1. Expert Q&A: Living well as a carer - Thurs 29 August, 3-4pm

    As a carer for a person living with dementia, the needs of the person you care for will often come before your own. You may experience a range of difficult emotions and you may not have the time to do all the things you need to do. Caring can have a big impact on both your mental and physical health, as well as your overall wellbeing.

    Angelo, our Knowledge Officer (Wellbeing) is our expert on this topic. He will be here to answer your questions on Thursday 29 August between 3-4pm.

    You can either post questions >here< or email them to us at talkingpoint@alzheimers.org.uk and we'll answer as many as we can on the day.

  1. Celandine

    Celandine Registered User

    Jul 21, 2017
    7
    Midlands
    Although I am newly registered I have been reading posts for some time.
    I need your help as I am upset and at a loss.
    My mother has lived with me for over 6 years. She has been diagnosed with Alzheimers for over 4 years. She takes Galantamine (for dementia) and Prozac (anti depressant) along with other drugs for heart failure.
    Mum has recently ( 4 weeks ago) gone to live in a care home. There have been 3 serious falls over the past 5 months and a steep downward curve in her dementia which necessitated this. She is still very articulate, forceful and very very angry that she is living where she is. Mum wants to live with her Mum, Dad, brothers and sisters (all long dead).

    My worry is that she has cleared her lovely room of ornaments, photos, knicknacks, brushes, combs, clock......everything personal and shoved them all into drawers because she states that other residents come into her room and steal them.
    I have read that wandering and 'borrowing' things like this is quite common.
    It is distressing to her as she enjoys sitting not in her room but the one lounges which is a good thing - but her room looks like a cell.
    What shall I do?
     
  2. nitram

    nitram Registered User

    Apr 6, 2011
    18,830
    Male
    North Manchester
    "...she enjoys sitting not in her room but the one lounges which is a good thing - but her room looks like a cell.
    What shall I do?"


    Nothing.
    It's her enjoyment that matters, not your interpretation.
     
  3. Clueless2

    Clueless2 Registered User

    May 14, 2015
    34
    As nitram says, nothing.

    My mum did the same, however over time she has been content for ornaments (hers or others that she has "borrowed" from other residents) to reappear on display, but sadly (to us) not the photos of her family.

    A carer suggested that keeping the framed photos hidden away was akin to her keeping them /us safe, so we are still important to her; out of sight doesn't therefore mean out of mind.

    We have compensated by hanging large pictures (not photos) on her walls, paintings from home, familiar and loved.
     
  4. nitram

    nitram Registered User

    Apr 6, 2011
    18,830
    Male
    North Manchester
    "... but sadly (to us) not the photos of her family. "

    Have you tried images of her family, with or without her, taken decades ago?

    Nothing fancy, just prints on A4, don't force them on her, just stick them on the wall.
     
  5. Tin

    Tin Registered User

    May 18, 2014
    4,829
    UK
    It is sad for us, my mum lives with me and her bedroom is just not the way it was when she first moved in. She still has a few odds and ends in there, but all the things that meant something to her and me have all found new homes in drawers and a bag in the wardrobe, I have tried bringing a few things out, but with no success. At the moment my biggest problem in there is that she does not like her bed.
     
  6. Witzend

    Witzend Registered User

    Aug 29, 2007
    4,293
    SW London
    I dare say she's right, that things do go missing. My mother's care home was a bit like Kleptomania Central at times. Is everything of value (sentimental,or otherwise) clearly labelled, inc. the actual photos, not just the frames? Because I've found at least one of my mother's framed photos not only 'borrowed', but dismantled.

    I don't know about anybody else, but we found that after a very short time the bits and pieces we'd taken to make her room look like home, meant nothing to her any more. In particular there were portraits of grandparents she'd adored - when I asked her who they were, she didn't even know, still less care. And this was when her dementia was still only middle stage.

    To be honest, I don't know what you can do, except go along with it. If hiding everything away is what she wants to do, it's likely to be impossible - and just cause unnecessary stress - to persuade her otherwise.
     
  7. Clueless2

    Clueless2 Registered User

    May 14, 2015
    34
    I haven't, but I have taken copies of photos throughout her life and made an album which we look at together every now and then.

    It is almost as though looking at the photos has the same effect upon her as my being there; a sudden jolting reminder of a previous life, sparking anxiety, where am I?, when can I go home? etc. However when the photos (and me) are out of sight, the staff assure me that she returns to her now familiar care home world and is for the most part seemingly content.

    I am just so very grateful that despite her inability to say a coherent sentence, she still always recognises me by name and as being someone she loves.
     
  8. arielsmelody

    arielsmelody Registered User

    Jul 16, 2015
    512
    If the room is looking bare, I wonder if you could add some larger pieces - a clock on the wall, or a nice cushion - things that aren't personal but make the room a bit more cheerful.
     
  9. befrazzled

    befrazzled Registered User

    Jan 4, 2014
    5
    camberley
    We had a similar problem when mum moved to her care home 2 years ago. The care home provided mum with a key so that she could lock her room when she left it.
     
  10. Rageddy Anne

    Rageddy Anne Registered User

    Feb 21, 2013
    5,990
    Cotswolds
    My husband was never interested in the familiar things we put in his room, because he believed he was in a hotel. Now he's in a different Care Home, and his familiar pictures etc mean nothing at all to him.
    Sometimes he indicates he'd rather be some where else, but the concept of home has gone. His Care Home is now his home...and the carers are his friends.

    He still knows I'm special, but doesn't know I'm visiting because I try to let him think I live there too, so when I leave I'm just nipping out or a bit, to post a letter or something like that. Some of the less observant carers make a big fuss when I come and go, and I discourage it, as he is more peaceful without that.
     

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.