Not an OT?
This is a palindrome. It spells the same both ways, front to back, back to front.
And that is pretty well where the intelligence stops.
This morning I had a visit from an Occupational Therapist. It was a follow up from my recent visits to our Falls Service. I have been wobbling a bit more recently, and nearly falling a few times.
A few weeks ago the falls OT gave me useful exercises to help me be steadier, for which I am grateful.
Today’s OT was different. She visited me at home in order, presumably, to look round the house and see what I might need to adjust or add to help avoid falls in future. I thought it would be good to see if there were any suggestions that would help me.
So along she comes. She says we can sit outside, to avoid using masks. OK.
She tells me she has read various notes from the falls service and produces a rubber end for a walking stick.
The dog, of course, went mad, because it smelled like a ball. It WAS a ball as far as she was concerned, and she kept diving into the OT’s pocket and wining to get it.
Dog in car.
And on we go. I don’t use my stick inside, only on walks on rough ground if I am feeling tired. So rubber end? No thanks.
Then…are there any trip hazards in the house?
Well, we have some rugs but they are quite thin and lie flat.
Do you have stairs?
(This looks like a house with stairs! Not a bungalow and not a block of flats.
Yes. And there is a banister up the inside which I use and that is fine.
So is there anything you have difficulty with?
Um. Well, it’s just that sometimes I wobble and nearly fall. And I can trip over things if they are on the floor and I forget or don’t know.
I did wonder whether a grab handle would be useful in the shower.
Ah. Here are some websites where you can buy suction handles. But make sure you check it every time before you have a shower.
Time between sentences drifted a little longer.
So what do you usually look for or ask about when you visit someone with dementia? I asked.
Well, the same as today.
I say, as long as I am careful to think about everything I do, before I do it, I am usually ok. But that is tiring. And it is the tired days when I am more likely to wobble or fall.
Do you have a routine?
Yes. And I like to stick to it, though it’s not rigid.
So I think you are doing really well.
I’m sorry, I feel I have wasted your time.
No, no. It’s what I’m here for.
And with that she leaves.
So what the hell was the point of that visit?
She didn’t even go inside the house!!!
She didn’t look round the garden to see if there were falls risks. (There are.)
Total waste of her time, my time, and my tax.
I know for a fact that there are some great OT services out there. This was not one.
(And it’s worth adding that she missed the first booked visit two weeks ago because she did not get or pick up the ansaphone message I left for her, which she asked for, to confirm the time.)
I am flabbered by this. Just when I thought I was going to get some useful advice or tips, I find that I know a lot more than she is prepared to demonstrate.
What is the point of an occupational therapist visiting you at home about falls if she doesn’t even go inside your house?
So, back to the campaign trail.