Fixated on days and dates

Discussion in 'I care for a person with dementia' started by Linbrusco, Jul 3, 2015.

  1. Linbrusco

    Linbrusco Registered User

    Mar 4, 2013
    1,585
    Female
    Auckland...... New Zealand
    Mum has a weekly whiteboard calendar on her fridge that I write that weeks activities/appts.
    There is also clock beside her bed with the time, day, month and day of the week.

    For a few weeks now I have stopped writing the date on Mums whiteboard, as it seemed to confuse her more. If she maybe had a hair appointment, this date would be fixed in her mind, although most days she doesn't remember what day or date it is.
    Mum would constantly ask about the days and dates on the calendar, so thought it would be less confusing by just having days of the week only.

    Dad says Mum wakes from 3am onwards to the loo, and she goes through to the kitchen turning the lights on , checking her whiteboard before she goes back to bed.

    So today Mum says that her phone says July 3rd... why doesn't it say the 4th. When will it be the 4th? She said it really confused her.
    Told her once she is in bed at night and the clock strikes midnight her phone will change to the next day.
    She seemed happy with this explanation... so far :)

    What more can I do?
    I have seen suggested here a digital picture frame with some kind of clock with the day, date, month, on a memory card??
    How does that work. Can someone find the thread?

    Has anyone found it successful. If I can do this , thought I could put it on the top of her fridge above her whiteboard?
     
  2. patsy56

    patsy56 Registered User

    Jan 14, 2015
    839
    Fife Scotland
    I have found that this week the times I have spoke to mum she is confused with dates. My sister says she has been really bad all week.
    I thought she was maybe looking at last weeks diary page so getting confused as she said that the 27th hadn't been yet but it had.

    She did say that there was so many dates in her diary she didn't know which day it was anymore. She keeps the news paper and TV programme guide handy and does look at the dates, but.......she can have three days papers there sh just won't throw out.

    Was thinking it was just the weather.
     
  3. Beate

    Beate Registered User

    May 21, 2014
    11,740
    Female
    London
    We have a day clock that just says the day and whether it's morning, afternoon, evening or night. So at the moment it says "Now it's Friday Morning". I don't know whether it helps OH but it seems to help me! He never wants to know the date though I do also have a wooden board on which you can adjust the date every day. He often checks the ordinary clock though and mumbles the time to himself.
     
  4. dpg144

    dpg144 Registered User

    Dec 5, 2014
    4
    Bradford
    My mother went through this stage about 3 years ago. She would look at her calendar and see an appointment marked on it for a date in the future, and that then became 'today's' date in her mind. It was hard to explain to her that the appointment wasn't for 'today', but in a week or so.

    From what I recall, the only way we found to prevent this type of confusion was for us to make a note of her appointments in our own diaries and leave her calendar blank, and then slowly remove calendars, and such, and only put them back for a day or so when she realised that they were missing. After a few months she didn't seem to miss them at all, and we now just take her to all of her appointments on the due date.
     
  5. beverrino

    beverrino Registered User

    Jan 12, 2015
    1,111
    I got my mum a mains clock which clearly shows the day/ date and time (made specially for people with dementia). She uses it constantly. Before then she used to use the daily paper, that's why I decided on the clock. It is excellent (mind they are not that cheap) but for my mum it has been well worth it. She still asks me what day it is, at the same time as she looks at the clock (in a prominent place) and the thing is - I always look to check as well! Quite comical sometimes.

    She still gets mixed up with her days but uses her diary and the clock to check. Her diary is invaluable to her - and I have found she writes a lot more in it now - so this helps me too - like what she had for lunch (saves me rummaging through the bins for evidence)
     
  6. Onlyme

    Onlyme Registered User

    Apr 5, 2010
    4,995
    UK
    I got Mum a diary and a clock but she told me both were wrong and change the hands to the time she thought it should be or just ignore the clock as it was 'rubbish'. It didn't matter if the sun was out she would decide it was 1 o'clock in the morning, nothing would shake her from the time she decided it was.

    Don't spend money on clocks as they will all be wrong if they don't agree with the time she thinks it is.
     
  7. beverrino

    beverrino Registered User

    Jan 12, 2015
    1,111
    I think the thing here is everyone is different and a person can only use their own judgment with their own relative to try and see if this will work.

    without my mum writing in a diary she would be completely lost - she knows this herself as she is quite aware, and uses her diary as a reminder of what she has done - it is constantly in her hand - in fact starting to fall to bits (being month 7)
     
  8. Spamar

    Spamar Registered User

    Oct 5, 2013
    6,987
    Suffolk
    With OH it was all a total waste of time (! No pun intended). The only thing he could use was the big red analogue kitchen clock, and even then, I'm not sure he understood it all the time. He'd usually just ask me.

    Once he asked me the temperature and I said it's on the clock ( digital one with loads of extras in the conservatory). I told him where - the two figures in the bottom right corner - and he still couldn't do it.

    I also had control of appts etc for many years and, although they were all written on calendar, I don't think he ever read it.
    Similarly, white boards wouldn't work - he couldn't / didn't read them. Shopping lists, even pre diagnosis, were no good either, not that'd he was capable go going shopping by himself for very long after diagnosis.
     
  9. patsy56

    patsy56 Registered User

    Jan 14, 2015
    839
    Fife Scotland
    same as my mum
     
  10. Grey Lad

    Grey Lad Registered User

    Sep 12, 2014
    5,736
    North East Lincs
    I have abandoned any attempt to get my wife to understand day, date or season. It really doesn't matter and she was getting so concerned about when we moved from 1999 to 2000. When we thought she was just recovering from stroke it may have been relevant but with dementia it may be pointless and just cause further stress.
     
  11. Linbrusco

    Linbrusco Registered User

    Mar 4, 2013
    1,585
    Female
    Auckland...... New Zealand
    Thanks for the replies.
    To be honest I even think the whole whiteboard stresses Mum out, but she constantly asks whats happening on what days, and previous attempts at her keeping a diary or notebook failed.
    The whitboard previously had a months worth written up, but I swapped it to a weekly one, but you get to the end of the week, before I have a chance to write up whats happening the following week, and Mum thinks she has no groups or anything to go to, as the weeks calendar has finished!

    Wish I could find a solution :)
     

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