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CMS91

Registered User
Jul 22, 2019
20
Hello

My nan who I care for and is my world has mixed dementia (Alzheimer’s and Vascular). She had a fall a few days ago, so has been in hospital nearly a week recovering.

Before the fall mentally, she was very forgetful because of the stage of dementia she is in but you could easily hold a perfect conversation with her. You wouldn’t even know some days she had dementia. Physically she was still very mobile, going for walks everyday and quite independent. I helped her with medication, house cleaning, shopping.

However, since the fall and being in hospital she is totally immobile by herself 😭 she is having physio in hospital to build her strength back up but I’m so worried she won’t ever be able to walk by herself again.
Also I think her dementia has taken a huge progression step. She knows who I am and is so relieved everyday when she seems me but when I’ve been talking to her, shes not making a lot of sense in what she is saying. I’m so terrified this is permanent and she won’t come back from it 😭 I feel like I’ve lost a huge bit of my nan 😭😭😭

Any advice please? Has anyone else experienced this? Did they become more mobile and mentally stable when they were home?
 

Illy

Registered User
May 11, 2013
35
Manchester
Could you speak to someone at the hospital? Maybe it could be the result of any medication she is being given. Hopefully they can help put your mind at ease. xx
 

CMS91

Registered User
Jul 22, 2019
20
I have tried everyday but they can’t seem to give me any straight answers. It’s so frustrating. They just give me an update on her blood pressure readings because they keep dropping when she is stood up, when they are putting in fluids etc because they take her off them and they put her back on a day later.

I think I will ask to speak to the doctor rather than the nurse on Monday. When I was talking to her today it’s like she wasn’t registering what I was saying at all. Her face was totally blank 😭
 

Louise7

Registered User
Mar 25, 2016
2,482
@CMS91 Hospitals are not good environments for people with dementia but hopefully your nan won't be in there for too long. As @Illy has mentioned, it may be that she is being given medication that is causing some of the changes. Ask to speak to your nan's consultant - when mum was first in hospital I thought that I was speaking to nurses but they were care assistants and I also got blank stares when asking about treatment, diagnosis etc. If you are able to visit your nan in the hospital I found that going in early to catch the consultants when they did their rounds was best. Hopefully you'll be able to get more information on Monday.
 

Duggies-girl

Registered User
Sep 6, 2017
2,103
Hi @CMS91 My dad was admitted to hospital last year unable to stand and diagnosed with pneumonia. He was in there for 3 weeks and the deterioration was terrible. The hospital staff were useless. Dad had 3 falls trying to get to the toilet when he couldn't walk. They just put him in incontinence pants and left him in bed when he just needed some help. There was a lot of other things to complain about but I am not going to go on about them now. The physio ward was not equipped to deal with dementia and they didn't seem to do anything as far as I could see.

Anyway cut a long horror story short, dad came home after 3 weeks, 3 falls, a heart attack, a stroke and losing 2 stone in weight. He immediately returned to his previous lovely self (he was a bit of a monster in hospital and he had every right to be) although his memory was much worse and he didn't recognise most of his home anymore but he was happy enough. His mobility improved rapidly with the aid of his frame and he was soon taking himself to the bathroom again so yes he did very well. Dad was 88 when this happened and had already been diagnosed with cancer so he did incredibly well.

As for making sense, dad was away with the fairies the whole time he was in there. He had all sorts of delusions and turned quite evil towards me on occasions. Once he was home he was normal again and he forgot about his hospital stay immediately. It was like it had never happened.

Your nan may regain her mobility and she may get back to her old self but likely with less capabilities than before. It's a guessing game really. I did have to move in with dad when he came home and he never recovered to a degree that he could live independently again but he was still the dad that I knew. and as quick witted as before. Dad could not live alone anymore so I became his 24/7 carer which is not something I would recommend.

I hope you get to talk to someone soon.
 

