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My DH would like to sleep, in bed, all day. - Carers UK Forum

My DH would like to sleep, in bed, all day.

Share your ideas about the practical side of caring.
A little advice would be very welcome.
My DH, who is 88, has Alzheimer's, and also sclerosis & epilepsy.
Now, I know I should welcome, (and secretly I do) the fact that he would like to spend all day in bed, but nevertheless, it worries me because I feel that he will soon become totally bed-ridden.
What do members think? Should I encourage him to get up, washed and dressed at a reasonable time, about nine o'clock say, or let him stay in bed as long as he likes - which will be most of the day? :unsure:
Hello Leo :) I see you've been a member for a while but I think this is your first post, so firstly welcome to the forum, nice to meet you :)

Difficult one ! You don't say how advanced your hubby's dementia is and I'm presuming that the sclerosis also affects his mobility ? So could it be that on some level he 'knows' that he's more comfortable in bed than out of it; one problem with dementia would seem to be the inability to 'recognise' pain or to be able to say where the pain is. When my Mum (Alzheimers) was alive she would often say "I don't feel right" when pressed to get out of bed; after some questioning I'd finally find out that she was hurting somewhere (usually her hips or knees as she also had osteoarthritis). Once I had the reason for her wanting to stay in bed I was able to take appropriate action - usually a couple of painkillers with her breakfast did the trick so that an hour or so later she'd be saying "well, I can't stay here all day" !

But you're right the longer he keeps staying in bed, the weaker his muscles will become and he could, eventually, become bed-ridden. Are you able to take him out ?Perhaps if you were to plan a couple of short outings to somewhere he would like to go that would give him an incentive to get up, washed and dressed ?
Hi Leo

I have a similar problem with mum. She wanted to spend all day in bed, but on the advice of her physio we made her get up. Sometimes not till mid-day, but no later than that, and not very often. Only when it's obvious she's dead tired.
She has Alzheimer's too, and very poor mobility. We also have to give her a constitutional about every hour (a little walk with her walking frame even just around the room) to help her circulation.
Such simple little things, but they've helped. Her appetite is slowly coming back, and she takes more interest in things.
It's heavy going though, to begin with, but it's paying off now.... for the time being anyway.
From moaning like mad about her constitutionals, she now enjoys them.
Don't know if I've been of any help as everybody is different. But that's my personal experience.
Can't believe I get excited if mum eats two grapes? But I do!
Hi Leo, welcome. You don't mention if this is a new behaviour or not, I would check this with GP to rule out delirium, depression etc.
Hi Leo,
My wife has had dementia for about seven years now, and I have the same problem.

Her response to any suggestion is nearly always negative.....especially about getting up.

So I have adopted a more subtle approach, when I think its time for her to get up (depending on, how long she's been in bed, her condition and how much housework i've got left to do ) I enter and move noisily around the bedroom, deliberately disturbing her but not saying anything, after she has opened her eyes or is peeping at me through half closed eyelids, I tell her the time, what day it is, and what the weather is like. I never say anything about getting up or ask her a question.
I then say I'm going to put the kettle on now I will be back in a few minutes, and immediately leave the bedroom........... (giving her time to think)
After a few minutes I return and state that I am now going to put her socks on.... throw back the bottom corner of the duvet, and proceed with the socks........Then remove the bed clothes and say "come on" and offer my hands to help her out of bed,........ because this is a strict routine, she is used to it and generally complies.... about 95%. of the time. She does not get her cup of tea until she is showered or washed, dressed and hair done, then she is rewarded with a nice cup of tea.

I think its a case of not asking her.....sticking to a strict routine.....and just doing what has to be done. I am aware that every case is different, but this works for me and might be of some help to you.....best of luck ....and "Nil Carborundum" (don't be ground under )
Hi Leo. Oh, dear, I think I'm going to be the cruel mean one on this thread.

My mother (93) would happily spend all day in bed, and sneaks back into bed as soon as I leave her room. I spend all day every day making up reasons why she should get up. "Let's run and get your hands washed and then we'll have a cup of tea." "Your hair's a bit untidy. Come over to the dressing table and brush it." "I want to make dinner and haven't a clue what I'm doing. Come and help me." "There's a cockatoo outside! Quick! Come to the window!"

And for every meal, snack, or cup of tea she has to be up, hair brushed, hands washed, and seated at her table.

I feel a bit mean doing it, but at least it's a little exercise for her heart and muscles and hopefully it makes her feel somewhat involved in the outside world.

That's exactly what I do, only minus the cockatoos. Sometimes I wonder if I'm being mean, but then I notice the improvements, gird my loins, and carry on being a pain in the arse who "Worries too much."
The walking sticks have been a battle. At first she wouldn't touch them as she didn't need them (she bloody well did), then she had no choice. Now she has a walking frame, which is much better for her balance (she never did get the hang of those walking sticks) and now she cry's out for her sticks!
Each time I gently, but firmly guide her to the walking frame instead. Each time she praises it to the skies, but insists on her walking sticks being near by.
The trouble is, she forgets and goes to grab her walking sticks.
I then decided to come up with a cock & bull story about how the NHS (sorry NHS) won't allow you to have both walking sticks and a walking frame at the same time. She had to choose. I made her experiment with both (mean, I know.) She chose the walking frame.
I've now hidden those blasted walking sticks (she'd wave them in the air rather than walk with them) and now mum is zapping around with her zimmer frame. Bit of an exaggeration, but zapping around by her previous standards.
I think I may have made a rod for my own back, but seeing her get to the toilet under her own steam is worth it.
And seeing her talk to her plants is beyond priceless, even if she doesn't do it that often.
My dears - Thanks to all six of you for your swift, and constructive thoughts.
You've given me several good ideas, and what is more, you've confirmed
my instinctive feeling that I should gently force the issue about not lurking
too long in bed.
I hope you all had a reasonably happy holiday weekend.
Perhaps this is the time to ask Social services for an assessment of both your needs?
If the dementia is getting worse, it might be the right time for mum to get used to outzide help, giving you a short bit of time off. "Nurses" ie paid carers in uniform might be seen as people to be obeyed? Only you know how mum will react. Always try to think a little bit ahead. My mum is physically very frail, and after a long stay in hospital is now in a nusing home. I had to take the lead, helping mum realise that she was simply too poorly to go home., The more you can think ahead, and plan, the easier it will be, to avoid a crisis. "Shared" care, either with a care agency involved, or a day centre, shouldn't be seen as failure, it's really saying that you want to care for as long as you feel able to. .

Hugs to you too Leo. :)