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Feb 7, 2018 · Husband with early Alzheimers -question in Caregivers

I cared for my father with Alzheimer’s who complained of being anxious. He would rock back and forth in his chair. He’d say “I feel like I need to be doing something…” It was so hard and frustrating to him. His doctor would prescribe lorazepam (sleep) but what worked the best for him was vaping high CBC with small amounts of THC (medical marijuana). This did it — it was the solution to our problem! I got my father a medical marijuana card in Oregon. And hands down — after a few puffs, he would stop rocking and was able to relax. I do not recommend edibles or anything with high THC – because these give that head high. You do not want that with risk of falling and over eating. It must be high CBD and must contain tiny amounts of THC to make it active. This also helped with pain and headaches. It was a miracle drug for his anxiety and restlessness. He also enjoyed nature shows which helped calm him like Blue Planet series. I also made him Sleepy-time, Kava-Kava tea. This was one of the hardest jobs of my life caring for my dad with this disease but I was grateful to be the one to care for him. We had the best of times and the worst of times. My heart goes out to you for what you are doing. It is not easy… <3

Jan 18, 2018 · Mild Alz and working in Caregivers

Hello @clayton48 – I used to run an in home care agency and caregived for my father for two years. I can relate to your situation. I saw how helpless and withdrawn my Dad felt from his life as his disease progressed, when he could no longer do what he once loved. I have a few ideas to support you. Something that gave my Dad some meaning was to be around children. Perhaps getting involved in an elementary school’s reading program or a daycare center. I’m not certain about jobs to stimulate his brain but possibly volunteering in some capacity, giving back to others to create meaning. Perhaps the Human Society or a hospice. Connecting with children, via neighbors, school or with family always put a smi)e on my dad’s face. I have also caregived for another woman with dementia and I discovered she found meaning in painting large pieces of ceramics. She would spend so much time painting yellow/blonde hair on a cute ceramic piece that was of a young child holding two puppies. She would get lost in a meditative state while painting. Client ‘L’ and I gave this ceramic piece to her son for his birthday, which is something he now cherishes. A key component to get them engaged was to not ask if they wanted to paint or do an activity, I would just set it up in front of them and begin doing it alone. Then I’d just non-verbally hand her a paint brush – to join me. I also made sure the ceramic piece had large areas to paint, not small detailed ones. The activity brought such joy to her! Another thought, is connecting with small non-profits, to see if they need help with a bulk mailing or a type of repetitive job. We folded letters, sealed and stamped envelopes for a local non-profit. It’s something that can be done there or at home. Scrapbooking was also another joyful activity we shared together. There is a fabulous conversation game called My Gift of Grace / Hello. I purchased this game and wrote my Dad’s answers to the questions on the cards. After my dad passed, I gave the cards away to my family, just to remember the funny things he used to say. I certainly had to put my creative hat on to figure out ways to help people suffering from this horrifically, sad, and debilitating disease — to find meaning, as the disease dissolves who they once were. I AM honoring you and all the people who align with this disease and for all who read this post. It is not easy…. I AM sending you strength and some creative thoughts your way, PeacefulOne in Scottsdale, Az.