Is this normal

tarababe

Registered User
Sep 9, 2012
192
Durham
Hi everyone

We had mum at our house as usual fro Xmas day. Normally we drive her home as she was in the past always making excuses not to stay. This year though, we had other relatives here and didn't want the hour drive to mums again so decided to get her to sleep here. We did everything we could for her safety, from a child gate at the top of the stairs, a child's movement light in her room that comes on when she gets out of bed to leaving a light on in the spare room. During the day she had a few glasses of wine plus bucks fizz and later gin and tonic. Quite a bit for her and as the day developed, she was getting more and more confused. Thinking she was at her day centre and our relatives were carers etc.

Then came bed time. After a lot of fussing as she always does, eventually she went to bed at about 9pm. Then she got up at 9.30pm and then every hour through out the night. She was turning lights on and off, opening doors inc the airing cupboard, coming into our bedroom and turning our light on and constantly needing the loo. It didn't stop all night and none of us got any sleep.

We took her home at lunch time and she seemed fine once in her house.

What I am assuming, correctly or not, is that strange locations especially those that she is not familiar with (Our house being one of them as she never wants to come) and possibly mixed with alcohol, sent her in to a state of utter confusion. She really was just wandering constantly not sure where she wanted to be.

Is this correct what I am thinking and getting her back home has put her back to whatever for her is normal?

Would love some advice as it has really upset me to see her in this state.:eek:
 

Nebiroth

Registered User
Aug 20, 2006
3,511
You're almost certainly correct. Many people with dementia simply cannot cope with change and become much more confused when they are removed from their normal environment. The same usually happens if, for example, they have to stay in hospital.

I'd also say that the alcohol probably didn't help.

If the confused state persists when your mum returns home then it's worth having her checked for a urine infection. UTI's, as they are called, are notorious for producing these effects and there are very often no other obvious symptoms most people associate with a UTI. Any infection is very easy to check for using a simple dipstick test in a urine sample.
 

Aquaria

Registered User
Dec 10, 2012
12
I don't know for sure if this is normal but a similar situation occurred with my mum last year at Christmas. She was so distressed to find herself in unfamiliar surroundings when she awoke it was difficult to settle her down. The rest of the family became upset too. That is why I decided not to remove her from her own home after that even though it may seem a good idea, and a change for her. This year for Christmas Day she stayed in the comfort of her own home 100 miles away doing what she always does. Yes, she was bored and yes, I felt guilty but we had a great Christmas lunch. For her it was just another day despite me telling her umpteen times that it was Christmas. I don't think alcohol and dementia is a good combination so I would avoid this at all cost in the future.
 

Onlyme

Registered User
Apr 5, 2010
4,995
UK
It may be that this is what normally happens during your Mum's night time. Until someone stays overnight there you won't know. Being in a different location will make things much worse but she may already be moving about at night.

If you don't already have one it might be a good idea to get an alarm on the front door connected to a monitoring service. If she decides to leave the house during the night the alarm will alert the monitoring service and they will contact you or your family.
 

tarababe

Registered User
Sep 9, 2012
192
Durham
Thanks everyone for your wonderful advice. It's strange, but maybe the constantly going to the loo that night is a sign of a UTI and mixed with the strange location and alcohol could have made it much worse. Oh and now I recall her holding her back but I though she was referring to her hips and arthritis, but it may have been her kidneys.

It's so hard to do the best and the right thing, whatever that is and living so far away doesn't help. I can't do anything about that but I think next year I may see if there is something her day centre do on Christmas day or even respite for the day. I can't see her in that state again if it's for these reasons.

I will phone the doctors tomorrow and see about sorting out a sample to check for UTI.

Thanks for your advise, it's so good to know others have gone through similier things and we are not alone.:)
 

tarababe

Registered User
Sep 9, 2012
192
Durham
Just wanted to update you. I went to mums today and the doctors and took a urine sample in. The nurse dip sticked it and said there was blood in it and gave her some anti boo tics until they got the results back from the lab on Monday/Tueday. She said she was having to guess what to give her, but would know if it was the right tablets on Monday/Tuesday. At least she is getting something in the interim.

