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I need help dealing with husband who is getting very agitated
Posted: Tuesday, November 19, 2019 8:22 PM
Joined: 11/19/2019
Posts: 18

Hi All,

I had to place my young husband in a community at the age of 53 due to his alzheimers - dementia.  These symptoms were brought upon from the extensive chemotherapy he had several years ago to "cure" two types of cancer.  He has only been in the community for 3 months, but he is now getting aggressive.  He tries to lash out a people and objects (not all the time, maybe once or twice a week).  He is primarily wheel chair bound, but is a strong young man.  The community he has been placed in wants him out, and I am having a hard time finding another place for him, partially due to the fact that he is medicaid pending, and his age!  If anyone can help me, I would appreciate it, as I am coming to wits end trying to do whatever I can for him. Thanks!

Posted: Tuesday, November 19, 2019 8:34 PM
Joined: 7/17/2017
Posts: 403

Welcome, and I'm so sorry that it's come to this with your husband.  Can you speak directly with his MD, PA, or NP?  Medication can help a lot of times, even when caregivers try to change their approach and that doesn't work.  Let the facility know you are willing to manage his symptoms by allowing them to adjust/change/start medication.  My Mom was so agitated one time that she punched a pregnant caregiver in the stomach; I'll never forget that day I got a call from the facility in the middle of my work day as a nurse!! What an explosion! 

 Please give us more information about your Dad's medication.  Once you get kicked out of one facility, they share information, so it can be really difficult to get into a new place, especially since you're dealing with Medicaid and can only use facilities that accept Medicaid (fewer choices, unfortunately).  When I got that call, I immediately told them I would authorize medication and work with them every step of the way, and they did not kick her out.  My heart goes out to you and please keep us updated.  

Posted: Wednesday, November 20, 2019 4:18 AM
Joined: 3/6/2017
Posts: 2206


Hi and welcome. 

I am sorry you have a need for support, but happy you found us.

This is a difficult situation all around. Many community discriminate against younger men even without a history off agitated behaviors. FWIW, my 83 year old dad wasn't accepted into mom's preferred community on the basic of his specific diagnosis which they claimed was associated with "behaviors". 

Has anyone suggested getting a geriatric psychiatrist in to visit and determine if medication could help? Should he be sent to a geriatric psych hospital for medication management and either return to his current community or to one the MSW working in discharge planning helps you find?


MN Chickadee
Posted: Wednesday, November 20, 2019 10:25 AM
Joined: 9/7/2014
Posts: 1028

It's possible that he needs a stay at an in patient geriatric psych unit to get the aggression stabilized. From there you would state you cannot take him home and the social workers there would help find placement. A regular psychiatrist and psych unit are not the same as geriatric psych. The geriatric one will have staff trained in dementia and lots of experience in getting extreme dementia symptoms stable. 

If I were you I would utilize the Alzheimers Association. The hotline is free and can help walk you through options. Ask to speak to a care consultant who is a social worker trained in dementia related issues. 1-800-272-3900. They can get you in touch with the local chapter, which hopefully would probably know which facilities in your area are more likely to accept a younger person and/or challenging behaviors. 

Posted: Wednesday, November 20, 2019 11:54 AM
Joined: 8/8/2014
Posts: 884


I placed my 53 year old husband in the dementia unit of a nursing home this past April. He was diagnosed in 2016 with probable Early Onset Alzheimer's, and was a wandering risk and was becoming aggressive at home. I knew I needed to place him before he or one of us at home got hurt. The nursing home has been trying several different medications adjustments and additions to help his agitation and anxiety among other things. Make sure that he is seen by a geriatric psychiatric doctor or nurse practitioner. If they don't have one on staff, you may want to make an appointment for an outside evaluation.

Posted: Sunday, November 24, 2019 9:17 PM
Joined: 11/19/2019
Posts: 18

Many thanks to all of your suggestions and support.  He now has been sleeping a lot. I often have to get to the facility and wake him up.  Good news is that he still has a pretty good appetite.  I'm iffy about taking him to my sisters for Thanksgiving, as I think he would make others feel uncomfortable, due to his level of need to be fed, and his lack of being able to communicate.  However, I also feel like this may be my last chance to bring him to a family event... Not due to health as much, but more due to his brain function.  Very confused. 

 I am so glad I found this site, as I many times need someone to talk to, and so many of you have come through for me.  Thank You!  I'm relatively new to this with my DH, but have dealt with it for my mother in law and grandparents, but more from afar. 


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