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Lack of Motivation with Dementia?
Vik
Posted: Monday, March 11, 2019 11:38 AM
Joined: 2/26/2019
Posts: 172


Does anyone else hav problems with apathy?  I cant get motivated at all to "do" anything, even activities i use to luv to do.  I know depression causes apathy but if dememtia does too, im in trouble.

 

Ive thought about drinking coffee first thimg in the a.m. sinc i don't drink coffee or other caffeinated drimks at all. What do u guys think r do to fight against apathy?


Iris L.
Posted: Monday, March 11, 2019 11:50 PM
Joined: 12/15/2011
Posts: 15837


I don't like the term apathy because it has a negative connotation.  But I can't come up with a suitable substitute.  Anyway, apathy is common.  

 

IMHO, part of apathy is fatigue.  So getting enough rest is important.  Also important is not tasking our brains too much by executive tasks, such as multitasking.  Meaning, I am less apathetic when I don't have body fatigue or brain fatigue.  

 

We have to simplify and make our lives easier.   I have apathy about performing hard tasks, but I don't have apathy for tasks I am comfortable with.

 

Apathy is distinct from depression.  Many professionals are not aware of this and may attempt to treat apathy with anti-depressants, with no results.

 

Iris


Vik
Posted: Tuesday, March 12, 2019 12:17 AM
Joined: 2/26/2019
Posts: 172


THANKS for your info on apathy.  Very informative! My counselor had told me not to wear out my brain, but i didnt know what he meant, but now i do bcuz of ur insight!

The past few days i hav been readi g everything i could get my hands on about dementias, and i hav been TOTALLY exhausted!  One day i slept 10 hrs. and the other days i slept 9 hrs. apiece, so now i know why!  Again, THANK YOU for ur input!

Mayo Clinic website and N.I.H. website hav ALOT of info on benefits of good sleep witb people with dementia, but ive learned alot from ur posts on ALZconnect.


Iris L.
Posted: Tuesday, March 12, 2019 12:38 AM
Joined: 12/15/2011
Posts: 15837


Vik, our brains remove waste products while we sleep.  This is why getting restful sleep is so important.  There are different stages of sleep and not all stages are restful.  You can read more about that.

 

Iris


Smilesyourway
Posted: Wednesday, March 13, 2019 12:48 AM
Joined: 1/11/2019
Posts: 70


Great posts above.  Iris is right on with rest and good sleep.  I'm not sure its apathy for me, or more the disease itself.  Its proven that dementia can create trouble with organizing, decision making etc.  I often have such great thoughts of accomplishing things, but at the end of the day I often don't even know what I did or got done.  So yes sometimes I feel that I'm uninterested or unenthusiastic. 

 


Vik
Posted: Wednesday, March 13, 2019 9:48 AM
Joined: 2/26/2019
Posts: 172


I read somewhere on this site or Mayo Clinic site that the vitamin/ supplememt MELATONIN taken at nite promotes better sleep.  Im going to.try it as i hav problems either getting to sleep or stayin g asleep.  I NEED 9 hrs. of sleep to function as well as i can.   If i get 8 hrs., i hav some cognitive and walking/falling problems. If i get less than 8 hrs.of sleep, i REALLY hav cognitive, memory, and walkimg issues!  If i get 7 hrs.or less of sleep, i try to take a nap so i dont get frustrated by my increased cognitive and falling issues.  Does anyone else hav walking/balance issues with their dementia ? 

I use to get SO FRUSTRATED by the INCREASED cognitive and memory problems as i thougjt that my dementia was increasimg. Once i.figured out it was due to lack of enuff sleep, i didnt get as frustrated and knew it was a time to take a nap or at least rest my brain!

 


Smilesyourway
Posted: Wednesday, March 13, 2019 11:24 PM
Joined: 1/11/2019
Posts: 70


Oh my gosh Vik I know exactly what you mean.  The times that you thought your disease was getting worse.  Only to get good sleep and be back to where we were.  One thing I need to start doing is going to bed a little earlier and at the same time.  Soooooo VERY important. 

 


Vik
Posted: Saturday, March 16, 2019 4:01 PM
Joined: 2/26/2019
Posts: 172


I looked up international Dememtia website u told me aboht and its only 20 mi. from me!  May hav to go visit them....hope youre havi g a good weekend!  Do u still work?
Smilesyourway
Posted: Sunday, March 17, 2019 6:55 PM
Joined: 1/11/2019
Posts: 70


Hi Vik,

I no longer work.  I tried for about a year after my diagnosis but was unable to work in a stressful environment and was having trouble getting BP under control.  With all my cognitive problems it became unbearable.  I hope you find DAI helpful, especially since you are right there. 

Smiles


Vik
Posted: Monday, March 18, 2019 12:05 AM
Joined: 2/26/2019
Posts: 172


Smiles, i had to giv up workimg 3 yrs.ago.bcuz of some other health issues. It was hard emotionally to stop workimg as i luvved what i did but could no longer work with all the pain and weakness in my arms and legs.

 Little did i know that two years later i would get a dementia diagnosis!  Probably one of my biggest fears with it is that i wont b able to communicate when im havimg pain.  Just one more thing to b anxious about---huh???

