Follow-Up on Dad’s Dizzy Spells

Last week I wrote about how I had asked to have someone evaluate dad’s dizzy spells and confusion in a post called “Watching Over Dad”.  As a result of my phone call to dad’s doctor, a home health nurse was sent to his Assisted Living Facility to evaluate his symptoms.

The next morning I got a call from the home health care nurse.  She was at dad’s Assisted Living Facility and just finished an evaluation of dad.  She said he was friendly and he was a flirt!  She did the evaluation and took his blood pressure sitting.  Then she asked him to stand and took it again.  It was 136/72 sitting and 120/60 standing.  So it did go down, but not a lot.

Still such a drop could make him dizzy.  She said he moved too fast.  When she asked him to stand, he stood up like a shot!  She told him he should move more slowly.  And she told him to drink more liquids.  Drinking more is important because he hardly drinks fluids at all.  Actually, he never did, even when he was in the hospital or the nursing home two years ago.

The home health nurse said someone would come to see dad three times a week for 3 weeks.  She will check to see how he is doing and to encourage him to move more slowly and to drink more fluids.  She will also send me some forms to sign as his Power of Attorney, agreeing for home care and consent (or not) to electronically send PHI to his doctor.

When I visited dad at his ALF, I asked how they plan to get dad to drink more fluids as I know he doesn’t like to do so.  The facility nurse said that since he is in the lounge most of the time they are able to offer him water and juice periodically.

On Sunday when I was there I asked dad about drinking fluids.  He said he wasn’t thirsty.  I asked the aide from the wellness center to bring him something to drink.  She asked him if he wanted juice or water and he said water.  She brought it, but I still had to keep nagging him to drink it.

I am glad they followed up on dad’s symptoms and are trying to address his problems.  However, I am not really sure what type of lasting effect this will have.  Dad is still reluctant to drink extra fluids and with his Alzheimer’s he forgets why he should.  I guess all I can do is hope for the best as now his aides know that he has to be watched for dizziness.

I think I will get a report at the end of the three weeks that the home health nurse will be visiting dad.  I don’t know if this will lead to any changes in medication, etc. as I don’t think the problem is caused by the medication he is now taking.  It seems that in the end, all I can do is keep an eye on dad and his medical issues and hope for the best.


About letstalkaboutfamily

I am a retired and was the primary caregiver for both my parents before they passed. I have children and grandchildren. This blog is an attempt to connect with other caregivers and share ideas and experiences. I hope you will let me know what worked for you if you had an experience similar to mine. The main issues I am going to talk about are elder care, death and dying, assisted living, family relationships and hoarders and hoarding. Other topics will come up as I address the issues and my relationship with other family members.
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9 Responses to Follow-Up on Dad’s Dizzy Spells

  1. Terry says:

    I think that the staff knowing that you are on top of things will help them to offer him more fluids

  2. boomer98053 says:

    That generation of senior citizens aren’t very attuned to hydrating; it’s a dilemma everywhere. Additionally, you know that staff members can’t possibly be diligent enough to make sure that all of their residents are hydrating. Let us hope that your dad develops a yearning for water. That would be a good thing. 😉

    • Yes, it would be a good thing — and a surprising thing too. Even mom never understood why I always walked around with a glass or bottle of water. It wasn’t the “new thing” with modern adults going to the gym and hydrating all the time either. It was because of my allergies and the antihistamines that made me constantly thirsty! And here I am, still drinking…

  3. JodiMelsness says:

    Also, think smoothies, Ensure, ice cream, jello, pudding. Anything that melts at room temp, nurses consider fluids. Or juicy fruits like watermelon, pears, peaches. We can get a lot of fluids in if you think outside the box. Good luck!! I know it’s hard, Mom will only drink coffee and I have to push the other fluids.

    • Thanks for the ideas. He refuses most of those especially ensure and jello, but he loves ice cream!
      His last ALF let him have ice cream after every meal, but they serve it far less frequently where he is now. I might bring some in for him and ask them to give it to him after his meals or when he is picky about eating any meals. Sometimes he doesn’t eat much, but I have found he is always willing to eat ice cream even when he turns down his nose at his meal.

  4. jmgoyder says:

    Glad you have found a couple of answers.

  5. Pingback: Follow Up on Home Health Nurse | Let's Talk About Family

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