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MY WIFE AGE 83 HAS VASCULAR DEMENTIA - Carers UK Forum

MY WIFE AGE 83 HAS VASCULAR DEMENTIA

For issues specific to caring for someone with dementia.
I HAVE BEEN CARING FOR MY WIFE NOW FOR 7 YEARS...... SINCE SHE HAD TWO STROKES WHICH LEFT HER WITH DEMENTIA. I DON'T MIND THE CARING AND THE EXTRA WORK AND AM FORTUNATE IN THAT SHE ATTENDS A DAY CARE CENTRE TWO DAYS A WEEK.
SHE CANNOT DO ANYTHING FOR HERSELF, SHE IS EXTREMELY FRAGILE AND WEAK AND WITH THE PROGRESSION OF DEMENTIA SHE NOW KEEPS CALLING OUT MY NAME EVERY FEW SECONDS........ ITS THIS LATTER PROBLEM WHICH IS WEARING ME DOWN......SHE DOESN'T KNOW SHE IS DOING IT
HAS ANY READER EXPERIENCED THIS PROBLEM AND IF SO HAVE YOU COME UP WITH ANY IDEA HOW TO COMBAT THE STRESS IT CAUSES.
Hi Harry. I don't have experience with that, although my father did have dementia caused by strokes. Of course, he was just my father, too. The only thing I can say is that your wife is getting the best of care and somehow you have to find enough strength from that to not let the stress get to you too much. And I really can see how what you've described would be intensely stressful.

You've probably thought of this and it's probably a stupid idea, but might giving your wife an item of your clothing to hold, such as a jumper, calm her down a little?
Hi Harry,

Welcome to the forum, you've come to the right place for moral support and to pick up great hints and tips from other carers. :)

I'm sorry to hear about your wife and the stress that you're going through right now. I was a part time carer for my father (84, dementia, mobility problems and alcoholic), until he went into a care home last July, and I found that situation quite tough, even though I'm years younger than him and didn't live with him. I can't begin to imagine how tough things are for you, coping with all this when you are of a similar age yourself and may well have your own health issues to deal with.

It does sound like your wife may be progressing to the stage where she either needs a lot more support at home, from professional carers, or to go into a care home, for your health, as much as anything else. Do you have a support network in place so that you can step away for regular breaks?

I have no experience with a caree constantly calling out my name, but can imagine it's a bit like torture at times. :( I'm so sorry I can't think of any way to solve the calling out problem, but maybe others can come up with solutions.
Many thanks for both of your prompt replies, very much appreciated.

I have as you suggested just tried the "jumper" method, but unfortunately it hasn't worked, I will try a different item tomorrow.

With regards to stepping away for regular breaks, I am fortunate, in that my wife attends a day care centre two days a week from 10 00 am till 4 00 pm. this has started in the last couple of months, and I am certainly finding it beneficial, after 7 years of 24 /7 caring; also my daughter and son in law come away with us on holidays to help out and give me a bit of free time. Other members of the family help out at other times, when requested.

It has been observed that my wife has periods of time when she goes through different phases of "particularities . These generally stop after a few months and then she starts a different one.....I'm hoping this is the case with this calling out, because its the worst one yet.

And yes I am disabled myself, age 82, so it gets tough at times.......but we plough on and make the best of what we've got, thanks once again for the moral support.
Harry
Harry, if the jumper idea doesn't work, I wondered if playing her some of her favourite music might have a calming effect. Or, and this might be really stupid, giving her a stuffed toy to hold who can be her "friend" when you're not there or not directly in her vision.

Regarding the phases, I think it might well wear off after a bit. I've cared for my 93 year old mother for 10 years and in the early stages she was constantly asking if she had enough money for her funeral. Apparently she had some idea that she would die and her body be left out on the street. :blink: It was constant and went on for a bit, driving me crazy, but thankfully it disappeared and she went on to other things.
Hi Koala,

I think we must be thinking along the same lines here..........because I recently bought a dog, for therapeutic reasons.

Its a retired racing greyhound, he's eight, bought from the retired greyhound racing kennels, he is wonderful, very intelligent, and affectionate, he knows there is something not quite right with my wife, and treats her accordingly, in the day time he sleeps by the side of her chair and if we are out walking with her in the wheelchair he will not leave her side.

She has accepted him and is aware of his presence in the home occasionally looking, to make sure he's still there.

Considering she has no interest in anything and has no memory (long or short term), the dog has given her something to think about........but not enough to stop her calling out.

Bit more work for me ......but his companionship makes it worth while.
Harry, a dog! Fantastic! And well done for getting a retired racing greyhound.

We have two rescued dogs and a cat. Not only are they company for Mum, but they also provide an almost constant source of something to talk about. I also often turn things completely on their tail and ask Mum to look after or keep an eye on a dog or a cat. She can't really, of course, but I think she appreciates the feeling of having an animal there that needs her care.

And the dog will be excellent therapy for you, as well.

Sorry, I should have mentioned it before, but make sure that you do things for yourself as well, like playing your favourite music just for yourself.
I do !!!.......

Jimmy Chan Pianist, relaxing piano...&....Klaus Wunderlick on organ.

Whilst my wife is at day care centre I have a couple of games snooker with newly found friends in the over 60's club.

Do some Shopping.....................or. weather permitting get out on local farm doing some metal detecting.

And of course there's always dog walkies.

The grass around here never gets very tall !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! L O L. :P :P :P :P
Hello Harry and welcome to the forum :)

Koala's idea of a stuffed toy is a good one - one of our previous members bought his Mum a 'baby' doll which she loves to dress and 'play' with so perhaps something like that might help ?

I'm glad to hear that you do get some 'me' time - it is so important to look after yourself (something that many Carers just 'forget' to do because their time is so full of looking after their Caree).
Excellent, Harry! I'm glad you're remembering to do things for yourself. :)

The snooker sounds like fun, but I really like the idea of the metal detecting. Fresh air, a bit of exercise, and the chance of finding something interesting. What could be better? Have you made any good finds? And does the dog go with you or would he just get in the way?