Getting in the car

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Bella33
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 480
   Posted 3/7/2012 11:54 AM (GMT -6)   
Does anyone know how to get someone in the car? My mom has PD with dementia and sometimes she just has brain freeze and does not know to step in with her left leg while facing front then sit down. Most of the time she will sit on the ledge which is the bottom of the car seat or she might face me and sit on the seat then I have to shift her sideways to face the front. My uncle gave me one of those swivel cushions that can acts like a turn table but because my mom slides in the car instead of stepping in she then is not on top of the gadget instead pushing it away from her. Any suggestions please?

Red_34
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2004
Total Posts : 23551
   Posted 3/7/2012 12:37 PM (GMT -6)   
Instead of a swivel cushion, you can try putting a large trash bag on the entire seat. This will allow her to swivel and slide no matter where she sits.
SHERRY
Moderator-Allergies/Asthma and Alzheimer's, Co-moderator-UC
Diagnosed Left sided UC in '92 - meds: 6mp, Colazal, Remicade and Bentyl*Unable to tolerate ALL mesalamines*, in '11 diagnosed with IBS, Diverticulosis, Fibromylagia..I also have Sacroiilitis, Scoliosis, Raynauds, OA, PA, Rosacea, Psoriasis, Dry Eye and allergies controlled by Zyrtec and Singular

Bella33
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 480
   Posted 3/7/2012 12:41 PM (GMT -6)   
The trick is I need to get her in the car first. Also trash bag = extreme heat in the summertime.

Red_34
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2004
Total Posts : 23551
   Posted 3/7/2012 9:28 PM (GMT -6)   
To get her into the car, perhaps use a trick of sorts...say that you have a candy or snack that is her favorite, but she has to follow you to get it. Lay the garbage bag on the seat first, do not leave it in there (because of the heat), get her into the car, swivel her around and when she is safely buckled give her the treat or snack. Maybe this will work?
SHERRY
Moderator-Allergies/Asthma and Alzheimer's, Co-moderator-UC
Diagnosed Left sided UC in '92 - meds: 6mp, Colazal, Remicade and Bentyl*Unable to tolerate ALL mesalamines*, in '11 diagnosed with IBS, Diverticulosis, Fibromylagia..I also have Sacroiilitis, Scoliosis, Raynauds, OA, PA, Rosacea, Psoriasis, Dry Eye and allergies controlled by Zyrtec and Singular

Red_34
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2004
Total Posts : 23551
   Posted 3/7/2012 9:29 PM (GMT -6)   
BTW, I used this trick on my gma...her favorite was pecan pie lol. I had a hard time getting her to the car at times as well and this seemed to work.
SHERRY
Moderator-Allergies/Asthma and Alzheimer's, Co-moderator-UC
Diagnosed Left sided UC in '92 - meds: 6mp, Colazal, Remicade and Bentyl*Unable to tolerate ALL mesalamines*, in '11 diagnosed with IBS, Diverticulosis, Fibromylagia..I also have Sacroiilitis, Scoliosis, Raynauds, OA, PA, Rosacea, Psoriasis, Dry Eye and allergies controlled by Zyrtec and Singular

Bella33
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 480
   Posted 3/7/2012 9:53 PM (GMT -6)   
Very cute but it's not that she doesn't want to get in but she doesn't know how.

Red_34
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2004
Total Posts : 23551
   Posted 3/8/2012 7:07 AM (GMT -6)   
My gma would get confused as well. She was pretty passive so I didn't have much issue. But I would turn her around, help her bend at the waist and help her sit in the seat. I'm not sure how big your mom is but my gma was a very petite woman (4'8" 85lbs) so I suppose that made it easier on me.
SHERRY
Moderator-Allergies/Asthma and Alzheimer's, Co-moderator-UC
Diagnosed Left sided UC in '92 - meds: 6mp, Colazal, Remicade and Bentyl*Unable to tolerate ALL mesalamines*, in '11 diagnosed with IBS, Diverticulosis, Fibromylagia..I also have Sacroiilitis, Scoliosis, Raynauds, OA, PA, Rosacea, Psoriasis, Dry Eye and allergies controlled by Zyrtec and Singular

Bella33
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 480
   Posted 3/8/2012 11:20 AM (GMT -6)   
My mom weighs 125lb and is about 5'3" She always wants to sit down anywhere so it's trying to make her stay up that's a challenge. Due to her PD she has trouble lifting her leg sometimes which is the problem getting in the car too.

baby dumpling
New Member


Date Joined May 2012
Total Posts : 5
   Posted 5/2/2012 9:11 AM (GMT -6)   
Perhaps this video will help: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=khTKRwoWqn4

It shows a safe method for helping someone get into a car, but suggests not to use the step-in-first method. I agree, that backing into the seat is best. And then you can help her with the leg lifting after she is seated. It will be easier that way. Make sure she can feel the car on the backs of her legs before she sits. This re-training can take a few times, so be patient.

