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Looking for a sedative patch or other options

My elderly mother is in a nursing home in the memory support unit for those with dementia related issues. She has paranoid schizophrenia and is resisting bathing, likely her form of protesting being in the nursing home. She hasn't bathed in the 16 days since she'd been transferred there (from another nursing home she'd been at for a year) and is getting rather rank smelling. They would like to administer a sedative so she can be bathed, but the catch is that the nursing home says they can't force her to bathe or take meds, the definition of force being physically open her mouth for oral meds or hold her down for an injection. So far she hasn't been able to be reasoned with. My guardianship coordinator told me that they can put meds in her food without telling here they're there. The idea is to administer meds in a way that does not create a traumatic experience.

She doesn't eat much, so anything mixed in food or drink would have to be flavor neutral or palatable.

I was wondering if there is a sedative patch or some other way of sedating her per the above parameters so that she can be bathed? I'm looking for "outside of the box" thinking here. Any ideas would be appreciated.
5 Responses
4851940 tn?1515698193
I don't know if there are any patches available to calm your mother.  Have you spoken with your mum's doctor?  I would have thought that he would be able to prescribe something for your mother.  If she is already taking tablets, it is unlikely that she would notice an extra one.

I do understand that it is very difficult.
To be honest, it may not be anything to do with protesting that she is in this new care home, but a condition of the dementia.

My father has Alzheimer's and when he was first diagnosed with dementia we were able to coax him into having a bath.  As the condition deteriorated and he was diagnosed with Alzheimer's it got much worse to try and entice him to have a bath.  As far as he was concerned he had one "last week".  In fact the longest he went without having a bath had been a whole year.

When I used to look after him and my mother, it would take me a long time to persuade him and I would remind him that he was going to the hospital for a specialist appointment the next day (which he was) and that would he really want to go looking dirty and smelling?  Eventually, he would agree and we had to pour out a bath for him straight away before he changed his mind.  My mother didn't exactly help, because she would say "if he doesn't want one he won't".    I do not look after my parents any more because of my health issues, but I am sure that my siblings who are, are having the same problem with my dad (if not worse) about his hygiene.

It may be that mum is frightened about getting into the water.  
Have you tried by not telling her that she is going to have a bath and just lead her to the bath room?  I used to do that with my granny.  I didn't give her an option whether she wanted a bath or not.   With my dad it was a bit different because if pushed too much the wrong way he would become aggressive, look wild and frightened.  This is quite typical behaviour from people with Alzheimer's.  

If you mum, no matter what, won't agree to having a proper bath, will she accept having a bed bath with a wet flannel?  That would be better than nothing.

Good luck and best wishes.
Avatar universal
well clonazepam maybe a good ideia thought zyprexa would be better
Avatar universal
Thank you for your reply.

My mom is refusing all meds most of the time. Sometimes she will take some meds in the a.m., but is sharp and wants to know what she's taking (she was an RN and wants to know about what she's taking). She's not happy with the idea of being in a nursing home and typically throws fits to get her way... she can be very nasty.

I don't know if she'd be afraid of getting into the bathwater. She's very paranoid and independent. After dad passed, she estranged herself from her children and lived for the last five years w/o ANY utilities. She is stubborn and independent. When she was picked up by Adult Protective Services, she was using a walker. Ever since that day, over a year now, she has been in a wheel chair and has refused physical therapy. Bathing herself for the past year has been part of her independence... she consistently refused help there. Now she won't bathe and refuses help.
Avatar universal
Thanks for replying.

Here in the states, due to stroke increase risk, Zyprexa is not recommended for those with dementia related psychosis, which my mom has.

Clonazepam's side effects and long-term effects look pretty scary, behaviors my mom already exhibits and that we don't want aggravated.

I will ask her doc tomorrow morning. :o)
4851940 tn?1515698193
Has your mum had a brain scan done to find out if there are changes in her brain?  

By what you describe, sounds very much like my dad and granny were and I having spoken with care workers who look after the elderly with memory problems, this is very typical of the condition.

It certainly is worth talking to the doctor about your mother, but I doubt that there is anything he will be able to do to get your mother to have a bath.

My doctor wrote a note saying "Friday, Have a Bath" and I pinned that to the notice board that I put up in the living room and devised a system so that he would know which day it was and as you may have guessed - it did not help.

When he was admitted to hospital when he had his stroke, he did what he was told by the nurses and did have a bath - you can imagine the colour of the water!

Have you asked your mum why she won't have a bath?  It would be interesting to know her answer (but I can guess what it will be).

Don't be hard on yourself and worry yourself senseless over this.  This is very common.

All the best.

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