|Ma dancing and looking out the window for her friends|
Vascular Dementia and Lewy Bodies Dementia have similar symptoms; sometimes a patient has both VD and LBD. From what I've read, both illnesses cause the patient to have detailed hallucinations; my mom, she sure has made up some pretty amazing stories from what she had "seen."
Two weeks ago my mom saw Dr. Barton's colleague for the first time. My mom was a bit lethargic on the drive to her office, slumping to the left, drooling and not talking because her word finding was not very good.
Marcie interviewed my mom, asked her some questions and observed how she answered, if she could answer. Two weeks ago, she had lots of trouble with her words, however yesterday she was stringing more words together and creating sentences. The Acupuncturist also noticed that my mom's face appeared different, she was more relaxed where the frown she had become accustomed to sporting was gone. My mom was more engaging and followed along with the conversation. It's an improvement, even if it's a small one.
The study states that they performed acupuncture twice a week for 3 months. My mom, she's only 6 treatments in to the plan; we have a way to go, but the results are encouraging. Improvement from acupuncture could mean that she can change the TV herself, handle long drives up to Maine to visit family or talk on the phone with her kids.
One thing that I am noticing is that my mom feels really good. She believes that she is capable of doing so much more than she has been able to demonstrate.
How does it work?
Acupuncture, as it was described to me, typically begins with a lot of treatments in the beginning. It's a way for the body to realize what tasks the body can actually perform. Once the patient has gone through the initial treatments, there should be improvement. The body will also begin to take control back and the patient will only require maintenance sessions. I don't know the time frame for the maintenance sessions, we are walking down uncharted territory.
I can say with confidence that my mom is improving with her Acupuncture ... 6 Treatments and word finding is improving.
She's also dancing, this is a new behavior. I play music instead of putting on the TV. She began to think TV was reality and boy, did we have some nightmares to resolve.
Music, with upbeat words and sounds seems to contribute to happy moods for her. Her new favorite musician is Jack Johnson. When she hears his music play, she gets up and starts to dance. I love this new behavior!