1. stanleypj

    stanleypj Registered User

    Dec 8, 2011
    10,572
    North West
    Sue has always slept more or less in one position - on her left side. Only rarely have I ever seen her in any other position. So I get her into that position before she goes to sleep. Sometimes in the night she will roll over on her back and then her mouth will fall open. This leads to her getting a dry mouth and she then has a tendency to rapidly pant, which sounds quite worrying. I usually get her to take a small sip of water which helps and then I re-position her. I have tried putting a pillow behind her and this sometimes stop her rolling again.

    I am familiar with the argument that she should be regularly turned but there have, touch wood, been no pressure sore problems so far. I suspect many people sleep all night in one basic position - I know I do.

    She has always preferred a flat pillow. We actually posses an extraordinary number of different pillows and I wondered about trying a real stuffed full of feathers one into which her head might sink and stay.

    Any comments?
     
  2. Prospector

    Prospector Registered User

    Sep 30, 2014
    61
    Trowbridge, Wiltshire
    My wife always used to sleep on her side, sometimes almost front-down. Since developing dementia, she tends to lie in strange positions, frequently on her back which tends to make her snore. Before dementia, I could gently nudge her onto her side to stop the snoring (I am a light sleeper), but now it agitates her and is rarely successful.
    I have found some anti-snore pillows from a well-known mail order supplier which consist of a sort of picture-frame shape of foam with a hollow in the middle. They do seem to help provided my wife gets her head in the right position, and are so comfortable that I bought one for myself. You may have one of these already of course. If not, it's worth adding to your collection.


    Sent from my iPhone using Talking Point
     
  3. stanleypj

    stanleypj Registered User

    Dec 8, 2011
    10,572
    North West
    Thanks Prospector. We have got a number of pillows that are similar to the one you describe. So far I've only tried quite a flat version which didn't seem to make much difference. I think I probably need to try others. My feeling about the big feather packed one is that Sue's head might sink quite nicely into it and be held in place. A complication is that her legs are fairly mobile at times and this can end up prompting her upper body and head to move.
     
  4. jimbo 111

    jimbo 111 Registered User

    Jan 23, 2009
    5,078
    North Bucks
    hello Stanley
    I have used a orthopaedic pillow for many years recommended by physiotherapists,
    they can be quite expensive and I originally tried to economise by buying pillows from newspaper adverts ,but they were never successful
    the pillow is a rather dense foam with a positive groove that holds the neck and shoulders in a comfortable position
    I normally sleep on my back , but when I have needed to sleep on my side the pillow has been equally effective
    jimbo
     
  5. Gigglemore

    Gigglemore Registered User

    Oct 18, 2013
    526
    British Isles
    Airflow

    Hi Stanley

    Apologies if you have already discussed and discounted the idea on your main thread (I only pop in now and then) but would an airflow mattress save you from any concerns re Sue sleeping in one position at night? I have seen them on offer on an online Care store I've used for other supplies for less than £250.

    My Mum is in a nursing home so they arranged one but it seems quite old and does make a slight noise. Mum is a bit deaf so does not notice the noise but hopefully newer models are quieter.

    If Sue is moving her legs then that must be helping the circulation anyway, and as we know who her no. 1 carer is we know that her skin care will be tiptop!

    Hope you are having a good day.
     
  6. 2jays

    2jays Registered User

    Jun 4, 2010
    11,539
    West Midlands
    Don't know if this will help

    I have a back problem and have tried so many pillows.

    The best for me is a soft squishy one - mine happens to be feather, but I have used those synthetic ones - and scrunch it into a long soft roll that goes between my chin and shoulder and lay my head on another pillow. As far as I'm aware.... I don't move as I always wake up in the same position.


    Sent from my iPhone using Talking Point
     
  7. jeany123

    jeany123 Registered User

    Mar 24, 2012
    19,049
    Durham
  8. stanleypj

    stanleypj Registered User

    Dec 8, 2011
    10,572
    North West
    Thanks jimbo. I use one of those pillows when I need to and Sue has one as well, sold by the company that produce the 'Backfriend'. It used to work quite well for her but doesn't seem so effective now.
     
  9. stanleypj

    stanleypj Registered User

    Dec 8, 2011
    10,572
    North West
    This could be what's needed Gigglemore. As we have been provided with a hospital bed with a standard mattress I may be able to get them to exchange it.

    I agree about Sue's legs. Thanks for your kind comment. I think the Medihoney barrier cream which we now have on prescription is really helping to keep her most vulnerable areas clear.

    OK day so far thanks. Wish you a good one too.
     
