He does not have dementia or Alzheimer’s but he has multiple other chronic issues. Heart disease, type 2 diabetes on insulin, the major 2. But he claims to sleep well..but then sleeps, or Nanna naps, as he calls the majority of the day. Is there something else I should be looking out for. His GP doesn’t seem to be bothered by it. But I know he gets frustrated with himself because of it.
Good luck to you and dad!
Often times, seniors nap during the day from boredom.
My dad would nod off all-day at home but, he was able to stay wide awake when engaged in activity or fellowship.
It's just about impossible to keep up that level of stimulation at home. Can Dad go to a senior center during the day to see if that engages his attention?
It is nearly impossible for us to get him out of the house due to his extreme lack of mobility and his size (he is over 300 pounds) and his dependence on a mobility scooter that is oversized (and doesn't fit in many public restrooms) and his walker usage in public is very limited due to small spaces as well (at home he has a "system" of using safety bars and furniture to navigate places his walker can't fit. So in order to take him anywhere it takes two of us and a lot of planning. As you can imagine - we are very limited as to where we can take him - and its not very frequent. So he is isolated at home a lot.
As a result- he has also CHOSEN to self isolate in his room. Its not a small room. He converted the large bonus room YEARS ago into his bedroom. So he has his computer desk, his tv, his electronic lift hospital bed, all of his accessible equipment from the VA(mostly reading and hearing equipment, extra tables, etc) plus some other furniture. But its upstairs and he uses a stair lift to get there. And he NEVER comes down unless he is leaving the house. He goes down the hall and back to get to the bathroom and that's it.
So HE has self limited what he does during the day to that room - literally. He is bored- and a little depressed (we've had that checked out) because HE chooses not to leave the room. We've encouraged him to get out on his scooter, go get his mail, ride around the neighborhood when the weather is good, sit downstairs, sit at the dining room table to eat, be in other rooms. He won't have any of it. He prefers just HIS space. He toggles between his desk and his bed.
And because of all of that - when he gets bored - he goes to bed. He will often sleep ALL day. And then stay up late into the night and nap off and on at night and the sleep all day again. It messes up his medication schedule and his insulin schedule. His doctor asks about his schedule and we just have to laugh. The most I think we have ever tracked is 19 hours in one 24 hour space. The least is 9 hours. And on the 9 hour days he will say that he didn't sleep at all.
With him, when he gets in the bed, he will say it is to watch tv. But he will lay it flat and put that CPAP mask on. That's NOT to watch tv because he can't even SEE it (sorry that's the honest truth - he can't see it over his belly). And once that mask is on...he's going to sleep - there is no question. We've suggested if he wants to be directly in front of the tv to sit UP in bed and not put the mask on and he looks at us like we have grown extra heads.
We have asked him why he does this. His response. "What else am I going to do?" We KNOW he is bored. He won't do what is available to him. And leaving the house, which is what he would like, is just not an option very often. So it's a catch-22 unfortunately. But sleeping is definitely a choice and not an illness response for him.
Did the cardiologist also ask for a head CT?
The real question about the normal amount of time for your father to sleep is whether it's normal for him. If you've noticed a marked increase, that's what you need to report to the GP.
Why are you worrying about bladder cancer? is he having any difficulties (that he admits to) with passing urine?
Take a good look at the foods and snacks your father is eating. Reduce simple sugars and carbohydrates. Include lean protein with every meal or snack to help "balance" the digestion and minimize hormonal spikes and dips.
My first thought is diabetes. Too much insulin makes us sleepy.
Heart Disease also can make us sleepy. I would get him to a doctor for a checkup and blood work. He may need a new doctor.
In my opinion, normal doesn't exist, but I am a believer in the statement, "You can sleep when you're dead." Sorry for the humor, but that's what I say to my husband, but then sometimes I say, "Hey, you're retired, go take a nap."
Sleep provides the energy to rejuvenate: oxygen intake is crucial.
Mom has lost most everything that meant anything to her in her life....her husband, parents, friends (all are deceased), home, possessions, control over her finances, medical care, and her life basically. So sad... I think anyone in that position would just want to sleep to not have to think about it.
Her AL facility has all sorts of very good activities and things they offer for the residents to do. But mom isn't interested in doing any of them and typically refuses. Wants to just sit in her chair all day or sleep. She was brilliant but now can't remember anything sometimes even 5 minutes ago. Still has some long term memory, but it is fading.
Mom is taking medications for her depression and appetite etc. She does take vitamins, and we have her scheduled with three days of PT/OT/ST each week. She also is on the schedule for once a week to the salon to get her hair and nails done.
We do all we can to get her out and encourage her. I'm over there almost every day at least to take her to lunch and sometimes to dinner, out to enjoy shopping at Goodwill (she loves that), or just riding around to look at all the clouds and blue sky. Looking at family picture albums, etc.
But at the end of the day, unless she were able to go back and live in her too large and unsafe house with all her possessions by herself, nothing really satisfies her or makes her truly happy. We do all have a great relationship together and have had and are having some good times. But it will never be the same for her as it was. (We are actually in process of selling all the contents and her home now).
We are making "lemonade out of lemons", and doing the best we can to stay positive and encouraging.
I'm so sorry you and your dad are going through this. Hopefully you will find a good way to help him accept it and still enjoy his life some..sending prayers for that to happen.