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Leaning to the left?

Bear44

Registered User
Sep 28, 2015
126
USA
Good morning,

I saw some posts about your loved ones leaning to one side.

I've noticed over the last few months my father while sitting on the couch that he always leans to the left. FYI he is right handed.

Two questions

1. Is there any known reason for this?

2. If your loved ones do this, what side do they lean too?
 

Shedrech

Volunteer Moderator
Dec 15, 2012
9,228
Yorkshire
Hi Bear44

yes, my dad often leans to the left when sitting - he seems to lean and then put his hand under his chin with his elbow on the chair arm for support - sometimes, of course his arm 'goes to sleep' and he's somewhat confused by that, as no longer understands why - I changed his chair to one that fits around him better which helped a lot, though he's 'shrinking' so now there's more space in this chair - dad has Parkinson's and I'm not sure what's linked to this, what is just his 'normal' way of relaxing in a chair, and what is the dementia

he's right handed too

my dad has also done this while walking on occasion - I think he leans to the left then too, though it's a while since the last time, so not sure - the walking leaning seemed to be linked to his Parkinson's, when he is really tired or agitated - but also to constipation

would it be worth trying your dad on some senna tablets?

PS just read nae sporran's reply - dad had TIAs and a right occipital bleed which affected the left side esp his eyesight - not sure if there's a link
 
Last edited:

nae sporran

Volunteer Host
Oct 29, 2014
7,030
Bristol
Good morning,

I saw some posts about your loved ones leaning to one side.

I've noticed over the last few months my father while sitting on the couch that he always leans to the left. FYI he is right handed.

Two questions

1. Is there any known reason for this?

2. If your loved ones do this, what side do they lean too?
Good morning Bear. OH always leans left when sleeping on her chair, but her stoke 6 years ago affected her left eye and her left arm so I always assumed it was down to that.
 

bemused1

Registered User
Mar 4, 2012
3,402
However often I straighten my husband up he leans to the left. even when lying flat on his back he leans to the left after a while. Never managed to work out how he does it.
 

joggyb

Registered User
Dec 1, 2014
119
Good morning,

I saw some posts about your loved ones leaning to one side.

I've noticed over the last few months my father while sitting on the couch that he always leans to the left. FYI he is right handed.

Two questions

1. Is there any known reason for this?

2. If your loved ones do this, what side do they lean too?
My father started doing this in his care home a couple of months ago. The staff there told me it's often a sign of constipation. That proved to be case with him.
 

1mindy

Registered User
Jul 21, 2015
539
Shropshire
Not sure if this is of any relevance but having read this I know i always lean to the left . On a settee I always sit on the left and lean on the arm . In a chair I always lean to the left , my long term prognosis for left leaning cannot be good.. I am a 57 year old carer as far as I am aware with no problems.
 

marmarlade

Registered User
Jan 26, 2015
183
leaning to the left

hubby also leans but to the right,this has happened several times,was told it could be constipation so.kept asking the home to give him some thing for it ,some times they did ,some times they didnt .So have started giving him senokot when i visit 3 times a week and he now walks up straight,so it seems that constipation can play a role in this leaning,although it might not always be case worth a try
 

AlsoConfused

Registered User
Sep 17, 2010
1,953
... and my Mum leans backward.

We were told the "leaning" behaviour was due to Mum's dementia-caused inability to locate herself spatially. Presumably the brain cells necessary for this process weren't able to function properly any longer?
 

Izzy

Volunteer Moderator
Aug 31, 2003
62,753
69
Dundee
My husband leans to the left when sitting. Some days worse than others. I have one of those V shaped cushions which I try to position so his left arm leans on it and sort of prevents him from leaning - only sort of. He isn't constipated. I have evidence!:rolleyes:
 

nae sporran

Volunteer Host
Oct 29, 2014
7,030
Bristol
Hi Bear44

yes, my dad often leans to the left when sitting - he seems to lean and then put his hand under his chin with his elbow on the chair arm for support - sometimes, of course his arm 'goes to sleep' and he's somewhat confused by that, as no longer understands why - I changed his chair to one that fits around him better which helped a lot, though he's 'shrinking' so now there's more space in this chair - dad has Parkinson's and I'm not sure what's linked to this, what is just his 'normal' way of relaxing in a chair, and what is the dementia

he's right handed too

my dad has also done this while walking on occasion - I think he leans to the left then too, though it's a while since the last time, so not sure - the walking leaning seemed to be linked to his Parkinson's, when he is really tired or agitated - but also to constipation

would it be worth trying your dad on some senna tablets?