My FIL has begun to forget how to do certain things, too. Getting into the car isn't an issue yet, but he has forgotten how to buckle the seatbelt, so we have to do that for him. I assist my MIL into the car in much the same way as described in the video, and it works very well, although she doesn't need quite as much help as yet. Although she did have to re-learn how to get into the car after her stroke because she used to use the step-in-first method and after her stroke and amputation that didn't work so well anymore.

Oddly enough my father taught me when I was very young that the step-in-first method was 'unlady-like' and that ladies should use the sit and turn method for modesty's sake. Funny, huh? I guess you could say my dad was kind of old-fashioned, but perhaps I'm better prepared for future problems should they occur in my own mobility.

Post Edited (baby dumpling) : 5/2/2012 11:01:41 AM (GMT-6)


Bella33
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 480
   Posted 5/2/2012 2:46 PM (GMT -6)   
step in is easier on my back. When she sits and have me twist her I usually will hurt my back and risk breaking or spraining something of hers. My mom has trouble with measurement of distance. She tries to step in too far from the car and won't make it so I have to push her in within a split second or else she will fall to the ground.

SmurfyShadow
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 2386
   Posted 5/3/2012 12:15 AM (GMT -6)   
get a wheelchair van..... you can either put her in a wheel chair or have her walk up the ramp. I usually walked behind gma with my hands on her hips (in case she fell) then, I'd switch when we used the van.. I'd have the neighbor stand behind her while I got in, and took hold of her hands and said "its ok gma i'm here and i wont let anything happen. just follow me." I would walk backwards to to the seat turn around help her sit down and buckle her up.
"The Walking Medical Mystery"

Too many Allergies / Too many RXs & DXs

A Rare Gem for Doctors and Guinee Pig
~Medical Caregiver and Doctors Worse Nightmare~

Bella33
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 480
   Posted 5/3/2012 7:21 AM (GMT -6)   
There is just me and my mom. I take her to a daycare before work and then I have a caregiver pick her up and stay with her until I get home from work. She can walk fine if that's all she does. She won't sit in a chair or sofa all the way back which then she leans forward little by little and then she falls and can't get up on her own. I tried the cushion before and it's useless for her because she doesn't sit in a car she slides in and the cushion gets shoved to the ground. She just freezes up sometimes and just won't get inside the car. Once she is inside she plays with all the buttons and even mess with the shift so I have to watch her and the road. She's not wheel chair material yet, thank god so no we don't have one. I wish I have a good neighbor to help out but that would be on a daily basis and no one is that helpful. haha

Having PD restricts her movements and the dementia stops her from using common sense. The 2 combo is a deadly force. Mind and body disrupted.

SmurfyShadow
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 2386
   Posted 5/5/2012 1:19 AM (GMT -6)   
Well there is other services. Not sure where you are, but here in Oregon we can even get transportation for them. The driver takes on the well being responsibility. Also, perhaps maybe calling your worker and see if they can hire you an extra person to aid getting her in and out of the car. Maybe your current caregiver wouldnt even mind a little extra money.

A wheel chair van also has seats in the back if you get the right kind. You don't have to put her in a wheel chair, she can sit in the seat. Also maybe getting one now will save you the trouble for when you actually need to have her in a wheel chair, as it is already there.
"The Walking Medical Mystery"

Too many Allergies / Too many RXs & DXs

A Rare Gem for Doctors and Guinee Pig
~Medical Caregiver and Doctors Worse Nightmare~

Bella33
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 480
   Posted 5/5/2012 2:40 PM (GMT -6)   
My mom has dementia and cannot be brought home from a driver at the center. She wouldn't know how to get inside the house and take her medication and go to bed. I would also be worried that the driver would take advantage of my mom since she wouldn't complain or even remember it afterwards. This is why I hired some one to watch her and pick her up first.

Wheel chair van is not something I could drive nor is it necessary for my mom right now. I make her sound like she's 100 years old but she's only 74 and looks 60. The problem is she doesn't want to get inside. It's all about her willingness to cooperate. It would be nice to have family members always in the house to come out and help but I don't have anyone. You can't hire someone to just be there for that 30 second push every morning. It would be ideal though. Thanks for all your suggestions.
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