Of course I am hoping it's just an infection and nothing more sinister but I am so glad I came on here to seek advise as you were right that there was possibly a UTI involved.;)
 

Nebiroth

Registered User
Aug 20, 2006
3,511
Urine infections often cause traces of blood in the urine. The dipstick test looks for these as well as other things. Usually there is more concern if the dipstick indicates blood only. If this persists then other tests might be considered. Blood could come from a number of causes. There are a number of them and most are fairly easily treated.

The nurse has probably prescribed broad-spectrum antibiotics or antibacterials. The most common one used is Trimethoprim. The sample will have been sent to a laboratory to indentify the exact bacteria causing the infection; if necessary, this enables the most effective treatment if the broad-spectrum one doesn't clear things up.

The back pain as you say could have been kidney pain. Typically in the lower back and sometimes radiating down the flanks and thighs. It could have bene an infection in the kidneys or possible a stone. Kidney stones usually caus epain when they move (and this can be excruciating if they get stuck in the tube that runs from the kidneys to the bladder). Stones can in themselves cause blood in the urine and infections. They are normally harmless except the symptoms they cause and often are passed, sometimes painfuly, but also sometimes without the person being aware of it.

I'm sure that when you heard "blood in the urine" you thought of bladder cancer. This is rare, it usually causes visible blood in the urine and in any case it is very treatable - if it is caught early. Traces of blood in the urine usually refers to microscopic haematuria - ie it can only be detected using a dipstick or microscope.

Persistent MH whose cause cannot be identified in someone over 50 usually means more tests. The most common is a cystoscopy; passing a fibre optic camera into the bladder to examine it. This is, for obvious reasons, more unpleasant for a man than a woman! It is very quick.

I had unexplained traces of blood about a year ago. I had a cystoscopy that revealed everything was normal. The consultant had told me beforehand that only one in thousands actually revealed anything sinister - but they had to be sure.

The blood was never explained and had in fact disappeared by the time I saw the consultant. I had lots of tests including ultrasounds, CT scans, prostate tests all of which came back normal!
 

tarababe

Registered User
Sep 9, 2012
192
Durham
Urine infections often cause traces of blood in the urine. The dipstick test looks for these as well as other things. Usually there is more concern if the dipstick indicates blood only. If this persists then other tests might be considered. Blood could come from a number of causes. There are a number of them and most are fairly easily treated.

The nurse has probably prescribed broad-spectrum antibiotics or antibacterials. The most common one used is Trimethoprim. The sample will have been sent to a laboratory to indentify the exact bacteria causing the infection; if necessary, this enables the most effective treatment if the broad-spectrum one doesn't clear things up.

The back pain as you say could have been kidney pain. Typically in the lower back and sometimes radiating down the flanks and thighs. It could have bene an infection in the kidneys or possible a stone. Kidney stones usually caus epain when they move (and this can be excruciating if they get stuck in the tube that runs from the kidneys to the bladder). Stones can in themselves cause blood in the urine and infections. They are normally harmless except the symptoms they cause and often are passed, sometimes painfuly, but also sometimes without the person being aware of it.

I'm sure that when you heard "blood in the urine" you thought of bladder cancer. This is rare, it usually causes visible blood in the urine and in any case it is very treatable - if it is caught early. Traces of blood in the urine usually refers to microscopic haematuria - ie it can only be detected using a dipstick or microscope.

Persistent MH whose cause cannot be identified in someone over 50 usually means more tests. The most common is a cystoscopy; passing a fibre optic camera into the bladder to examine it. This is, for obvious reasons, more unpleasant for a man than a woman! It is very quick.

I had unexplained traces of blood about a year ago. I had a cystoscopy that revealed everything was normal. The consultant had told me beforehand that only one in thousands actually revealed anything sinister - but they had to be sure.

The blood was never explained and had in fact disappeared by the time I saw the consultant. I had lots of tests including ultrasounds, CT scans, prostate tests all of which came back normal!

Thanks for this info Nebiroth, its always a worry that it could be wore than it is. There was no visible blood in the urine so fingers crossed it's just an infection that anti biotics will clear up.

Now comes the difficult job of getting her to take another 4 tablets a day. So far seems to have done it although I think she has taken 2 this morning, argghhhh. Not to worry, as long as she takes them at reasonable gaps for the rest I'm sure it will be ok.:rolleyes: