jmgoyder

wings and things

Love story 115 – Sedation

on November 9, 2012

Before I became a lecturer in literature and writing, I worked as a nurse in nursing homes and I used to be disturbed by the amount of sedation given to people with dementia. Now I understand much more clearly why.

This evening the nursing lodge staff rang me so that I could speak to Anthony and he was, once again, agitated, confused and mumbling conspiracy theories about what ‘they’ were doing to him. Again, he didn’t know where he was so I tried to reassure him, spoke to the evening nurse (I now call her ’24/7′) who was by his side, then to him again, then got off the phone stunned at the rapidity of his descent into dementia.

Earlier in the day I had rung the morning nurse to discuss the evening confusion problem and she said they were going to get a urine sample because Anthony might have a urinary tract infection. I had wondered this myself as I already knew that these kinds of infections can send someone who already has a brain disease into crazyland.

But tonight, after the jumbled conversation with Ants, I waited until I had calmed down a bit, then  I rang ’24/7′ back to have a private chat and she told me the urine test came back clear.

This means that Anthony does not have a urinary tract infection.

This means that we are now facing what I already knew was coming (but Anthony didn’t), the dementia of Stage 5 Parkinson’s Disease. It has been lurking there for some time but now its jaws are wide, its fangs are sharp and it is out to get him.

’24/7′ told me he had refused his dinner, had become belligerent and was difficult to calm down.

We need sedation.


23 responses to “Love story 115 – Sedation

  1. awful how we come to understand some things, isn’t it?

  2. Louise G. says:

    Oh Julie. It doesn’t seem fair. It doesn’t seem right and yet, it is what it is. This disease is horrendous and you and Anthony and Ming are living its reality and the fact that I am so sorry it is happening to you seems so ineffective.

    I want to do more. I want to do something to help lift your burden but there is so little I can do other than to say my thoughts and prayers are with you.

    Hugs

    • jmgoyder says:

      But like you say, Louise, it is what it is. I am fine, really – getting stronger every day to deal with what is coming. Thank you so much for your concern and generosity. Jx

  3. tersiaburger says:

    Thinking of you dear Cyber Friend!

  4. It just seems so unfair, doesn’t it?

  5. At least you’re going into this next terrifying stage with your eyes wide open. We feel for you all.

  6. Judith Post says:

    Sedation is a good thing–for him and you. Mom gets so afraid without it. It’s like someone frees her imagination and it can go to happy places….or bad ones, like living a nightmare. If a med can spare that, why not?

  7. TBM says:

    My grandmother suffered from dementia. Such an unforgiving disease. My thoughts are with you both. Please take care.

  8. terry1954 says:

    I am so sorry it has come to this my friend. it has to be very difficult

  9. I hope whatever is best for all you takes its course. Great to know you’re keeping good. And that Anthony has found a dedicated caretaker in 24/7.
    Much love,
    Ritika

  10. bulldogsturf says:

    Oh shame for him and you… Julie you seem to be very aware of what to expect as the disease continues to take more of Ant away from you.. and that I think is good… it is better to know and understand than not to know what to expect… kudos to you and hugs …

  11. The one thing that I would suggest to all of you is to have your loved one evaluated by a Geropsychiatric physician…This was the best thing we did for both our mothers and our health. He finely tuned her on Seroquel and Celexa and she is very content and easy to reason with. Prior to the medications she was hallucinating, paranoid and became very difficult to care for. Now we are dealing with my 96 year old father developing dementia. We may soon need to get him evaluated because the evenings are bringing out a side of him that we have never seen before…Take time for your self and accept any offers of help that are offered …. eventually things even out and life will get back to normal.

  12. Trisha says:

    Tears. I am so sad for you both.

  13. viveka says:

    Julie, as everyone else has said here – it’s not fair, but I think you have to be more relaxed about his behavior. You can’t do much about it and it’s not going to be any better – it’s going to get worst what I can understand. It’s easy for me to be BOLD with a crystal clear 90 year old mum. Julie, don’t worry about his confusion problem – take them as they come … Don’t make yourself sick because of worrying. My thoughts are there with you – wish there was a lot more I could do for you.

  14. It wasn’t till I watched a few documenties on dementia that I understood about the need to sedate the suffers because of their out bursts, so I understand that there is often a need to do so but it is such a shame that it happens. It truly is such a terrible condition

  15. robincoyle says:

    I recently learned about the urinary track/confusion connection. That the two go hand-in-hand seems odd to me.

    I’m glad you’ve come to terms with him needing sedation. It will make you both more comfortable.

  16. elizabeth says:

    This brought tears to me. I can’t imagine what it does to you Julie.

  17. victoriaaphotography says:

    Sedation in this situation is a kindness – I cannot imagine the terrors your dear Anthony is going through at this stage of the disease.
    Pressing the ‘like’ button seems so ineffectual, but I’m sure you know that we all ‘like’ to support you at this time, not ‘like’ what is happening in your lives.

  18. Sometimes it is easier once you know what you are facing. Now that you have understood the point of dementia that has been reached, you can make the appropriate adjustments. It will still be tough but you will be armed with the knowledge of his condition to guide you through.

    I feel for you. You are a strong caring person. My thoughts are with you.

  19. Fergiemoto says:

    Oh no…wide jaws and sharp fangs…I’m so sorry about these struggles.

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