PS just read nae sporran's reply - dad had TIAs and a right occipital bleed which affected the left side esp his eyesight - not sure if there's a link
It's been a steep learning curve the past few years, Shedrech. I always assumed there was a connection, but the more I learn about dementia and related illness the less I assume about any of it. Best wishes to you and your dad.
 

Shedrech

Volunteer Moderator
Dec 15, 2012
9,228
Yorkshire
Thanks nae sporran :)
I'm with you; I've learnt so much in these few years; keep an open mind and keep thinking laterally; the only certainty is unpredictability; one day at a time; expect nothing from others, hope for just a little support; find something each day to smile about .....
and, of course, that the folks on TP are superstars
my best to you and your wife

Izzy - thanks ...
He isn't constipated. I have evidence!
... for sharing the thought - thank goodness you can't share the evidence
there's my smile for today :D
 

nae sporran

Volunteer Host
Oct 29, 2014
7,030
Bristol
Thanks nae sporran :)
I'm with you; I've learnt so much in these few years; keep an open mind and keep thinking laterally; the only certainty is unpredictability; one day at a time; expect nothing from others, hope for just a little support; find something each day to smile about .....
and, of course, that the folks on TP are superstars
my best to you and your wife

Izzy - thanks ...

... for sharing the thought - thank goodness you can't share the evidence
there's my smile for today :D
Thanks Shedrech. Best not think too much on the second part of that. :)
 

Izzy

Volunteer Moderator
Aug 31, 2003
62,753
69
Dundee
Thought you might like that! You have to smile eh?

Off to straighten my other half up before getting upstairs!
 

goatislord

Registered User
Aug 15, 2016
2
Leaning to the left/right experience and ideas

Hello all,

This is something I've recently come across with someone very close to me. I've spoken to some physios and dementia specialists and work with those living with dementia too. I'm not sure if I have the answer yet but I have a few ideas about what could be done that I hope may be useful.

The person in question has been leaning to his right when he's sat for a small while now. He's often found sleeping like this at almost a 90 degree angle. I think the cause of this is sitting balance due to dementia and let's face it, who doesn't lean a little when they doze!? I think there's a snowball affect after this happens for a while because of muscle inbalance, certainly stretching the muscles in the left side and maybe a strengthening of the muscles in the right. It makes it far more common to happen in the chair and after a certain stage it will start effecting your standing posture, especially on top of kyphosis where the person is stooped forward.

Ideas of how to prevent this situation progressively getting worse is to seat the person in a recliner chair. The closer you are to lying down the less likely you are to bend. The person may roll but the back will still be in decent allignment. Of course lying down will also prevent this but we don't want to encourage someone completely loosing their sitting balance and risk someone becoming unnecessarily bed bound. Depending on how well an individual can take instruction exercises would help solve the muscle imbalance but even if this is too tricky having someone lie down on the floor and complete back stretches can be achievable to varying degrees and can be done on behalf of the person.

A lot of what I'm talking about are on the presumption that there isn't some other neurological complication causing the one sided weakness but still what I've suggested may relieve it.

Please, if anyone wants to add more information or completely disprove what I've said PLEASE DO! I'm trying to find answers too and wish not to create false hopes but these are my thoughts and I'm going to start trying to put some of these points in place. I'll hopefully post outcomes, if anyone else would like to that would also be grand.
 

goatislord

Registered User
Aug 15, 2016
2
Addition to leaning to the left/right

Following on from my last post.

A good way to rule out whether it is a neurological problem or not is to ask the person to squeeze your hands and get them to push and pull you. If it proves that there's a weaker side there's a good chance it could be neurological. In the situation I'm enquiring into this is not the case.

Along with kyphosis, the slumping forward/hunching of the spine, another professional brought up scoliosis which describes this favouritism of left or right. Scoliosis describes the state or symptoms but causes of it could be weak or brittle spine. Look out for any history of arthritis and/or the prolonged use of steriods to prevent similar conditions. 12 weeks of continued steroid use could itself weaken the bones. Obviously there's only so much which can be done to maintain the deteriorated health of the spine but physio work will be able to readdress the imbalance of the muscles which the inital condition has caused.

Again, I hope this helps. Best of luck x
 

Georgina63

Registered User
Aug 11, 2014
956
I have seen this too

Hi Bear44
I have seen my mum leaning. I googled and checked on TP at the time and it seems quite common. First time was a lean to the side and then a couple of months back she was leaning back (so much so she was very unsteady on her feet) - it got better and became a lean to the side. When I spoke to the GP, one of the causes explained was possible discomfort and an inability to compensate, or to control muscles. The other morning she was stooping forward, that corrected itself. Seems like we've been in all directions! It's so difficult to try to figure out if it's in response to pain or discomfort which makes it all the more tricky.
Hope you find some useful insight. Georgina x
 

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