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Labels, labels everywhere
Internal Administrator
Posted: Thursday, January 5, 2012 3:27 PM
Joined: 1/14/2015
Posts: 40463


Originally posted by: maebee

Anyone can tell when my MIL is visiting with us. I have labels everywhere! SIL says Mom can't do this, or that, but at my house she is very independent( as much as possible. I have labeled her eyebrow pencils to prevent her from using it for lipstick, and vice versa with the lipstick(oh, the sight of orange eyebrows!). I put "FOR EYEBROWS ONLY",or "LIPS ONLY" and it works. I label everything I can. Toothpaste, eyeglass holder, facial cream, toothbrush. I have signs on the outside of my cupboards-"CUPS", BOWLS","GLASSES", etc. She can actually get herself a cup of coffee if I have remembered to put the sign on. She can help set the dinner table. I have one of those "Brother-P-touch" labelers, and the largest letters are very big.I have even been able to put labels on the "off" and "on" for the remote control, and she is proud that she can do it herself. She only watches one channel unless I change it, but she doesn't mind. I have been having trouble with her dressing. I will help her choose an outfit, leave the room so she can change, then a few minutes later she is asking me what she is to wear, and she is digging through the drawers. This time I am going to paperclip a note to her clothes and see if it works.
Maebee
Anonymous
Posted: Thursday, January 5, 2012 3:27 PM
Originally posted by: msdaughter

Hi,
I have thought of this idea too to help my mom. I live 3+ hours away and visit on weekends. My dad has taken over doing almost eveything and jumps in where it might take my mom longer. This often ends up with my mom being mad at my dad and my dad frustrated, then Ihave to try to sort things out over the phone. She can read, and I know if things were labeled, especially when it comes to her personal care items, it would be much easier for her. We had blue eyebrows once! It is frustrating to not be able to do what I can see would be helpful and getting them to accept it. I will be spending part of my summer vacation with them and am hoping to be able to do some things. I am bringing a label maker with me and will use all my best skills to get it to work. I am especially concerned about my mom's inability to make phone calls in case there was ever an emergency with my dad, if I could do a 1 touch labeling on the phone or color code the numbers, so she could use it independently, then I would feel better.
Thanks for the note that it has worked! It
is nice to hear positive things!
joni- california
Anonymous
Posted: Thursday, January 5, 2012 3:27 PM
Originally posted by: Mom's Advocate

Maebee - I am so with you on this. I am caretaking for my mother while my stepdad is away. I can't get it through anyone's head that she can still relate to having notes to remind her. She hasn't fed the dog a zillion times a day because of the note on the jar saying I will feed him.

She's to the point where I have to tell her where her husband is and why he isn't here many times a day. But notes are helping.

I just wish the rest of my family would realize she still has some skills left. This week with her is starting to prove that if I'm calm and respectful, Mom is about as calm as she can be, given her condition.
Anonymous
Posted: Thursday, January 5, 2012 3:27 PM
Originally posted by: Mimi S.

Hi SBW,
We're so glad you found us. Thank you so much for all your experience and ideas.

Tell us a bit more about your dad and yourself. I gather you're not living with him and that he lives by himself with caregivers. Is that correct?
Anonymous
Posted: Thursday, January 5, 2012 3:27 PM
Originally posted by: Jezza

I think there's a certain saturation point where too many notes make things confusing, especially as reading skill decline. I've used them to my advantage too however, specifically regarding feeding the cat.

I have a little board hanging on the cupboard with cat food in it. It says "Mimi has eaten". There are two clothes pins on it, each holding a card. After breakfast I have grandma turn around the first card, so it then says "Mimi has eaten ... Morning". If she goes to feed the cat again it helps to deter her. After dinner we turn the other card and it then reads "Morning" and "Evening". She knows the cat is done for the day when both cards are turned.

I couldn't teach her to reset them in the morning. That part never made sense, so I just flip them first thing every day. It works well, and has side stepped a lot of confrontations surrounding the cat!
Anonymous
Posted: Thursday, January 5, 2012 3:27 PM
Originally posted by: tarabl

I use notes and labels too. The ALF mom is in printed out the laundry pick up directions on purple paper so I went out and bought a pack of purple copy paper and use that for all my signs so that when she sees purple she know the sign means something important.

We also labeled the remotes "living room" and "bedroom" because she would switch them and then the tv wouldn't work.

