Posted at 4 am
I need to make it clear that my rants about Maureen being prescribed trazodone are in no way a criticism of the individuals concerned. Last week the Specialist Doctor concluded what we already knew: Maureen’s dementia had progressed to severe. In the short time that she had at her disposal, she tried to do something that would calm the situation down and make Maureen’s presentation more manageable. What she didn’t have time to do was assess to what extent Maureen’s environment was making her presentation challenging.
Living on a Building Site is likely to drive anyone bananas. When our children neglect us we all feel aggrieved. If you had dementia into the bargain, your reaction to such dual forces of distress is likely to be magnified and played out publicly.
If you are a Specialist Doctor working predominantly for a Crisis Team you are generally fighting fires. Your brief is to pour water on situations to dampen the fires of distress. Medication is your medium and your prescription pad is always close at hand.
When your Care Partner has skills and substantial experience in behaviour management then it is a different ball game. If he also knows when to call in support then you always have a sporting chance of remaining in your own home without the need for medication that might calm you down but is likely to put you on the slippery path to dependency.
Update: I drafted the above before going to bed last night. Early this morning Maureen woke up and didn’t know where she was or who I was. She spent quite some time trying to smash her way out of the house. I called for help and received telephone assistance from the Konar Suite.
Any lone carer awoken in the early hours would have struggled with what I had to endure this morning. As my friend from the Konar Suite said you need a Plan B. It is fortunate that one of Maureen’s son had arranged to be here this morning. Unless family support is now forthcoming on a regular basis Maureen is likely to be encouraged to take the first step on a ladder that could result in her losing her independence. I fear that trazodone will be on the agenda once again this morning!
We are both locked in here against our will now. Maureen is reassured her son will be here soon to sort our incarceration out. Youtube is working its normal magic and the tea is flowing to ease the vocal chords. There is no need to give Maureen lorazepam as she is now as happily singing along to Rod Stewart. Where on earth was that man in my hour of need?
I hope to provide further updates as the day progresses