  10. stanleypj

    stanleypj Registered User

    Dec 8, 2011
    10,572
    North West
    Thanks 2jays. All these ideas are useful in that they present with different things to try.
     
  11. stanleypj

    stanleypj Registered User

    Dec 8, 2011
    10,572
    North West
    Thanks jeany - another idea that I'll have a good look at. Useful as well for sitting up support I would think.
     
  12. nita

    nita Registered User

    Dec 30, 2011
    1,786
    Female
    Essex
    Hi, Stanley. My Mum has a hospital bed and airflow mattress, both provided by the local equipment service through our council. Not the same problem as my Mum is immobile but she still needs turning on each carer visit. To keep her on her side and prevent her going onto her back, we put two fairly bulky pillows behind her and another smaller one between her knees. I know you're not supposed to put anything on an air mattress but the DN agreed her comfort was paramount.

    She did get pressure sores, even on the air mattress, when lying on her back, but now is completely free of them. She does sleep with her mouth open and gets very dry, also snores. We use Proshield Plus as a barrier gel to prevent pressure sores. She also has gel pads for her feet and elbows for the same reason.
     
  13. stanleypj

    stanleypj Registered User

    Dec 8, 2011
    10,572
    North West
    Thanks nita, I'm learning a lot just from this one thread!
     
  14. Izzy

    Izzy Volunteer Moderator

    Aug 31, 2003
    58,980
    Female
    Dundee
    Hi Stanley

    Bill sleeps on his back with the back of the hospital bed raised slightly. I change this angle depending on whether he has any chesty type problems or not. He used a flat pillow, sometimes 2 depending on the angle of the back of the bed. We have a v shaped pillow but he doesn't like it at all in bed and can't seem to get comfy with it. He uses it when he is sitting downstairs. I like the sound of the pillow which Prospector has described. During the night Bill seems to manage to move down the mattress and often I find him with his head resting on the actual mattress and the pillow/s above him. This happens no matter what angle I have the back at.

    Good luck with your search for the right pillow. I'll be interested in finding out if you decide on a particular one.
     
  15. nita

    nita Registered User

    Dec 30, 2011
    1,786
    Female
    Essex
  16. bemused1

    bemused1 Registered User

    Mar 4, 2012
    3,403
    same as gigglemore, we have an air flow mattress and pressure reducing chair. We also have a Toto, which is an automatic turning device. we have had bed sores but manually turning him every 2 hours is not realistic.

    As far as pillows go, one fairly flat one and the head of the bed raised. No matter how we prop him up he will roll back onto his back. He does snore and wake sometimes choking but in the scheme of things a little choking is easily remedied by changing the head position.

    as usual this is related directly to my husband who's mobility is non existent. hopefully sue will improve
     
  17. stanleypj

    stanleypj Registered User

    Dec 8, 2011
    10,572
    North West
    Thanks Izzy. I have wondered about raising the back slightly. I might try it as an alternative to shifting Sue when she's already got onto her back. Perhaps her mouth would be les inclined to stay open?
     
  18. stanleypj

    stanleypj Registered User

    Dec 8, 2011
    10,572
    North West
    That's still my hope Bemused but it's unlikely to happen unless someone pulls their finger out. I'm going to speak to the GP about his report for the CHC meeting and I'll try to get him to refer her to the NHS Domiciliary Physio unit (which I came across online) in our area. The Intermediate Care Team have been a real let-down. They have signed her off, purely because they're 'only a short-term service'. They might consider her again when her PD medication is reviewed - that's some time in Sept!:(:(
     
  19. Izzy

    Izzy Volunteer Moderator

    Aug 31, 2003
    58,980
    Female
    Dundee
    That's possible. Bill doesn't sleep with his mouth open. After years of attempting to do that because of nasal polyps I can sympathise with Sue. It feels awful when you wake up!
     
  20. tre

    tre Registered User

    Sep 23, 2008
    1,353
    Herts
    We too have an airflow mattress which definitely gives David a more comfortable night's sleep. Recently when we were away we had an ordinary mattress and he was awake in the night much more often like he was before we had the mattress.
    He sleeps on his back and his mouth falls open and he snores and also phlegm seems to gather in his throat. He has ankylosing spondiolytis so his back is quite bent so it is quite hard to find a comfortable position. He will not stay on his side. I am going to try raising the head of the bed a little to see if this helps but it may just end up with his sliding down the bed. Same as with Sue his legs move around a lot in bed.
    I would try to get an air mattress for Sue.
    I did ask the GP to do a test on the phlegm to see if it could be treated of if it was just something we would have to live with. THe sample only went in on Tuesday so the jury is still out.
    I also have tried many different pillows but none have made a discernable difference.
    Tre
     

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