to ring and instructs the caller to go away if it is not for legitimate purposes, and then prompts the caller to dial 7 to get the call to go through. This one stops all robo calls and most of the in person spam calls.

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#301198 - 08/22/22 02:02 PM Re: Prepping with/for senior citizens [Re: UTAlumnus]
Doug_Ritter Offline

Pooh-Bah

Registered: 01/28/01
Posts: 2181
We aren't there yet, but it likely won't be too many years away. Some great suggestions here, thanks.
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#301200 - 08/23/22 12:25 AM Re: Prepping with/for senior citizens [Re: UTAlumnus]
KenK Offline
"Be Prepared"
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 06/26/04
Posts: 2198
Loc: NE Wisconsin
Having been there with several parents and in-laws, the care level indeed starts looking more and more like that of caring for a child, and progresses to a younger state. Stop driving. Remove access to ovens & burners. Remove phones. Remove control of finances/ bills ... Stop mail except for reading materials. Lessen/ simplify/ remove choices. Prevent ability to leave the building unaccompanied.

At some point the care becomes a FULL time 24 hour job, whether provided by family or commercially (expensive!!).

Prepping options are limited to your own lists to make sure they are getting the care they need.

For loved ones with memory problems, the best advice I've heard is to live in their world. Don't try to convince them they are wrong - it really isn't necessary, and confuses and hurts them. For example, I think I know what I'm talking about ... and my wife says that she agrees with me. I'm happy. Life is good.

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