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Any ideas? - Carers UK Forum

Any ideas?

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Evening all.

As I wrote elsewhere my mum is home and although she is doing fairly well, she certainly is much more fragile than before she went into hospital.

I could do with your advice if anyone has any experience of a particular issue though..for quite a few months now, mum keeps falling asleep at odd times. I expect her to drop off to kip in her chair quite often but she also has a habit of popping her head down on the dining room table and having a nap there too.

All well and good, she is 90 after all but it is becoming a real problem. She would probably kill me for saying this but she nods off to sleep on the loo as well. Image It sounds quite comical and she had also been doing this long before the hospital admission but it worried me. I thought that if the circulation to her legs was affected, she could attempt to stand up and have a fall..I have a strong suspicion that is what happened with her fall on Christmas Day.

She has had the intensive rehab team visiting her at home,that is now due to finish and she saw the GP two days ago and all seems ok. We found out today that she had dropped off to sleep with her head on the dining room table again last night and was still there this morning. Also doing the nodding off on loo thing again, went in there at half ten this morning, woke at half two.

Has anybody had any experience of this amount of sleepiness in elderly carees and does anybody have any suggestions about what we could do? I am seriously considering getting a push button egg timer for the loo (she has severe arthritis and also carpal tunnel syndrome) so if she does sleep, she can't do it for too long!

I hate the idea of babying her but I am worried we could find ourselves in the same situation again.

Thanks. Image
Anything changed re her medication ?

Hi Robert

No she is on the same as before. Diuretics (80mg!), heart tablets, statins, painkillers..can't remember all of them but there is a lot.
My mum did this too, she used to fall asleep in the middle of a conversation,
I agree the danger is when she is in the toilet, getting back on her feet again. It
sounds like you have covered the medication, but have a wee double check on the
amount of painkillers she is taking. this could be having an effect now even if she
has been taking them for a while. does she seem content in herself.? no real bad
confusion. at this age I know it is very hard to tell. Hope things settle for you.
Take care
Could you get some sort of motion sensor alarm, so that when she is in the bathroom if she makes no movement for an inappropriate length of time a buzzer would sound to wake her up?
Both my parents do this at times.Had a chat with the GP last year,and she just said that it is common,that their current medication was not affecting this,and that there was no medication she could prescribe to keep them awake.She suggested keeping a diary and recording daily activities and working out what preceded the inappropriate sleeps.This i did and was able to change the way we do things slightly.Dad tended to be most likely to nod off in odd places in the early afternoon.He now gets up an hour later(generally),and has his breakfast before his wash.This seems to give him a bit more energy.Then,after lunch,generally has a nap on his bed(with the cat).Mum tended to fall asleep in the evening as soon as she had eaten,and would then be incontinent in the lounge.Now,after the evening meal,Mum goes to the toilet,has a cup of tea,and is ready for the soaps on tv.Think the combination of being full after her meal and bored with the news on tv made her sleepy.Now they rarely fall asleep in inappropriate places because with afternoon naps and altered activities they are ready to nap at specific times and can go to their bedrooms where it`s more comfortable and safer.The GP said that as we get older we get tired more easily,and that suddenly falling asleep at odd times and in odd places is very common.
My OH can sleep on a knife edge. Often find myself talking to myself and he has nodded off. He naps whenever he needs to now, but can go all day awake if something is taking his interest.

Take care
I don't wish to frighten anyone, but if this saves one persons life it's worth it. All of a sudden my big strong active husband started nodding off in his chair almost as soon as he sat in it. Then he died of a sudden massive heart attack at the age of 58. He had serious, but undetected, heart disease.