My grandmother has just changed her pacemaker and the doctor said she should be lying down for at least 3-4 days. But she refuses and keeps getting up and moving her left arm which she was also told not to do. Do you have any advice on how to get her to lie down? And we have tried to sweet talk her to the bed but she refuses and keeps walking around. My grandmother has Dementia

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Well, it sounds like this doctor doesn’t understand dementia, that’s for sure! Does he or she have any suggestions or make any comments about this?

I would say: bring the entertainment to her. Find out WHY she’s getting up. Does she think she has chores? Does she want to go watch TV or visit with people? Maybe bring her something to do in bed, like a task. Bring her stuff to fold (clothes, socks) or even dishes and silverware to sort. She’ll feel productive but she will still be sitting or laying down.

She can probably do these things with minimal arm movement. I would also suggest putting that arm in a sling.

Inevitably, she’s going to get up. We just want to minimize the amount of times she does that.

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Rachael Wonderlin is an internationally-recognized dementia care expert and consultant. She has a Master’s in Gerontology and is the author of two published books with Johns Hopkins University Press. Rachael owns Dementia By Day, a dementia care consulting and education company.

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