My elderly Mom used to be more engaged but this last year she spends more and more time in bed and nothing else. I have talked with the doctor and psychiatrist. She says she is not depressed, just not feeling well. I am sympathetic as she is almost 89, but seeing her in bed all the time in the small place we share is depressing me. Can anyone suggest anything? Other than moving out to another place I find I cannot change her behavior. Maybe only how I react to it. I don't know what 88 is like. If you are taking care of someone with a similar situation, please let me know. Thank you..

My Mom (90) sleeps a great deal too. She loves her bed and bedroom. She's not depressed, just very tired. After I bathe her she will need to nap. If I force her to get up she dozes off on the couch or outside in a deck chair. I read that elderly folks with dementia do not get enough REM sleep so need more. I decided that when she's asleep, that's blessed time to myself.
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Reply to BernerMom
XenaJada Jul 22, 2021
Getting old is exhausting. My mom said the other day how tired she gets just doing one thing each day (for example: 3 loads of laundry will put her down for 2 days). At 91 I expect nothing from her.

Sometimes we have expectations that simply are not possible to meet with our elders. I'd make sure she's hydrated, fed healthy food choices and bathed regularly and if she chooses to sleep the rest of the time, who is she hurting?
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Reply to Midkid58

You should have her dr evaluate her if she is not feeling well.

At 89 my father was wishing he'd died already. He felt old, tired and useless - especially as the falls and dementia were taking over his life. Dad's loss of independence took a big toll on him. He lived until 91 but did less and less - he lived and slept in his recliner - he even died in that recliner. Yes he was depressed but for him it was more being tired of life and waiting for death to visit him. He constantly asked why he wouldn't die - he was afraid his heart wouldn't stop; he was afraid God had forgotten about him. At one point I told him that maybe he hadn't finished his work on this earth.

On the other hand, mom turned 88 this year and is doing well - I actually moved her last week from AL back to IL - she was in AL because dad had needed it. The first year after dad's death she didn't want to move - but after being in lock down for the past year and the decline in the facility she lived in all of a sudden she couldn't wait to move. Mom just continues to plug along.

I wish you luck.
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Reply to cweissp
againx100 Jul 21, 2021
Pretty amazing to go to IL when you're 88! Good for her!
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I believe our aging loved ones, like young children, need sensory stimulation. For my husband I try to accomplish this with many things -- reminiscing conversations, listening to beautiful music, watching movies together, I read aloud to him, take him for a ride in the car and sometimes go to DQ for ice cream cone or a malt, whatever I can think of. I wish you well. I was getting depressed and am doing these things as much for me as I am for my husband. It helps.
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Reply to SweetSioux

My mom lived to be 95. She slept a lot! Mostly in her recliner. Some older people don’t have much energy. Mom would get exhausted just walking from her bedroom to the kitchen table. Many times I brought food to her room to eat.

After doctor appointments, she was wiped out! At one time we would enjoy stopping somewhere for lunch afterwards.but that changed and she was ready to go home to relax in her chair again.

It’s tiring for caregivers because I always felt as if I was living the same life as my mom. It’s hard for a younger caregiver to remain so sedentary. I would ride my exercise bike to move for awhile. I used to go for walks but there came a time that I couldn’t leave my house, so I had to use my bike more.
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Reply to NeedHelpWithMom
OnlyDaughter777 Jul 22, 2021
Yes, that is it, "I feel like I am living the same life as her". I don't want to and am trying to get out more, but, it is hard with little friends in the area. I have been going to meetups to get out.
I can’t say that my dad sleeps all the time because the opposite is true of him. He is 93 and has more energy than is good for him and it’s exhausting as well as depressing for my 88 yr old mother, his wife and caregiver.
He wakes up at 7am and does not lay down again until 10pm. Medicine to relax him didn’t help.
He is in full dementia swing all day long.
I guess what I’m saying is no matter how it plays out, dementia is hard on everyone.
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Reply to IamAmy

My 94+ year old mother would have either died or taken to her bed long ago if she hadn't been living in Assisted Living and now Memory Care Assisted Living since 2014. She's got a bunch of others to schmooze with, a bunch of activities to keep her busy, and 3 meals and 3 snacks a day to keep her entertained, not to mention mini bus trips once a month at least. She doesn't feel good a day in her life with chronic pain, depression, dementia and a terrible outlook on life, but the hubbub in the ALF keeps her engaged. If she lived with me, she'd have died of boredom long ago, or her chronic pain would keep her in bed, I'm sure. In the Memory Care AL, the residents have to be up and dressed every day by 10am the latest, so she has no choice in the matter until she's on hospice. The doc is changing her anti depressants on Thursday to something stronger to help stabilize her mood swings.

You have no info at all in your profile, so it's hard to give you advice about your mom's situation. Ask her doctor what s/he thinks is the best course of action to take, if anything.

Best of luck
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Reply to lealonnie1

My mom who's also 89 also sleeps a considerable part if each day. I read recently--probably on Aging Care 😊--that oftentimes the elderly sleep so much out of boredom-!! But, when you think about it, that makes sense. TV gets old, the ability to sew or knit or do handcrafts gets more difficult, reading may be harder to do--so with less stimulation boredom takes hold.
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Reply to YardParty

You have great recommendations here. Start with her PCP. Does she have a UTI, unbalanced blood glucose, hypothyroid, (whatever). Medical issues must be ruled out first and foremost. If she is healthy, help her get up and going in the morning. Plan her day for her. Get her into a senior program with something to do. You will find out immediately if this is "I won't" or she can't. Mom might just be old and tired. Find a place where she can be comfortable during the day reading, watching TV or dozing. Then, as long as she is safe, you can get on with what you need to do. What you do have to accept is that Mom can't be your roommate anymore. She can no longer do what she used to, and you need to learn what help she will need and decide if you can do it or someone else is needed.
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Reply to DrBenshir

Could she be needing more social stimulation? Mom's memory care facility made a practice of keeping all the residents out of their rooms and engaged in multiple daily activities. She was discouraged from having a TV in her room. Even during Covid residents were kept in the open areas so even if they just sat and watched they were at least being engaged.

My sister works in a large Masonic Village community. She said the isolation caused by the Covid lockdown was apparent in residents at all levels of care.

Is it possible to take your mother to an adult daycare a day or two a week so she gets a chance to interact with others?
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Reply to Frances73

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