Aug 9, 2011

Got Milk?

Then, I waited patiently and kept my eyes peeled. Sure enough after about 20 minutes, there goes Dotty.

By Bob DeMarco
Alzheimer's Reading Room

The other day I wrote, Dotty, Walker, Incontinence Wear, Poop. Inside the article I wrote:
"Next morning, I think to myself, I am going to give Dotty a small glass of freezing cold milk and see what happens. I am thinking to myself, maybe this milk will run through her. I think this might be counter intuitive. Isn't milk supposed to constipate you? Yeah, I heard Doctor OZ say that. I dig Doctor OZ.

You'll notice I said freezing cold milk. Counter intuitive also, I think. I freeze the glass.

So I give the milk to Dotty and she immediately tells Harvey, this milk is ice cold. Harvey tells Dotty, ice cold, ice cold.

Along with the ice cold milk I give Dotty the first round of the daily medications. It all goes smoothly.

Next, I give Dotty some coffee, discuss the newspaper, and sing a few songs along with Harvey. Dotty usually joins in.

Lo and behold. About 20 minutes go by and there she goes. There goes Dotty. No assistance, no help. Straight shot to the bathroom".

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Well the milk didn't work on Monday because our routine was disrupted. We had to go to the doctor and also get a blood test. Dotty had to fast before the blood test. I tried the milk when we arrived home and it didn't work. We went through our usual routine, no luck.

This morning, I did give Dotty her very small glass of ice cold milk. She did tell Harvey, "this milk is ice cold". Harvey told Dotty, ice cold, ice cold. I laughed. See, when you get on the bright side of the moon the same repetitiveness that seemed so disconcerting can become somewhat funny. We follow our usual morning routine.

Then, I waited patiently and kept my eyes peeled. Sure enough after about 20 minutes, there goes Dotty. No assistance, no holding on, headed right to the bathroom and the toilet. When she finally comes back out, I ask, "any poop". Dotty tells me yes.

Now if I try and give Dotty either prune juice or cranberry juice first thing in the morning we go through what can best be described as a "pain in the butt scenario".

She sees the juice and before it even gets to her she is saying, "it's poison". She holds her nose. She might tell Harvey I am trying to kill her. I have to encourage, use positive reinforcement, and even sing to get her to drink the juice. Even when she does drink it, it is a sip at a time. I mean like 10-12 sips for three ounces of juice? You would think she is drinking $100 a bottle Port. It can feel frustrating. Especially when you consider that Dotty will stick an entire Mound bar in her mouth in once piece, and then start chomping away.

Let's consider this. Milk is white. White must look good to Dotty. Purple and red don't look good I must assume. She does know milk is milk, and prune juice is prune juice. She is clueless on the cranberry until she sips it and determines its "poison".

So anyway, here is my point. Maybe we should start a company and make white prune and cranberry juice specifically for dementia patients. Don't tell me they have white, the other stuff is yellow and it doesn't look like milk.

If they had milk colored prune juice, I could tell Dotty its milk. LOL. Doubt it would work but she might just shoot it in anyway.

I am asking myself, why didn't I try milk for the poo pooski a long time ago? I am also worried that it will stop working. Well not really worried. We will just go back to the prune.

Go figure this. I think Dotty has pooped seven out of the last eight days. I'll keep track for a while.

I must be having a bad day. I am already thinking as I write, milk won't work tomorrow. Well this is not one of those things that I can will to happen like I often do.

I'll pray instead.

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Bob DeMarco is the Founder of the Alzheimer's Reading Room and an Alzheimer's caregiver. The blog contains more than 2,800 articles with more than 602,100 links on the Internet. Bob lives in Delray Beach, FL.

Original content Bob DeMarco, the Alzheimer's Reading Room