Question: Can a schedule or routine in a nursing home hinder the recovery of a patient? My mom is in her fourth week in a nursing home after having an out patient surgery procedure. She is woken up at 5:30 in the morning but breakfast is not until 8:00. She then has physical therapy for about two hours. Mom is the type of person that must eat breakfast as soon as possible after she wakes up, or she does not feel well. The nursing home staff want to keep her another two weeks because they say she is not doing well.
Dr. Amy: Waiting two and a half hours for breakfast for many people would be unpleasant. I know many people who, like your mom, prefer to have breakfast shortly after they get up. If they have to wait, it can put them off their day. Surely there is a way to get you mom a bite to eat first thing in the morning. I encourage you to talk to the nursing home staff about the situation and see if they can bring her a snack to tide her over until breakfast. If at first you do not meet with success, I encourage go through the chain of command until you find someone who can help your mom. Proper nutrition plays an important role in the maintenance of good health. This is especially true for people recovering from surgery. And in your mom’s case, it seems the long wait for breakfast is making her feel unwell.
Is your mom able to feed herself? Since your mom is only there for two more weeks, I wonder—if the nursing home staff is not able to help your mom—if you might bring her something non-perishable like muffins. She could keep them in a Tupperware container and eat one every morning before breakfast. If she cannot feed herself, you might consider hiring a caregiver to come in and take care of your mom from wake up time to breakfast—and bring her something to eat.
I wonder if readers have any experience with this kind of situation to share? I'd be interested to hear about any similar situations.
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