My Mom suffers from general anxiety disorder. Any advice? - AgingCare.com

My Mom suffers from general anxiety disorder. Any advice?

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Here I am again, this time in control, but needing suggestions. She also has low vision(macular degeneration). I have noticed that her anxiety elevates when she is bored. I am asking for suggestions to fill her time. She can't read anymore because of her vision, which eliminates puzzles, etc. I have tried getting her books on tape but I'm not sure she understands how to turn them on. I'm thinking perhaps, if I turn them on for her, she will content herself, while I get some work done or have some ME time. I'm going to try that, but I was hoping maybe someone would have some other suggestions as well.

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Do you have any pets in the house? Would bringing one in take her interest. An older pet something soft to sit on her lap and stroke or groom. Even a rabbit or guinea pig would help. Nothing big unless it's abig old soft Lab or similar but that would make more work for you.
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My Mom, who is 96, also has macular degeneration, so now she can only see from around the outer circle of her eyes [it would be like putting a big grey sticky dot on your eyeball, and trying to see around it].... oh how she loved her autobiographical books. When she tries to read, she uses a small handheld flashlight, regular size print is easier than large print, but it gets very tiring for her.

Mom still enjoys football, even though trying to watch it isn't that easy, she knows all the major league quarterbacks and the coaches. And yes, she enjoys music.

Mom she still likes to run the vacuum [forget dusting]... cooking is now limited to precook dinners, fresh fruits, store bought pies, pastries..... she helps Dad rake leaves.

My Mom won't socialize because of her eyesight and poor hearing :( Too bad, as Dad would enjoy getting out and meeting new people, but he won't go without her. Going for rides doesn't work well, as Mom can't see where we are going.

Not that long ago Mom would go with me to Target to give her a sense of being helpful, but the store tends to rearrange the items on the shelves... example, Mom would be in the right aisle and the right location to find Jello, but she would be reaching for it but it's no longer there... [sigh].... it's now elsewhere in the store.... it became so frustrating for her as she wanted to still be independent when it came to shopping.
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Google library of congress books for the blind. I understand they loan out at no cost a very simple-to-use audio player and can provide not only books but current magazines, etc. Don't give up on the books-on-tape idea, but research devices that are intended specifically for the blind.
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Listen to music or the radio? All-music stations...talk radio. Maybe some old radio show drama . . . music from her era? Bob Newhart or Bill Cosby comedy CDs? Listening to television? Magazines on audio? Would large print versions and a bright light help let her read some?

Let her help with dinner...maybe whip potatoes...peel hard-boiled eggs for egg salad...pit cherries...peel carrots or potatoes...knitting...crocheting...once a week at the senior center for socializing...

Bring all your knick-knacks to the kitchen sink, set mom by the table, You wash, she dries. You match socks, let her roll them up. Mom's our 'plastic bag roller-upper' - maybe that. Lord knows we have plenty of those! Let her open the mail and stack it.

Google the internet to see if your area has a center for the blind or any kind of group nearby. Call them for ideas.

ANYTHING you're doing...think, "How could mom do this?" It makes no difference if she's slow...if it keeps her occupied, it's served its purpose. Even if you have to clean up afterwards.

Good luck!!!!! All of us want to occupy our time. "Mom, can you help me with this?" may be music to her little ears. ;)

(My knick-knacks have never been cleaner. Ha!)
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Music from her era. In her 80's she would like Big Band/Frank Sinatra or Michael Buble. In her 70's Rock and Roll (think Elvis) and in her 60's, Beatles, Rolling Stones, James Taylor etc. Mom is 87 and we got the DVD's for Rodgers and Hammerstein musicals. She can't see them all that well, but she loves the music.
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