I sure enjoy readimg ur posts!  I feel so alone bcuz no one i know has dementia. I also live by myself so it is rather lonely. Thats why i connect so much with all the postings bcuz it helps me feel less alone, especially knowimg that people here hav experienced or are experiencing most of the things i am.


Smilesyourway
Posted: Monday, March 18, 2019 9:14 PM
Joined: 1/11/2019
Posts: 70


Vik were you assigned to a support group by DAI yet?  That has been a life saver for me.  Really helped me chatting once a week live with folks that are like kind. 

 


Vik
Posted: Tuesday, March 19, 2019 11:21 AM
Joined: 2/26/2019
Posts: 172


Smiles, does the International Demen.Alluance send u notifications of the weekly discussion groups? Im having trouble gettimg to that. Ive got ZOOM on my computer so just need to know what to do to next to get signef up.for the weekly discussion. Got am2y suggestions?
Smilesyourway
Posted: Thursday, March 21, 2019 12:48 AM
Joined: 1/11/2019
Posts: 70


hmmmm go to website and email them for the assigned group. Email Kate Swaffer or message her for an assignment.  Hope this helps Vik.
mdriscoll_hk
Posted: Wednesday, March 27, 2019 5:24 PM
Joined: 3/27/2019
Posts: 1


I was diagnosed with sleep apnea about nine months ago and using the apnea sleep machine I now have less than 5 apnea episodes per hour as compared to the 27 I initially tested with. If you snore or wake up tired all the time, having a sleep study (often now can be done in your home) may be helpful.
Vik
Posted: Wednesday, March 27, 2019 10:05 PM
Joined: 2/26/2019
Posts: 172


MM-Driscol,  THANKS for ur post and insights!  Good for others to read as i was diagnosed with Sleep Apnea and hav had a CPAP machine for 2 yrs.  Keep on posting as u never know who u will help!
Agent 99
Posted: Thursday, March 28, 2019 2:46 PM
Joined: 6/7/2013
Posts: 2152


This topic came up a few years ago when someone mentioned abulia which I didn’t know what that was.  Here’s one of my responses including what I thought was a very thorough article about the course of lack of motivation in dementia.

 
The constellation of motivational disorders include apathy, abulia and akinetic autism - from lowest to highest severity). I think it is important for patients and care concierges (aka caregivers) to avoid judging someone with dementia who experiences apathy (or more) because it is not a choice, not a sign of laziness - it's a neurological condition caused by a malfunction in the motivation circuitry in the brain. 

This article is very thorough in discussing the motivational disorders even though it focusses on their manifestation from traumatic brain injury. There is a diagram of the brain circuitry that mediates motivation as well as a list of the meds prescribed to treat motivational disorders. Aricept and exelon are listed. The author states that the apathy presented in Alzheimer's relates to the prefrontal cortex, parietal cortex and the amygdala.

I hope this helps in the understanding of "why".

 
For other posts on motivation on this site here’s a link to the search results on abulia:

Iris L.
Posted: Thursday, March 28, 2019 6:12 PM
Joined: 12/15/2011
Posts: 15837


Thank you for sharing that article, Agent 99.  I was prescribed Exelon patch and Namenda and have had good improvement in my speech and memory compared to 2009.  


Yet, I did not notice any significant change in motivation.  I am doing better motivation-wise now, in 2019, but I credit that due to changes in sleep apnea treatment and improvement in other areas.  


It is very unfortunate that most professionals are unable to distinguish low motivation and apathy from depression, since they call for different approaches.

 

The "search" webpage you linked did not bring up search results; we will have to perform our own search for motivation pages.


Iris L.


Still Plenty to See
Posted: Tuesday, April 2, 2019 1:26 PM
Joined: 4/2/2019
Posts: 1


It’s interesting about the need for the right amount of sleep and the way the brain rids us of waste while we sleep. It reminds me of the way the brain and the rear end got into an argument over which one really had control over the body. The brain said, “Oh well that’s easy. Everyone oughta know the brain is in charge. But the rear end insisted it was the rear who’s the BOSS of the body. The brain said “No way buddy! The brain’s the boss! You rear ends just take care of the waste!” So to settle it, they both went on strike. After a few days the rear end was holding on for all it’s worth while the brain was starting to get unraveled. But the brain was stubborn and just sure it would out-last the rear end. A week went by. The brain was turning body parts pale and weak like some sick skunk just stumbled up the street. But the rear end was gritting it’s . . . well, what ever a rear end uses for gritting teeth. The rear end was totally confident making remarks to the brain like, “Ha! I gotcha now ya over ed-ye-cated so n so! Say Uncle and I’ll end it here and now! So the brain gave in and said, “ok UNCLE! you’re the winner!” And it ended with both ends knowing who the boss of the body really is. So, the moral to the story is, “You don’t have to be a brain to be a boss . . . Just a Deriair”
Iris L.
Posted: Wednesday, April 3, 2019 12:23 AM
Joined: 12/15/2011
Posts: 15837


Welcome, Still Plenty to See.  I don't know your process of diagnosis, but wanted to be sure that you are aware of chemo-brain after chemotherapy and of CTE, discovered by Dr. Bennet Omalu.  These conditions can be dementia mimics.

Iris L.


 
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