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What to buy DMIL who has Vascular Dementia?

(15 Posts)
JiltedJohnsJulie Sat 21-Nov-20 19:40:57

She was diagnosed when she lost her sense of taste and smell so although she's losing weight, a separate issue that we are trying to help with, food Ito smellies aren't ideal.

She's in a home now and is active but quite advanced, 5.5 years post diagnosis (life expectancy after diagnosis is 5 years).

Just after some advice on what to buy her?

OP’s posts: |
SylvanianFrenemies Sat 21-Nov-20 19:44:08

How aware and engaged is she? Things that come to mind are handcream, a twiddle muff, a cuddly toy or doll.Has she done any crafts in the past?

Elouera Sat 21-Nov-20 19:51:38

Do you know what music she used to be into? A CD of say 1940's music, or big band, wartime hits etc can help bring back memories.

Classic movie or TV shows- my nan used to love 'On the Buses', 'Are you being served' and 'Fawlty Towers'

Photo album or framed photos from younger days

Slippers or shoes with velco which are easy to put on

Something tactile like a fluffy blanket

Ahwig Sat 21-Nov-20 19:53:07

My mother had both vascular dementia and Alzheimer’s and was in a care home too. We bought a gorgeous fluffy blanket which she loved. It went on her bed but if she was downstairs with the other residents she had it cozily wrapped round her there too. She passed away January 2019 and I had it wrapping her up in the coffin. I know that sounds nuts but I wanted to think she was cozy

wonderstuff Sat 21-Nov-20 19:56:07

@Ahwig that sounds so lovely. Mil has alzheimer's and I think we'll look at a fluffy blanket for her.

JiltedJohnsJulie Sat 21-Nov-20 19:56:49

* Do you know what music she used to be into? A CD of say 1940's music, or big band, wartime hits etc can help bring back memories.

Classic movie or TV shows- my nan used to love 'On the Buses', 'Are you being served' and 'Fawlty Towers'

Photo album or framed photos from younger days

Slippers or shoes with velco which are easy to put on

Something tactile like a fluffy blanket*

Slippers or a throw for her bed could work and music too. She's always been a very busy person so not watched much telly and music might work but she's a bit young for wartime. Think we've already done enough photos recently too smile

OP’s posts: |
JiltedJohnsJulie Sat 21-Nov-20 19:58:54

ahwig that doesn't sound daft at all and I can completely understand it. My DF lost her Father recently and sent him off with his pipe in his pocket as she knows that it always game him comfort knowing it was there smile

OP’s posts: |
JiltedJohnsJulie Sat 21-Nov-20 20:00:55

Forgot to mention that she's always loved things like painting and knitting but had very limited concentration now although the activities co-ordinator seems very good with her smile

OP’s posts: |
CoffeeRunner Sat 21-Nov-20 20:06:01

Does she have a memory book? If not they are easy to make & so effective. I have worked with dementia patients for years & love these books. It’s also an excellent reminder for some of the staff who are unable to see beyond the confused old lady with possibly challenging behaviour in front of them. Never hurts to remind them that mum was just like them once upon a time! (This shouldn’t be necessary I know, but I speak from experience).

Other things are warm, stretchy, nightdresses, trousers & jumpers. Nothing with complicated fasteners or buttons. A doll or teddy can often help. I understand why you are staying away from smelliest, but (again from experience) some care homes simply do not provide shower gel or bubble bath. Therefore I would still suggest giving something in that line too.

CMOTDibbler Sat 21-Nov-20 20:08:44

Its so hard to find things that worked. Over the last few years of my mums life things she liked : purring cat toy (her favourite, she'd actively move it to her lap to stroke it) and a 'press the button for music' book of the Nutcracker (the sort toddlers have).
I bought her a simple music player which she wouldn't engage with at all apart from slamming it shut, a heated throw which I think confused her, and a doll that got chucked across the room.
Some years ago she liked a photobook of the family with very simple text underneath which the carers could share with her, but once she didn't recognise people, photos just distressed her

thatwouldbeanecumenicalmatter Sat 21-Nov-20 20:19:02

Ahwig that's lovely smile

My Nana when her hands weren't too bad used to enjoy brushing a dolls hair with a paddle brush, it was Annabel sized not Barbie. Sometimes she enjoyed brushing one of her furry blankets if that was on her legs that day.

Gemma2019 Sun 22-Nov-20 02:26:13

I bought my FIL this clock, as he often lost track of the actual day and time, and looking at a calendar didn't help. He said it was one of the most useful things he had been bought.

ArtyFartyQueen Sun 22-Nov-20 05:33:35

We brought my father a collage photo fleece blanket which he loved and so did all the staff as it was a nice talking point. We also got him an echo dot and an audible and Spotify subscription and the carers would help him put Mosul, the radio or a story on

Howcanwehelp Sun 22-Nov-20 05:39:58

My nan has this and also lost her ability to taste, she lost so much weight. We bought her soft jumpers in her new size as everything was hanging off her and looking smart was important. Also body lotion as her poor legs were sore and dry and then when we saw her we would rub in in and make her comfortable. It's very hard and she became a different person in the end.

Longdistance Sun 22-Nov-20 05:48:08

My df was bed bound in the latter years of his VD, so he really appreciated warm wool socks and a blanket.

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