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Mom has dementia and I am noticing that she is blending television stories with life, sometimes making her very anxious. Is this a common experience? Also, I have tried to minimize impact by blocking channels and putting a limit on the rating allowed. She has quite a bit of trouble operating the remote and the pop ups from blocking and restricting channels makes her frustrated. How do you control television while minimizing frustration for our loved ones?

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Yes, this is very common. When my mom entered that stage, I only showed her movies. Mostly old musicals... Oklahoma, Seven Brides for Seven Brothers...she also liked game shows. Just make sure nothing scary.
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If you get cable tv, and get Animal Planet, let her watch the puppies and kittens shows. They're adorable - little fur balls romping and rolling around. They're so light hearted that I think they'd be very good entertainment for anyone.

The "Puppy Bowl", a puppy imitation of the Super Bowl, is especially amusing - little puppies romping around, stepping in the water bowl...it's really cute.
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Oh, depending on how progressed she may be, I saw a nice Yule Time DVD that I almost purchased for the MC unit that my LO is located. In fact, I think I will get it. It has a varity of winter scenes, snow fall, deer, roaring fireplace, Christmas tree, etc. and plays Christmas music. I thought it sounded great and may get one for myself too.

I like the Animal Planet idea too. I especially like the Vet shows.
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TV today, even on non-cable channels is the pits. Gone are the good shows like "Carol Burnett", "Andy Williams", "Lawrence Welk", and fun comedies like "I Love Lucy".

And TV remotes keep getting more complicated. Life was so much easier when the TV had a dial and you would turn the dial to the TV show. Funny, we always found something to watch with just having 3 channels :)

I don't know if there is some way you can lock the remote onto a few really good channels, like Turner Classic Movies, and those channels that offer softer shows such as "Andy Griffith", "My Three Sons", "Love Boat", "What's My Line", etc.
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We ordered some DVD’s off the Alzheimer’s Store website. One was kitties and one was nature scenes.. it was very calming.
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For awhile my LO would get angry with some people on tv, because she didn't like what they said, what they wore, how they talked, etc. But, that was replaced before too long with a disinterest in tv altogether, as she was not able to follow what was going on. It just confused her and her formerly favorite pasttime, was no more. We would keep in on just to add interest, but, she mainly ignored it.

If the shows were making her anxious, I would try to avoid them. You could always say the cable company is cutting out a lot of channels now days. Which is true. Just program the programs that don't bother her. Is this her only issue? Because, sometimes, just about anything can cause anxiety or agitation.
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humor, I wish I knew a better way, you have a better setup already than I could figure out! Maybe instead of any live broadcast, set up a DVR (is that already an outdated term? lol) with a number of browsable items that you have preloaded, and that menu is her ‘TV guide.’  If she likely to forget she’s seen the shows or movies, and watch them again.  You could cycle a few in and out periodically.  
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Sunnygirl, do you remember the name or title of that DVD? I think my father might enjoy it.
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TV and dementia? Absolutely! I don't think it's so much mixing the two, it may seem that way, at least with my mom. look for game show channel, and decades channel if you have it, though i believe that's a local channel in the northwest, don't know if anybody else has it. they show old shows from the 50's and 60's and 70's, binge weekends, but the important thing is recording onto your dvr lots of episodes of shows and movies she likes. of course movies can then be bought on dvd and erased once you know what she wants. mom likes singing and dancing, lucy (either series, it's just lucy), golden girls, gilmore girls. movies are momma mia, burlesque, heidi... depends on what your mom's taste is, what the characters sentimentally mean to her. who's a favorite actor or actress, kids or not kids. watch her reactions, mom throws kisses to people on tv depending on character or person (like lucy). she used to love action pictures, she doesn't anymore, too much violence that scares her, so you can't go by what they used to like. sometimes she cries because she likes it, she's in the movie or relating to it, she does both. game shows used to make her think she was supposed to be winning something. if she likes it, you'll come to hate singin in the rain! :-))
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My mom sometimes will fall asleep I think for cat nap. When she comes to, she thinks she was with the people in the t.v. show. This happens quite often around here. She has watched Titanic and told us we all went on a cruise. Sometimes she just somehow incorporates the story into her living room with her. She is in the middle stages of dementia now. Happens all the time. Like all said above, puppies and Mayberry are better. Who would not Love Aunt B? P.S. My mom's t.v. has the weather channel symbol burned into the screen. You can see it in any channel lol!
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