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Restlessness | Doctor's Diary

From a medical standpoint, restlessness can be a very tricky symptom . Sometimes, it is perfectly understandable as boredom, and need not be medicalized as a target for therapy, but rather needs a common sense approach of relieving boredom. But this can be tricky as the patient lives in an environment in which they are expected to sit quietly. 'Restlessness' as a medical problem is also tricky if, in fact, it represents the side effect of drugs (such as neuroleptics) that are prescribed (and often over-prescribed) to people with dementia. Especially if the original reason that the neuroleptic was given was for agitation, subsequent restlessness can be interpreted as a sign of agitation, and thus more drug is given, when in fact a lower dose of the neuroleptic is needed.It is also particularly important to remember that, in a person with poor language skills, restlessness can be a sign of pain.

See Also:
Symptom Library > Behaviour > Wandering
Symptom Library > Behaviour > Repetitive Behaviour
About Dementia > Alzheimer's Disease > Sundowning
Symptom Library > Personality Changes > Anxiety and Worry
Symptom Library > Personality Changes > Interest/Initiative (lack of)
About Dementia > Treatments for Dementia > Exercise
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Last updated December 7, 2018
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