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Trouble with Clocks/Time

AnnaL

New member
Jun 30, 2021
3
0
My dad was dianosed with AD at the end of last year, so I'm really at the start of this journey. I'm hoping someone might have some good advice about a problem with clocks/time - my dad has been given a really nice calendar clock (a Memrabel 2 - awful name!) by the local memory service that he's taken against as being an "old person's clock" which he resents! The trouble is that lately he just doesn't believe the time it displays, so he ends up calling and texting people in the early hours of the morning. When I get him to verify what the clock says by checking it against his watch he says it's a conspiracy, and his latest 2am text to me claimed that lockdown was doing strange things to clocks! I'm at a loss as to what to do to help him believe it when his calendar clock says e.g. "Thursdy morning 3AM". He lives on his own so there isn't anyone on-hand to put him right. I'd be really grateful for any ideas or advice anyone might have...

SORRY! Seem to have posted this in totally the wrong place!
 
Last edited:

My Mum's Daughter

Registered User
Feb 8, 2020
128
0
Mum was struggling to distinguish between the two hands on a clock so I bought a "Tell the Time" wall clock. I'm not sure if your dad would accept this but for £10, it might be worth a look.
She also has a clock that's similar to the Memrabel 2 but without the reminders. This is only used for the day of the week and sometimes the date.
 

karaokePete

Registered User
Jul 23, 2017
6,279
0
N Ireland
Hello and welcome @AnnaL

I'm sorry to read about your problem but was also going to suggest trying another clock. You can go in to the Alzheimer's Society shop from this site and I think they have a number of clocks there.

My experience of this sort of thing is that they are of very limited value so are not worth stressing either your dad or yourself. When my wife was diagnosed I surrounded her with such items and she would still ask me the time, day, date etc. As memory and cognition fade it can become harder for a person with dementia to use and accept such things.
 

northumbrian_k

Volunteer Host
Mar 2, 2017
1,805
0
Newcastle
Hi @AnnaL and welcome to Dementia Talking Point. Trouble with dates and times seems common and not easy to get around. My wife would ask me the time, day or date many times a day. I bought her a clock that I thought would help but it did not stop her asking me. She hardly ever looked at the clock. It was quite expensive but did not keep time, often being wrong by 2 hours or more first thing in the morning. A dementia clock that goes wrong is useless.

Eventually my wife did start to look at it but only to read aloud what it said, sometimes several times over. I would endorse what @karaokePete says. Having proved itself useless the clock was fairly soon binned.

The conspiracy issue also seems common. Once someone with dementia has an idea in their head, logic and facts make no difference. I would say to my wife that it could not be mid-afternoon as it was pitch black outside. That reality did not change her view. If I suggested asking someone else she would then say that they could not be believed, being part of a conspiracy!

This does not help you I'm afraid. In our case my wife lost interest in time, days and dates. This eased things somewhat. It may be that this phase of confusion over time may lessen in your Dad too.
 

AnnaL

New member
Jun 30, 2021
3
0
Thank you all for your kind words and advice. I'm off looking at day/night clocks now as that might help. Generally it's not a problem, and certainly not something any of us fall out over, though I think his partner is losing patience with getting phone calls in the wee-small hours! (To be fair to his partner it takes a lot of patience to talk him through how to operate his TV when you're still half asleep!) He's always been an early riser, but 2 or 3 in the morning is more than the rest of us can stand, and tiredness makes his confusion worse so I'm hoping for something that might persuade him to try for more sleep instead of getting up and dressed at that hour.
 

karaokePete

Registered User
Jul 23, 2017
6,279
0
N Ireland
Thank you all for your kind words and advice. I'm off looking at day/night clocks now as that might help. Generally it's not a problem, and certainly not something any of us fall out over, though I think his partner is losing patience with getting phone calls in the wee-small hours! (To be fair to his partner it takes a lot of patience to talk him through how to operate his TV when you're still half asleep!) He's always been an early riser, but 2 or 3 in the morning is more than the rest of us can stand, and tiredness makes his confusion worse so I'm hoping for something that might persuade him to try for more sleep instead of getting up and dressed at that hour.
It may be an idea to talk to the GP about the early awakening. My wife was given meds that helped with her nocturnal activities.