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Update & The Twiddle Mitt for Dementia

Those of you following my blog, know my mother has dementia and has been in hospital for a while now. With the wrong medicine initially, and the trauma, her hearing and sight are now fairly badly impaired, although at a medium distance, she can still make things out, but not close up, even with glasses.  They missed her retina scan at the hospital, and I’m hopeful they actually take her to the rescheduled appointment this week as I’m working, but apart from that, she gets to rest a lot more and is generally much happier.

She’s had a rough time, but she came home for a visit today.  A few days ago, they told my husband they’d changed her care package to help me with her, apparently, from something different to what I was told, but nobody has told me what that is yet, and at the home visit today, they told me there’s no care……

She didn’t seem to recognise terribly much, and it’s clear the OT etc had no understanding of how little she could do before she went into hospital.  She’s seen as a significant risk of falls, which really isn’t any different to before, but with her dementia more advanced, her confusion is very sad.

The poor thing was frozen in her wheelchair when they got her here.  The OT who came with her looked a bit taken aback when I asked why she didn’t have her coat or any socks on, on a cold breezy day.

Social media, however, is amazing.  People regularly message me and ask how she is and one of my Twitter friends sent me a gorgeous twiddle mitt for her.  She’ll get more use of it at home than in hospital, where they don’t give it to her, and she only gets it if I’m in, but it’s a fabulous thing.  I’d never heard of them before.  With lots of stitched in little bits, and a wooden toggle inside, it’s great for warming hands and fiddling with.  The lovely purple mitt that I was sent, has tinsel wrapped around it, and a couple of little bells, and some fancy stitching.  It’s simple, and lovely at the same time.

I’d never heard of them before, but I’ve since seen them on e-bay, as I’ve been looking, and some hospitals have been asking for them to give to patients.  It was one of my Twitter friends who was knitting twiddle mitts for her local hospital, who knows about my mum, and very kindly sent me one.  The kindness of strangers is often overwhelming.

The blanket she has on her in this pic, is one I made when I was 15 – several decades ago…..  She used to recognise it as something from home, but I’ve taken it home and given her a thicker one, as at the moment, she doesn’t seem to recognise much from her old life, and is always cold, so the thicker blanket it is.  She’s getting thinner and thinner by the week, as she hardly eats anything, although she seems brighter than she has for a while.

Thanks to everyone who reads me, and sorry for the sporadic posts these last few months.  I am still here and pottering away with a few different things.  I hope to let you all know more soon.







2 thoughts on “Update & The Twiddle Mitt for Dementia

  1. I’m sorry to hear about your Mum, dementia is such a cruel disease. My father-in-law was diagnosed with Parkinsons with Lewy Body at the start of last year. He was hospitalized and given the wrong meds which made him have psychotic episodes, they also let him have his own medication at his bedside and he took too many!! They have said that they believe he is already 3-4 years into his prognosis so we have started to see a lot of decline in the last year which is very upsetting for the family. At the moment he has days where he is very lucid and able to hold good conversation but then other days he can barely string a sentence together, loses things and gets lost himself. He hates that he can no longer drive or take care of money and feels he is being treated like a baby. We completely understand this is only going to get harder too. I shall remember the Twiddle Mitts, sounds like a great idea. Big hugs to you and your family xxx

    1. Hi Sabina, thanks. I think my mum is close to end stage now, although she still looks bright on many days. She has stopped needing to eat. At the moment, she can still be persuaded to eat something, but it’s literally just a few mouthfuls a day. She’s lost stones in weight, so I doubt it will be too many months longer, but it’s surprising how efficient the human body can be when it gets used to low levels of food.

      The hardest part used to be before her memory went completely. She wasn’t lucky enough at that point to forget what was wrong with her, and anti depressants made a massive difference to her quality of life as the disease has progressed for her. Hospital is no place for people with dementia.

      I remember my mum being at the point your father in law is at. It’s really difficult at the first stages, and watching someone you love deteriorate is heartbreaking. It took me a while to get to the point where I accepted that all I’m doing now, is trying to make the end part of my mums life comfortable.

      I hope your father in laws journey is easier than my mums. It’s tough on everyone. x

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