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Mom has started really fretting over what day of the week it is. She calls almost everyday asking if its Sunday and do we need to go to Mass. It started a few months ago only occasionally now its almost every day. In fact after we went to church yesterday she called that evening asking if it was Sunday. Anyway I've ordered a day of the week clock from a company called dayclox (good reviews). Has anyone experienced this? Any suggestions to help keep her oriented to the day? I have a chalk board by her phone where we write what day it is but she doesn't recall to check there. This seems to really upset her that she can't remember the day and then she feels bad about calling us. I know this is part of the progression of the loss but just want to help her anxiety if I can.

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Hi. I purchased a dementia clock from Amazon for my mom. It is actually a digital picture frame programmed with the 3 times of day. "It is Friday morning......, etc"
Minus having to replace the electrical cord that came with it very shortly with one from Radio Shack, it works great. (Now we just keep it plugged in all the time and shut it off at the button at night.) Mom really likes it and I asked the aide and she says she no longer bothers her with constant questions as to what day it is. I also purchased a very large clock for the den where she spends most time. I also purchased her a large monthly planner where she writes things down, appts, etc. I also purchased a large print wall calendar. She gets very nervous about doc appts, etc. It finally dawned on me to just tell the aide all the future dates for doc appts so she does not get so nerveous about missing them. Then as they get closer she can write them in her planner book. Otherwise our conversations revolve around constant repeating the same info.............Then I start pulling my hair out!
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I have to be honest, I have tried everything and nothing works long term. You can put up boards or calendars and they will never look there. I leave notes on bright colored paper all over and Mom will ask anyway.... she gets mad and does not want to read the note or says the note hangs up there all the time so the information is wrong.... there is ALWAYS and excuse! Just smile and answer the question....as time goes on she may call you 10 times a day to ask the same question. I tell my Mom about 50 times a day that the dog has been fed and yes it is frustrating!
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I bought the Moshi clock for my husband big numbers & date, all you have to do is touch it or say Hi Moshi & she'll tell you the date & time he never could figure it out! So the only one it does help is me, newspapers used to help but not anymore. I use the larger dry erase boards one in bathroom & one in kitchen only putting the days date day year & what we may be doing that day, this does work for us, also calendars do not
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When I started making my dad oatmeal for breakfast to help him gain weight; I noticed his anxiety over what day of the week ended. I put the oatmeal in a ziplock bag which I write in black marker what day of the week it is for. I did it at first for my own benefit as I had to make a weeks worth at once. When I asked him if he wanted me to stop putting the day of the week on the bags, he said no. He said he liked to see my handwriting. My brother who lives with him says that even when he forgets to heat it up and eats it out of the bag; he does use the right day if the week. I don't use milk to make it and dad keeps it refrigerated. I saw him this past Sunday putting the bags on top of each other in order in his mini fridge. He knows that he's forgetting and uses my oatmeal to tell what day if the week it is. I think he eats it because I take time to make it. Whatever you end up doing remember that usually some part of your family member knows what's happening. Dad can't remember if he found the cat ten minutes ago, but he manages as best he can. I think it's worse because he watched his mother slowly disappear from Alzheimer's disease and now he has it. God be with us all.
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All of these ideas are great, but my mom must be further along this road than many here. She is not able to use the phone any longer, and definitely not a computer or cell phone. One of our first signs of the disease was she couldn't remember how to turn on the computer. She does not know how to turn on the t.v. I thought about a day-at-a-time calendar, but she would keep taking pages off because she wouldn't remember she just had. But, I think this sort of calendar would be wonderful for many of you.
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I believe there are phone apps that send visual and auditory reminders to folks with the date and time and events on their calendar for the day.
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As long as she isn't upset about not knowing what day it is, there is no problem. There is only a problem when the person is anxious about not knowing and asks about the day of the week over and over because it makes them upset not to know As I said in my post, my husband's digital watch helps because all I have to say is "look at your watch" and he is content because the day of the week is right there..
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My mother is certainly unaware of what day it is but does not fret about it. We are grateful if she knows what year it is.
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Another option may be a talking clock that are available and mostly used by blind folks. Wondering if there is a phone service that calls and says "Good morning. Today is....... How about an automated message service that would call. If the family/caregive enters appointment information then it could say. "Good morning today is Sunday. Your daughter....will be picking you up for Mass at 9 am. Have a blessed day." Good morning today is Monday. You have a doctor's appointment at 10 am with Dr. Hogan. The elder bus will pick you up at 9 am and bring you home after appointment. Have a healthy day."
I know this would help my husband and I who live 2 1/2 hours from his mother who lives along and cannot keep calendars and notes straight. I am not sure she would remember the message but if it came as a message she could replay. Or some simple way to repeat. Or if you have a questions call your daughter, son, Anyone hear about someone developing a program like this.
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Can she put on the news on the tv and get the day, date and time?
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My husband wears an inexpensive digital watch which gives him the day of the week, the date and the time. He remembers to look at his watch sometimes but often asks me because he doesn't remember to look at it. When he asks me what day it is, as he does often, I just tell him to look at his watch which works for both of us..
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My mother does the same thing and even calls her caregiver on her day off. I have left reminders but it looks like I need to get more. It is especially important for meds.
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I think this is very common and for awhile keeping a calendar kept her somewhat oriented to time. But, then, she now forgets that the reminder is there. She will ask what time and day it is even though there are many cues around the house, including the daily newspaper. After awhile, they just don't think to look for these reminders that have been constant throughout their lives.
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Here is something we did -- I purchaed a large numbered calendar (if you can't find one make one!) and I tear off just the current month. I taped it to the refrigerator (or you can tape it to the table) -- someplace that she has to see everyday at eye level. I make sure the when the current day is done a strike through is put on that date. On the Sundays, I purchased "cross" stickers from Target, put them on the calendar and put a red circle around them. EVERYDAY, I say when we get to the cross it's time for church. She loves getting her clothes ready (really one of us does it) Saturday night. She gets up for her "coffe" early enough to see the calendar and know she has to go back to her room to get "ready". Of course, she forgets we even got any clothes ready, but she does not go alone to get dressed. I have discovered that if you do things as if you were teaching a toddler, they will often react the same way. You let them do whatever they can do themselves -- don't take it all away, and then you teach them other things over again. The repetition is helpful depending on what stage their condition is. If we break routine, we are near disaster and damage control is exhausting, but when we can get through a perfectly routine week, the moments of lucidity are priceless. I hope this helped spark an idea that will work for your mom.
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It may not be the day of the week that's upsetting her, it may be the panic elderly catholics feel when they think they may be in danger of missing Mass. I work with a senior community and it's not uncommon for residents with dementia show up at the reception desk dressed to go to Mass at 2 AM on a weekday. Honestly, I think it's some kind of phenomenon.

Instead of getting into a discussion about what day it is, it may help to focus on assuring her that she went to Mass on Sunday and doesn't go again for X days. Really, it may be 'Mass Anxiety' that's the culprit!
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The Alzheimer's assoc has some GREAT big virtual calenders I think they can be helpful... My Mother very often gets confused about what day it is especially if she doesn't go to church...
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I purchased a clock. It is digital, it tells the time, month/date, day of the week, and indoor temperature. I purchased for my mother-in-law and liked it so much I bought one for me. It is a La Crosse Technology - Atomic Digital Wall Clock. It is large and easy to read.
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Oh yes! We go thru the exact same thing. Am interested in suggestions as well, since the dayclox (that we have all over the house) no longer seem to work.
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