What if a person with dementia has no hobbies and doesn't want any?

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My Mom and I go for a walk every morning and the rest of the day she does nothing. Made a veggie garden and she was happy and then said I can't help bending is bad for the spine. It seems like all the years living alone and doing nothing has left her with no manners or the will to participate in anything out of her chair. How do I get her more motivated to do anything including bathing. I feel like I am her personal maid.

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My Mom is like this too. She insists she IS busy and has enough to do but really she's doing nothing. Not even TV or her puzzles she HAD to have. I called her doctor and discussed her behavior and he agreed that it is dementia. She never was much if a social person so for 6 years I have suggested she go to a senior center and was told a firm NO! She has enough friends. ( she has none and her other kids don't bother with her) I told doctor about this and how I needed a break. He walked in and asked her a few questions then " prescribed " 2-3 visits a week to senior center to get her moving. She is more willing now that its doctors orders!
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A person with dementia who has had no hobbies and doesn't want any is probably in about the same boat as a similar person without dementia. We all need things to hold our interest.

The walk is great. Good for you!

An adult day care health program ("day care") may be a partial solution. At least it would be a change of scenery, a chance to interact with other adults, and exposure to some activities. It gives you a break, too.

Could she cut out and/or sort grocery coupons? Fold some kinds of laundry? Have some chores expected of her?

How is her handwriting? Could she be given a stack of old photos and a soft photo-labeling pencil and write names on the backs of the pictures?

My mother liked outings to a plant nursery. Colorful, fragrant, wide aisles, and she could pick out a houseplant to bring home.

My husband loved visiting the local science museum, geared for children but not in a condescending way.
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my mother and aunt might have had interests when they were younger but not so much in old age. i just make ( made ) good meals for them and discuss it well in advance to give em something to anticipate. making edna some 15 bean soup right now. she already knows i have pineapple for sweet rice and fruit later.
simple pleasures..
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Mom spent her whole life caring for us no time in her mind for friends she did like to crochet but now brain will not tell hands what to do she also liked ceramics. Senior center no way she is not old LOL so I said I will go with you it will be fun. I am not 55 yet! Back home if you were a care giver you could go well I went to sign us up and I was told NO you can drop her off! Let's see she is a fall risk will get scared they did not care they said there seniors are very protective of the senior environment! What snobs! So think YMCA but can not put charge in pool area mom and water no way! So we sit home her old and getting older and me not so much and getting older! I AM NOT COMPLAINING ABOUT CARING FOR MOM but I was amazed that the senior center was so unaccomidating! We tried a home care giver so I could get out but that never goes well . All this being said we need to reinvent the system a bit a center where we can take our elders for crafts exercise and such that has a room where we can leave them for shot times say to change to swim or even leave the just for 30 min at a time. Kinda like a YMCA but with a room with trained elder care! Like a mommies and me program for moms and babies like liberty time for toddlers were they do not have to be so very quiet! Oh gosh if I had money or a grant I would so start this! We do not all choose to put our elders in a home!
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I am 60 and I can tell you that no one will ever, ever get me to go to a senior center or to play games. I don't feel well enough to get dressed and be somewhere every day and I'm sure that will get worse as I get older. But I have interests: I read, and do the internet, Facebook, keep up with current news, walk my dog, and so I am never bored. I hope no one is forcing their mom to go to a senior center if she doesn't want to go! I'd be on her side! You just need to find out what interests she has that lie beneath....and believe me, they are there somewhere but maybe depression is getting in the way. Best wishes.
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Prier to the dementia my mom had plenty of things that kept her busy, she was a designer and build restaurants, hotels etc...and she did all sorts of creative things, making jewelry, painting, loved gardening etc on her down time.

Just prier to her getting the Alzheimer's she had instructed myself and my brother that if she ever got to a point where she needed to be cared for to put her in a nursing home so she could hang out with the other old ladies and have a great time.

Today however she is terrified of the idea thinking it is absolutely horrible and has no desire what so ever to be creative. The only things that capture her attention are when we go out for drives, shopping (only for a minute then she is bored and wonders) and watching Eureka on Netflix (we have watched all 9 seasons at least a dozen times over the year).

She gets angry when we mention a seniors day program...she just does not relate to playing bingo and such.

Mom is totally not motivated to do anything, like bathing, but I insist and if she is being particularly stubborn tell her that she can't go out with us if she does not...then she huffs off to take the bath I've already made for her.

My mom's personality does not lend to kind reminders, hints or redirection, so I have to be firm and demanding with her, which is not my personality so much but you do what works.

The Neurologist said that you can't force them to get involved with anything, or even want to do anything...just every once in a while offer something different to do...with the Alzheimer's they may forget they don't like to do things and find an interest in things they once didn't want to do...so it's possible...but I've not found it to be so yet.

The regular doc who we have only seen once really tried to convince my mom to go to a day program and it really adjetated her and I told the Dr that mom just isn't interested for several reasons, and she (Dr) got kinda upset with me and insisted we get her involved in art projects etc. LOL...I'm an artist and so is my eldest daughter and my other two kids do art projects all the time at home. We have oil paints, acrylic paints, water colors, crayons of every type...colored paper, paper with designs ... basically we are set up.

She said...well maybe if you'd offer...of course my mom said she had never been offered ... well she does not remember...but I told the doc we offer all the time.

My point is this...the Neurologist said that it's a shame but most Dr's don't understand when some people just don't fall into the regular category and he said just ignore them and keep on doing what we are and stop feeling guilty about it.

Sorry I'm a little long winded. :) Hope it helps though.
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First thing that came to my mind was "you're toast". SORRY! They get stuck in their ways, but it doesn't mean they cannot learn something else... my former employer told me before I went on this adventure to "remember how we teach the 4 year olds" they have to have a schedule... it needs to somewhat stay concise or else...poof...toast again.
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My mom is like this too. She never had any hobbies or crafts, never was much into cooking either. The only thing she does (and loves) is bingo. I don't know what it is about bingo and the elderly, but it's a huge draw. I agree about adult day care. It will give you a break and let your mom engage with other people her own age... surely they will have bingo too ; )
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I had my 94 yr old mom's brain-mapping done and the Theta brain wave was high in comparison, which left her with sleeping too much and low motivation. I always have to help her with puzzles, when she gets stuck I make it like a games where I show and/or tell her which piece belongs where then she can fit it in. Just fiinding a way to help keep her going strengthens the old memory patterns.
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I am 67 and my Mom is 91. I've been trying to get her to go to a senior center but all they do is play BINGO and make silly crafts that are childish and ugly. She will not go back and I can't say that I blame her (she hates Bingo). She is a news junkie and watches CNN all the time. No wonder she gets depressed! She needs to be with other people her age(so do I!) but there aren't too many 91 year olds around. I wish there was a way to spark an interest in Something....everything I suggest get a no. I've decided to sign up for a few classes for myself and continue to substitute teach just to get out of the house/news channel/boredom-cycle! She is fine on her own for a couple of hours at a time. We have now lived together for 3 months and I can see burnout on the horizon if I don't make some changes. She doesn't seem to want her life anymore and I miss mine so much. I thought caring for my mom would be uplifting and gratifying.....depressing and frustrating is what I'm seeing lately. The harder I try to problem solve ,the more she complains and finds fault. I will never do this to my son or daughter! Thanks for letting me "VENT"!!!
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