My grandma with dementia folds all day and night she's constantly folding up her blankets at night then freezes. What do I do?

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I understand that many people with dementia fold clothing, towels, blankets and basically anything else she can get her hands on. I try to ignore it mostly. Sometimes I even give her things to fold unless she gets agitated which sometimes happens. My concern is at night. I'm putting her to bed and covering her with blankets. When I watch in the monitor or even before she falls asleep and I'm sitting with her, she's constantly folding up her blankets then being freezing. I can't afford to turn up the heat really high at night as it costs a lot of money first off (I'm not working since I'm caring for her and in the state of Maine I am only allotted 3 hours a day of care not long enough to even get to a job much less work) and second off I'd roast. Sometimes she'll even start to fold up her clothing on her completely leaving herself open to the cold air. She has a cold which I think is from that. Anyone have any suggestions on how to keep her warm and yet not have it cost a ton of money. I've thought about placing a heater next to her bed but I'm worried she might mess with it when I'm sleeping or place a blanket on it and have it catch on fire.

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You could try one of those Sensory fidget lap mats, that have things like working buttons, zippers, beads on a string, photos encased in plastic, strings to tie, and other like hand engaging items. I know that they sell a huge varieton Etsy, arounf the 30 dollar mark, or you could have a friend make one for you. If it were something she could get enjoyment from during the day, perhaps it would become like a security blanket at nighttime for her, also a dolly, some dementia patients love the security of a doll or othe stuffed animal. You could also try one of those electric blanket type pads, that go under the sheets, keep it on the lowest setting, and the controls out of sight and reach.
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littlemisskitty, it sounds like you have a good handle on this, and now you have a few suggestions for other things to try if something else is needed.

Many people need darkness to fall asleep (I use a sleep mask) so that was a great discovery that perhaps other caregivers can learn from.

I am concerned with the interruptions to your own sleep. Of course young parents get up with babies every 3 hours or more often, but they are pretty groggy during that period and they can look forward to the time when they can once again sleep through the night. Does someone else help during the day? Do you get down time? Being sleep deprived for long stretches of time is really not healthy for you, and you need all the health you can get!
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You might make a duvet out of fleece or flannel and insert a heavy or 2 medium blankets in it. It'll be heavier and awkward and hard to fold.

You might also ask her doctor(s) if Melatonin would affect any of her meds. It's a natural sleeping pill w/o side effects such as the PM meds or heavy duty ones like Ambien.
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Thank goodness she sleeps. In fact what I started to do was sit in the dark with her for a bit and she settles right down. Then I go around turning on her nightlights for her and the bathroom light. That seems to help. She sleeps during the night waking up periodically to have me take her to the bathroom. Lately it's been every 3 or so hours then I resettle her back down. I guess she needed darkness to relax, who knew especially since my mom always had her place all lit up thinking it helped with her sundown. I have found getting her dressed early (around 7) after taking her nighttime pills around that time helps with ending the sundown at that time making it a more peaceful nighttime routine. She's usually out by 9:30 or 10 at the latest and sleeps until 5 or 5:30 am with a bathroom break around 12:30 and again around 3ish. She's also battling a bladder infection she has had for about a month now so I'm not sure what is side effects to that, the antibiotics or really her. It's so hard to tell that kind of thing :(
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Is she going to sleep or staying up to fold? I might ask her doctor about something light to help relax her at night. Plus, the other suggestions above sound very good.
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Many people develop these kinds of behaviors. it used to be when we used wool blankets people would practise this repetitive behavior and pick the fur balls off the blankets. don't know what you can do about it except as has been suggested.
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I think the zip up the back fleece style one piece pj sounds fantastic and could at least help with keeping her warm while she sets about her business of folding everything in sight! You might also consider getting hold of a large pile of towels, rags, diapers...volumes on cloth in a box or basket that you could place with her so that she has those to work on instead of her blankets and clothing. Don't make a big deal out of it, rather just place the basket in with her so she may find it for herself and get to folding :) This tactic has worked for my MIL, although she does not strip herself of her clothing to fold, she does strip her bed from time to time...
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Make sure the garment she sleeps in will keep her warm even if the blankets get folded off her.

Could she have something else to fold while she is falling asleep? Washclothes are a good size for this purpose.
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Please avoid heaters and electric blankets for her. She will not know how to safely operate them. Get her a fleece one piece pajama that zips up the back. Fleece will offer her sensory stimulation and warmth. If she turned the heat down at night when she was on her own, continue to do that; it may help her sleep.
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Does your Grandmother get up at night to use the bathroom on her own? If she doesn't try thermal underwear, the heavy stuff isn't very easy to get on and off.

I also think there are one piece flannel outfits that zip down the back, which make it difficult for an elder to remove.
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