I even caught mom leaving notes for the ALF staff about having her clothes washed. They were on the corner of the table when I walked into her room with a note that said "wash when you can" Notes much be contagious!

Oh and I forgot one important thing that helped mom when she would want to know the answer to certain questions she had written down. I'd write the answer in different color pen than she used under her question so that when she kept referring to the paper and asking the queston she would read the answer and then be satisfied
Anonymous
Posted: Thursday, January 5, 2012 3:27 PM
Originally posted by: Penny G

quote:
Originally posted by maebee:
Anyone can tell when my MIL is visiting with us. I have labels everywhere! SIL says Mom can't do this, or that, but at my house she is very independent( as much as possible. I have labeled her eyebrow pencils to prevent her from using it for lipstick, and vice versa with the lipstick(oh, the sight of orange eyebrows!). I put "FOR EYEBROWS ONLY",or "LIPS ONLY" and it works. I label everything I can. Toothpaste, eyeglass holder, facial cream, toothbrush. I have signs on the outside of my cupboards-"CUPS", BOWLS","GLASSES", etc. She can actually get herself a cup of coffee if I have remembered to put the sign on. She can help set the dinner table. I have one of those "Brother-P-touch" labelers, and the largest letters are very big.I have even been able to put labels on the "off" and "on" for the remote control, and she is proud that she can do it herself. She only watches one channel unless I change it, but she doesn't mind. I have been having trouble with her dressing. I will help her choose an outfit, leave the room so she can change, then a few minutes later she is asking me what she is to wear, and she is digging through the drawers. This time I am going to paperclip a note to her clothes and see if it works.
Maebee


As I am heading into the abyss known as my Alz mother's household the thought of preventing orange eyebrows just struck me funny. lol What you are suggesting is the very first thing I plan on doing - labels, labels, labels and pictures - everywhere...thanks for the suggestions and the humor.
Anonymous
Posted: Thursday, January 5, 2012 3:27 PM
Originally posted by: Mind-Start

I have used labels often, when working with persons with memory loss as an occupational therapist. I would suggest, though, to sse them only for what seems needed. If the person knows where their socks and underwear are, they probably do not need a label on the drawer indicating that. Too many labels could be distracting. Also, keep what you write on the label simple and brief and use the "word" that the persons uses, not your name for it. For example, if you want to label a cupboard with cups in it, would they call it "glasses" or "cups". Simplifying the environment and keeping things in sight is also helpful. At this stage, the person is using their visual senses as a cue as to what to do. So if their bathroom countertop only has a toothbrush and toothpaste in one container; hairbrush in another; and a few makeup items in another, it will help the person know what they should do.
Anonymous
Posted: Thursday, January 5, 2012 3:27 PM
Originally posted by: SBW

Labels help my Dad stay independent AND help the caregivers too. When he puts things in the wrong place I remind my self it doesn't matter where he puts the bowls (or whatever)-- its more important that he is still interacting and engaged in activities of daily living.

Deep breathing helps. I am learning to adjust my expectations and what's important - its helping me cope and be more patient.
Anonymous
Posted: Thursday, January 5, 2012 3:27 PM
Originally posted by: keliga

Oh, this is such a great idea!!!!
Anonymous
Posted: Thursday, January 5, 2012 3:27 PM
Originally posted by: jujee47

Notes and messages on everything, how clever. I will have to remember that for the future. Long family history of alz.
Anonymous
Posted: Thursday, January 5, 2012 3:27 PM
Originally posted by: LoriK

My problem with the notes and labels has been that mom takes them down. I got frustrated and put "do not remove" on them, but it didn't work either. She removed them. When I put up "do not pack these clothes," signs up, she packed the clothes and the signs. I know she can read. I think she's just hard headed.

Any suggestions?
Anonymous
Posted: Thursday, January 5, 2012 3:27 PM
Originally posted by: grammasgirl

Relpying on the little notes in a differant color pen will be a lifesaver. Thanks for the idea.
Anonymous
Posted: Thursday, January 5, 2012 3:27 PM
Originally posted by: eileenv

ttt
This is so true. My dad can still read so we put signs up everywhere.
--No turn on the stove.
--No throw paper towels into toilet.
--No cut-off tops (the plastic on tissue boxes)
We even labeled each dresser drawer for socks, underwear, etc.

He reads very slowly, but still understands thankfully. I think the signage, though unsightly, helps him to be independant of us. And that must give him some sense of dignity and purpose.

Peace
Eileen
 
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