In January 2012 my mom experienced a hallucination event caused by a combination of dementia and taking her medicine incorrectly. At this point in time I knew I had to put some extra care in place to be able to allow my mom to continue living in her home. Of course I did not fully understand what was going on and was overwhelmed with how best to provide care for my mom.
Fortunately I was referred to Senior Helpers and made arrangements to have someone come in during the week for 2 hours a day to make sure mom was taking her medicine daily and was getting some help with things around the house. Senior Helpers suggested that I contact Jan Norby, a geriatric nurse, to see if she might be able to help. Both Senior Helpers and Jan were a gift from God. Jan made arrangements for my mom to see a geriatric psychiatrist for evaluation right away. This was very helpful so she could begin medication to help stop the progression of the disease.
Jan began visiting my mom weekly to fill my mom’s weekly medicine containers, check her blood pressure, and she took my mom to all her doctor appointments. Jan worked with my mom’s doctors to make sure that mom was taking the right medicines for her and taking the right dosages. They were able to reduce the medications to once a day and also get my mom off of Coumadin which saved a trip to the lab every so often to check her levels.
Having Jan in our corner has meant peace of mind for me. While my mom still sometimes does not understand why Jan needs to come I know that if I had not made these arrangements, my mom’s health would not be as good as it is. Jan has continued to come and assess my mom weekly even though now my daughter is living with my mom and helping her around the house so she can continue to live at home.
It is comforting to have a professional care giver to give us suggestions, encouragement and resources for information as we walk through this dementia journey with my mom. Jan has become a part of my family and I treasure her as she cares deeply for my mom and for our family.