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  1.  
    We are all familiar with this in one way or another; familiar read.
    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/05/19/nyregion/finding-elderly-new-yorkers-who-become-lost-outside.html?_r=1
    • CommentAuthorAdmin
    • CommentTimeMay 19th 2012
     
    In an effort to bring some humor into our lives, my family and I always say, since Sid can barely get up from a chair, and can barely manage to put one foot in front of the other - "Well, at least you don't have to worry about wandering."

    But now that he has a full size, easily gliding wheelchair, and he knows how to transfer from chair to walker to wheelchair, and how to move the big wheels with his arms to get going, I'm wondering if I'm going to have to worry about him taking off in it.

    Although he now can't even remember to use the control on his lift chair to "lift" himself out of it. So I'm doubtful he'll have the initiative or memory to get up, get in the wheelchair and wander. I sure hope not.

    joang
    • CommentAuthormothert
    • CommentTimeMay 20th 2012
     
    My dh goes out our door alone, without telling me that he is taking a walk, probably 2/day, sometimes in the evening, too. I know when he leaves because we have an alarm that notifies when a door is opened, and I know what his routine is and so far he's always come back. I really can't stop him from going out so I choose not to stress over it; although I like that GPS idea (where does one get one and how does it work? I know that one day he might go out and not come back and, then I will have to figure out how to keep him in; but, for now I'll just have to let it go.
    • CommentAuthorpaulc
    • CommentTimeMay 21st 2012
     
    I recommend doing a search on the Internet with "gps dementia" This will bring up lots of products and articles on the subject.

    Solutions include special shoes, watches, and the iPhone. Does he always have a cell phone on him (and can you count on him having it in the future)? Would he be willing to have something extra with him or do you have to hide the GPS in something he always has with him?
    • CommentAuthormothert
    • CommentTimeMay 21st 2012
     
    He never got used to the cell phone, doesn't know how to use it, so that's just a waste of money. He wouldn't necessarily object to something extra, he just wouldn't remember to have it on him and he never tells me when he's going out, just goes. So, I will have to put it on something that he always has with him, like his watch. I like that idea. I will go check it out with Mr. Google. Thank you.
    •  
      CommentAuthorJudithKB*
    • CommentTimeMay 21st 2012
     
    I think I maybe in the same situation. My dh has siezures sometimes at night. Last night he was really jerking
    alot. I rolled over by him to try and give him comfort to calm him down. I fell back to sleep and woke up at 4:30 this morning and he wasn't in the bed. I looked all over the house and into the spare bedroom I didn't see him any place. I did see his shoes under the coffee table and I know he took them off in the bedroom before he went to bed last night. I went back and looked again in the spare bedroom and there he was hiding under a drk.brown throw with only one hand sticking out. Wow...what a panic mode I was in. This is the first time he has done something like this. Today he doesn't remember a thing about leaving our bed.

    I don't know if I should wait or get some kind of alarm now for when he gets out of bed. Seems like something new every day or so.
    • CommentAuthorElaineH
    • CommentTimeMay 21st 2012
     
    There is a program run by our police department called Project Lifesaver. I don't believe it is country wide but I know that quite a few police departments across the nation subscribe to it. In our county it is free due to contributions. It is an electonic device that looks similar to a watch. When the person gets lost or goes missing the police respond & track the signal of the electronic device. My DH has one but he ripped it off of his wrist so I put it on his shoe (I tied it into his shoelace). The website is www.projectlifesaver.org.
    • CommentAuthorDazed
    • CommentTimeMay 21st 2012 edited
     
    JudithKB, that may be the only time he will do that. About 6 or 8 months, I also woke up and DH wasn't in bed. I looked everywhere and finally found him in the spare bedroom sleeping with the comforter pulled over him. He said he thought that was our bed. That hasn't happened again but I did order an alarm and put it by the back door. I keep the pager (which is loud) on my night table just in case. Something funny, though, he picked up the alarm thing and asked what it was. I told him what it was for. He said "So if I go outside, I need to turn this thing off first?" Ha, I don't worry about that. He could never figure out how to turn it off.
    • CommentAuthorLFL
    • CommentTimeMay 22nd 2012
     