Galanthus

Registered User
Jan 17, 2020
18
Hi CMS91, everyone is different of course, but like your nan, my mum functions reasonably well. But my own experience is that when my mum has a decline in her physical health, or a brief hospital visit, her mental health/AD plummets. Then she starts doing peculiar things like putting soup on little plates, things in odd places, and she gets very confused verbally. She does gradually get back to her normal, but I find generally she goes up and down a bit anyway, and obviously dementia is a one way street. It was recently recommended to me to play music from the 50s - it’s been a revelation, like watering a parched plant and she really comes to life. Best of luck with the next little while 🙏🏻
 

CMS91

Registered User
Jul 22, 2019
20
Hi @CMS91 My dad was admitted to hospital last year unable to stand and diagnosed with pneumonia. He was in there for 3 weeks and the deterioration was terrible. The hospital staff were useless. Dad had 3 falls trying to get to the toilet when he couldn't walk. They just put him in incontinence pants and left him in bed when he just needed some help. There was a lot of other things to complain about but I am not going to go on about them now. The physio ward was not equipped to deal with dementia and they didn't seem to do anything as far as I could see.

Anyway cut a long horror story short, dad came home after 3 weeks, 3 falls, a heart attack, a stroke and losing 2 stone in weight. He immediately returned to his previous lovely self (he was a bit of a monster in hospital and he had every right to be) although his memory was much worse and he didn't recognise most of his home anymore but he was happy enough. His mobility improved rapidly with the aid of his frame and he was soon taking himself to the bathroom again so yes he did very well. Dad was 88 when this happened and had already been diagnosed with cancer so he did incredibly well.

As for making sense, dad was away with the fairies the whole time he was in there. He had all sorts of delusions and turned quite evil towards me on occasions. Once he was home he was normal again and he forgot about his hospital stay immediately. It was like it had never happened.

Your nan may regain her mobility and she may get back to her old self but likely with less capabilities than before. It's a guessing game really. I did have to move in with dad when he came home and he never recovered to a degree that he could live independently again but he was still the dad that I knew. and as quick witted as before. Dad could not live alone anymore so I became his 24/7 carer which is not something I would recommend.

I hope you get to talk to someone soon.
Hello

thank you so much for your reply. You’ve honest given me some hope which made me feel so much better! I can’t believe your dad went through all of that and came through the other end! What an absolute trooper!! Luckily the hospital and ward my nan is in is amazing. The staff are so caring and aren’t just leaving her in bed all the time. They are encouraging her to use a commode and sit in a chair instead of bed. I just need to be patient I think and stay positive. Thank you though.

I am seriously considering potentially moving back in with my nan so I can care for her in between the carers coming but it’s something I need to really consider before making a decision. Luckily I only rent a flat so wouldn’t be a huge problem moving and I work from home anyway.

We shall see what happens. Thank you again for your response. I really appreciate it xx
 

CMS91

Registered User
Jul 22, 2019
20
Hi CMS91, everyone is different of course, but like your nan, my mum functions reasonably well. But my own experience is that when my mum has a decline in her physical health, or a brief hospital visit, her mental health/AD plummets. Then she starts doing peculiar things like putting soup on little plates, things in odd places, and she gets very confused verbally. She does gradually get back to her normal, but I find generally she goes up and down a bit anyway, and obviously dementia is a one way street. It was recently recommended to me to play music from the 50s - it’s been a revelation, like watering a parched plant and she really comes to life. Best of luck with the next little while 🙏🏻
Aww bless her! The music idea is amazing and is something I already do even before she went into hospital because it brings back so many good memories for her and to see her face light up is just amazing! Like you say, a parched plant coming back to life!! Thank you so much I really appreciate it ❤❤
 

canary

Registered User
Feb 25, 2014
13,691
South coast
I am seriously considering potentially moving back in with my nan so I can care for her in between the carers coming but it’s something I need to really consider before making a decision. Luckily I only rent a flat so wouldn’t be a huge problem moving and I work from home anyway.
Please think very carefully before making a decision like that. It is very easy to slide unwittingly into full-time caring - easy in but not so easy out, as the lobster said in the lobster pot. Caring for someone with dementia does not go easily with working from home because you are barraged with constant interruptions and often the person with dementia doesnt like you doing anything else apart from sitting with them.
 

Duggies-girl

Registered User
Sep 6, 2017
2,103
Thank you @CMS91 I am glad that I have given you some positive thoughts and a bit of hope.

I would echo @canary statement. It was incredibly difficult looking after dad full time and as I said he was probably one of the easiest alzhiemers patients to look after. He went to bed and went to sleep, he was lovely and was always polite and very funny. He also remained continent, I count my blessings really as he was no trouble but it still had me tearing my hair out at times and I really wanted it to be over with for both our sakes (sounds awful but it was true) and I loved him dearly and still do.

Really have a good think before moving in with your nan permanently. I did it but really it was a whole different life and not something that I would ever wish to repeat. It's hard