Routines in dementia
When I was diagnosed as having early onset Lewy body dementia, my consultant told me to do a few things to help get through the day, and also keep the brain active.
One of these was to set up a daily routine.
This takes in most things I do, from getting out of bed on a morning, until I go to bed at night.
It also takes in medication, although my wife sets this all up in a box, on a weekly basis, but still somehow manage to miss the occassional dose.
These routines not only help us, but also relieve the pressure on our carers and family members, as it allows us to get on with our chores on our own. This also allows our carers to get on with other things without having to check whether we have done things for ourselves.
However there are pitfalls in this, if I am away from home, in a hotel, or staying with the family as some of this changes.
Things also go wrong if something like the door bell or telephone ring, then I forget where I got to, which can be stressful at times
One day I went to have a shave, and someone telephoned our home so I had to answer as my wife was busy.
It was a few hours later when we were out shopping that I realised that I had shaved one side of my face, and missed the other when the telephone rang. That felt very embarrassing and I felt I had to get back home to shave the other side, even though my wife said that it was not as obvious as it felt.
But these things happen when you have this illness.
This has all been made much worse now, as I have extra things to take on board as I have problems with my hip and knee.
I now have to do exercises, which takes around half an hour to deal with and this gets stressful.
The reason being that it has to be done in stages, counting up to five, ten times at each stage.
But the slightest noise, I forget where I am.
This is the joy of living with this illness, and it proves that nothing is as easy as it seems.
But we have to keep trying, because we want to retain our freedom for as long as we can
An active brain fights to remain active and alive.