    Well, my DH has managed to get out of the house twice at night and I have all doors alarmed (except the one to the dog run) and once thru the sliding glass door which was not alarmed. Trust me, it can happen to anyone at any time so it is important that you are prepared. My doors have been alarmed since Dec 2008, now have a locking mechanism on the sllider. I've also enrolled him in Project LifeSaver with the local sheriff's dept which is currently free due to subsiidies by state govt. And yes, he ripped the bracelet off his ankle twice, even tho I have it on his right ankle and he has to use his nondominate had (left) to tear it off. Sheriff told me she's never had a participant that could break the band-mostly they just cut it off.
    There are many products on the market but I found them to be expensive with an initial purchase price and then a monthly monitoring fee and the range is not very wide for tracking purposes (enerally you need to use your PC or smart phone to track).

    If LO is missing you call 911 and tell them that LO is a participant with Project Lifesaver. 911 has a picture of your LO and calls the sheriff's office. They send out someone with a gps tracker that has about a 2-3 mile range. If they can't locate them, at least here, they send out a helicopter with infrared equip to find them. They've found everyone so far.
    • CommentAuthorDazed
    • CommentTimeMay 22nd 2012
     
    LFL, do they have to wear a bracelet or something when you have project lifesaver? I haven't checked on anything here. I don't think he could get out during the night but your post made me think it may be possible. Did your door alarms not work or were not loud enough to wake you up? Maybe I'm putting too much confidence in mine.
    •  
      CommentAuthorCharlotte
    • CommentTimeMay 22nd 2012
     
    My FIL could get out of any security tried on the doors, even the double keyed. Don't' ask me how - but he did. Maybe he climbed out the window - was never told, only that he escaped and was a mile down the road by the time my BIL caught up to him.
  2.  
    Judith KB, my DH has his seizures in the morning...always. Since he has been on Neurontin, he hasn't had any. It just seems like he wakes up and his brain doesn't. Even with the Neurontin he is still a little jerky and prone to falls if I don't keep him in bed for a while. AND if I want him to stay there, I have to stay with him. Otherwise, he will fall.
    Lloyd used to be a runner. He would slip out that door and be gone and then we would have to make calls and send out the search parties. We always found him, thank God! Then my SIL put a double key deadbolt on the front door. Everyone needs a key to get in and out. No more running. Such a relief. And any relief is such a blessing in this life!!!
    • CommentAuthorLFL
    • CommentTimeMay 24th 2012
     
    Dazed, although everydoor has a deabolt lock you need a key to get in/out AND an alarm, DH was able to find the chinks in the armour. I don't have the sliders alarmed because I always thought I would hear him opening them since they are very noisy when opening them. Well, I didn't hear him leaving (neither did the aide) so the next day i got a 1"x2" piece of wood to put in the runner so now he doesn't know how to get out of the slider. The door to the dog run is usually alarmed but not locked; I got complacent-he's never tried going out that door so we shut the alarm off. So guess what? He went out the door to the dog run, climbed over the fence.

    Project lifesaver has a plastic bracelet with a gps device on it. I put it on his right ankle because if he had i on his arm he would tear it off (or cut it). The sheriff comes out once a month to change the battery to make sure it gives a signal.

    Lessons learned the hard way. Do NOT underestimate their ability to escape-even though they supposedly no longer have problem solving ability.
    • CommentAuthorZibby*
    • CommentTimeMay 24th 2012
     
    At our house: keyed, deadbolts on outside doors. Spring adjustable curtain rod in slider to deck. (He couldn't figure that one out.) Also padlock on specially made gate to deck (deck is about 12 ft above ground). Sprint has a family locator feature for it's cell phones ($15 per month). IF you can count on spouse having it w/him/her, this may work. For interior, lever handle doors, I bought a "locking device" that attached to the door around the handle. Don't remember what it was called, but got it at Riley Children's Hospital shop in Indianapolis. When set, the handle wouldn't move.