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Constantly Walking
Posted: Friday, October 22, 2021 6:21 PM
Joined: 5/22/2021
Posts: 3

I do not think I am alone in this but I would like to know if there are many others out there that are living with a spouse that just constantly walks outside.  My wife is walking over 20,000 steps a day and she peaked at 45,000 steps several weeks ago and ultimately ended up in the hospital as the result of her body breaking down.  Once in the hospital her meds were changed and now it is better but I still worry about all the walking.  She will not stop no matter what.  The only way to get her to stop is if I get her in the car and we go driving.  She is not interested in anything that she used to do for hobbies so I am stuck worrying all the time.
Posted: Friday, October 22, 2021 8:17 PM
Joined: 3/14/2018
Posts: 392


My MIL paces all day. She’s not close to your DW’s step count though. She does take short naps. Her attention span is exactly 2 seconds. She constantly feels the need to transition to a new activity. Stand up. Sit down. It’s a challenge to keep her sitting on the toilet long enough to change her pants. She is so restless in the evenings she barely eats. I’m afraid of what will happen when she stops walking. I have no solutions. I do have sympathy.

Posted: Saturday, October 23, 2021 7:04 AM
Joined: 9/5/2017
Posts: 925

I know how exhausting it is when a spouse is highly active.  

My husband walked a lot in the earlier stages of AD and paced a lot.  He had more energy than I did and didn't sit or sleep much.  He's been in the severe stage for a year and has slowed down tremendously. Now he stays in bed much, much  longer (sleeping or awake) and sits a lot during his waking hours.  It's extremely difficult to get him out of the house.  

The advantages of his slowing down is I get more sleep and take better care of myself,  he doesn't wander around the house, and I can get a lot done around the house.  Disadvantages are he's 100% incontinent, doesn't like to go for rides, and has become a little unsteady on his feet.

It is one tough journey and you're not alone.

Posted: Saturday, October 23, 2021 3:49 PM
Joined: 5/22/2021
Posts: 3

Thank you for the responses. The problem I have is she will not stop walking and no matter what I say to her.  She is only 67 years old and has an amazing stamina to keep walking. I feel tired just watching her walk constantly.  I used to be very active myself but now I have to focus on keeping an eye on where she’s at just to make sure there’s not any problems.  The doctors have tried different types of medication but so far none of them have really taken away that anxiety or adrenaline to walk.  She never wants to take a nap either.
Gig Harbor
Posted: Saturday, October 23, 2021 7:12 PM
Joined: 3/10/2016
Posts: 776

I thought my husband was bad with his 3-6 mile walks but your wife is much worse. Years ago my friend’s wife was like that. He ended up placing her because she would escape from the house. She would walk up to 15 hours a day around and around the halls. Finally it stopped fairly suddenly and her walking days were over. She was actually happy because she was not told to stop and he was able to decrease his level of stress. Sometimes placement is a good thing for both parties.
Posted: Saturday, October 23, 2021 8:03 PM
Joined: 7/17/2020
Posts: 183

My wife is the same age. She spends her days walking around the house removing things from where they belong and putting them where they don’t. At least once a day I go through the house putting things back in their places. Somedays she will spend a lot of time outside but we have a fenced in yard with locked gates so that she can’t leave. There are not a lot of things that she can do on her own anymore but constantly moving around the house is one of them. Although it’s an irritant for me it gives her something to do. The exercise is also good for her.

Posted: Sunday, October 24, 2021 5:51 AM
Joined: 8/10/2016
Posts: 3262

My grandmother paced for many years.
Posted: Sunday, October 24, 2021 8:22 AM
Joined: 6/23/2021
Posts: 277

I suspect your LO may be suffering from akithesia---an extrapyramidal movement disorder caused by anti-psychotics and/or anti depressants, and/or poor compliance. This disorder is not readily recognized even on psychiatric units.

I would seek out the doctor is charge for consult. My DH spent 9 days in ICU and another week on a rehab floor due to this very disorder; having to be "washed out"--after discharge he came home more calm and normal. 

Good luck. I hope it resolves--this is a most distressing both for the impaired LO as well as the caregiver.

Posted: Sunday, October 24, 2021 2:34 PM
Joined: 5/22/2021
Posts: 3

You are correct about your diagnosis. That is exactly what the psychiatrist thought she might have. She is now taking gabapentin to help with her restlessness but it doesn’t really seem to be helping.
Posted: Thursday, October 28, 2021 3:09 PM
Joined: 6/13/2020
Posts: 415

My partner is also always pacing. This morning he hiked 3 hours with a paid caregiver. I was hoping the afternoon would be quiet (I was teleworking). No ! He spent the whole afternoon pacing. After diner, we were searching something on the internet with my son, he was pacing in the room, we stopped it was too stressing. Sometimes upstairs l sometimes downstairs.  

Sometimes when I am too tired I ask him to stop. I upsets him. He goes to his room…. But unfortunately he comes back 5 minutes later and continues walking. I also tried to put obstacles ( a chair in the middle of the open door) in his way so that he won’t come pacing just where I am, but then he paces round in a room

I never thought it could be due to the antidepressant. Do you think so ? He only takes donepezil and antidepressants.

Posted: Thursday, October 28, 2021 7:14 PM
Joined: 11/19/2020
Posts: 197

My DH paces and paces all day long.  I put a fitbit on him and he often had 15,000-20,000 steps a day.  It drives me crazy!  He doesn't sit still for anything anymore.  It seems like it's a common thing for those with Alzheimer's.
Posted: Thursday, October 28, 2021 8:26 PM
Joined: 5/22/2016
Posts: 482

Add my DH to the list of those who are in constant movement. I tried to put a fitbit on him, but because his steps are often like shuffles, it didn't register most of his steps. I'd really like to know how many steps he takes. He rarely sits, unless we're driving in the car. Which is about all I can do to get him to stop moving.