Dealing with boredom

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Dealing with boredom

Postby Martha » Sun Aug 22, 2004 9:48 pm

Hi everyone. I've been on dialysis for 4 months and I'm trying to find ways to deal with the boredom of sitting there for 4 hours. I sleep for the first 2 hours, but the last 2 drive me crazy. For some reason, I can't enjoy tv. Do any of you have any ideas on what to do to make the time go faster?
Thank you. :roll:
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Dealing with boredom

Postby Bruce » Sun Aug 22, 2004 10:02 pm


I'm on CAPD, not hemo, but being new at it my exchanges take quite a while. Do you like to read? It sounds like a great opportunity to catch up on literature. Several previous posts list favorite books and authors.

Sometimes I set myself up in front of the computer and pass the time that way.

Good luck. Four hours is a long time and I hope you find a way to deal with it.

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Postby pamom2 » Sun Aug 22, 2004 11:50 pm

I really feel for you. I went thru the same thing.The tv was not keeping me entertained either. I took a CD player with me and listened to my favorite songs. I also took puzzle books with me and I remember one lady had her son's Gameboy with her. Hope this helps!

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Postby Rachel in NY » Mon Aug 23, 2004 2:48 am

Hi Martha,

Do you like to Read? Draw? THese are things you can do. Get a good book.. and read the minutes away. I did. Also, you can get a cd player, with some cd's that you enjoy. You can just close your eyes and listen to the music. How about learning a new language, with audiobooks? I DID try that.. can't say I learnt any spanish though ;)

Are you in school? Can you do homework?

One other thing I did was this. I had Microsoft Flight Simulater on my pc.. and i'd choose a destination, and map out the route on the program. THe airports, how long it takes, etc. Then.. I'd read up about my destinatin, touristy stuff.

Once at dialysis, i'd pretend i'm on the plane. I really got 'into' it and spent alot of time daydreaming. i'd have stopovers, etc. lots of imagery. at the end, when i'd start feeling sickish - that would be 'turbulence', and a rough landing. hehehe.

the point is, i kept very busy thinking about things.. and it has helped me.

pick a subject, any subject, and get 'into it'. then daydream. it DOES help.

anyway... another idea is a portable dvd player. you can watch dvd's. you can sew, you can knit. I've done crossword puzzles and madlibs, word games and other stuff in those paperback thingys you can pick up at the supermarket checkout. I played games on a Palm Pilot and Nintendo (couldnt' concentrate much though), etc. there is SO much to do.. its just a matter of finding it ;)

I couldn't sleep during treatment. VERY occasionally I've nodded off, and once in a while I was given benadryl to help me fall asleep as well, but for the most part, they didn't let me sleep, bc apparently it had something to do with my blood pressure. Sleeping slows it down? from sleep to awake - something happens, and they didn't want it plunging, which it did anyway.

good luck.

Last edited by Rachel in NY on Wed Aug 25, 2004 5:58 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Postby oldborris » Mon Aug 23, 2004 8:26 am

I can understand why you can't watch t.v. while on dialysis. I have five t.v. sets at home, in every room in the house including the loo, so much an addict am I. Well, at nearly 80 and a bit wonky on the old pins, why not? But I can't watch t.v. on dialysis. In fact I positively hate it. I hate the way one can't concentrate on a story 'cos of constant interuptions, 'cos of continual background noise, 'cos of very often not being able to see the screen if I do want to watch something and of being forced to listen to the noise even when I can't see, of the fact that those patients who do want to watch t.v. only want it in its lowest, dumb-downest form. Oh! I do so hate dialysis force-fed television.

But you are lucky, very very very lucky in that you can wipe out 2 hours of dialysis in sleep. And if, from the plethora of suggestions that have preceded my posting, you can't find anything to make you wish you could stay awake for four hours, to sample them all, there is nothing more that I could suggest.
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Postby JMan » Mon Aug 23, 2004 2:17 pm

Well there's a lot of things mentioned all ready that I've experienced..

One thing I could rarely do was sleep on haemodialysis.

I also agree with Boris's comments about 'Force Fed' TV. The only successful way to have TV's in haemo units is to have individual TV's with headphones.. (Unit designers take note, NOTHING ELSE WORKS)

AND the headphones need to be sufficient to keep out the noise of nurses yammerring, machines etc etc.

Now.. onto what to do on dialysis. I never got into puzzles or crosswords.

Often the end of dialysis can make it harder to concentrate on anything, TV, reading etc..

For me, a typical dialysis would go like this.

After getting in, setting up my machine and pack, and getting on I'd usually eat (I loved my food;)), then do an hour or 2 of study. (often on my laptop). and listen to some music.

Studying is good as educational grants are the one thing dialysis patients can get fairly easy access to, and this includes money for stuff like laptops etc etc. (these days most laptops would also double as DVD and music players, games machines etc.)
If you are listening to music via headphones a good pair is essential. Something in the 30 - 40 pound mark, that cuts out a lot of sound (of machines, nurses, other patients, TV's, phones etc) will definitely improve your experience. With these I could put on favourite trackes and drift into other worlds with the music.:D:D

Apart from studying, I'd read, listen to music, play games on my laptop, talk to other patients (in some units this doesn't seem to happen, which is sad). The unit also had a large glass fish tank which was quite relaxing to watch.

Of course some days were better than others, but most of the time four hours passed faster than you'd think.
Last edited by JMan on Wed Aug 25, 2004 5:40 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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Postby Art from Ontario » Tue Aug 24, 2004 2:55 pm

I have a suggestion:
Send one another puzzle postcards from one's own files of photographs.
All that is needed is one's first name & e-mail address.
The website sends the postcard to whomever you choose.
Once you have received a puzzle postcard, you can change the
number of pieces or just ask the computer to solve it for you.
I could be very interesting to see photos from others on this board.
It is prudent to open a new e-mail account just for this.

The website is

If anyone wants to try it, send me an e-mail saying so
and I will send you one of my puzzle photos.
my email:

Art from Ontario
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Postby JMan » Tue Aug 24, 2004 5:13 pm

Or I could just post a link here?? ... ce_classic

Now there was a time we used to play iSketch:)

Of course the above only work with a web connection available, so probably better for PD than hemo...:) SO sadly not so good unless you have wireless access in your unit..:)! Would work for home hemo I guess.
Last edited by JMan on Fri Sep 03, 2004 6:11 am, edited 2 times in total.
"Dialysis! What is this? The dark ages!"
L. 'Bones' McCoy, ST"
Read my blog:)
Live to Fly
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Postby Art from Ontario » Tue Aug 24, 2004 5:57 pm


I guess I wa thinking of those on PD rather than hemo
Art from Ontario
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Boredom on Dialysis

Postby Art from Ontario » Tue Aug 24, 2004 7:38 pm


thanks to you you I finally figured it out..

here is the link to my puzzle gallery

Art from Ontario
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Postby Pam » Wed Aug 25, 2004 6:57 pm guys really have a lot of good suggestions. When I was on hemo, there were no tvs, computers, etc. :cry: so a lot of people read or did puzzles. One lady always brought her knitting in and I imagine made a lot of beautiful items for her family and friends. Rachel has a lot of really good ideas, but I agree-if you are feeling sick, it's hard to do anything.
Did anyone have trouble on HD because of the needles restricting their movement? I could never figure out how some people were able to move their hands around without setting off the alarms! :wink:
Awhile ago, some people had started a crafts program at one unit where people could do a thing kind of like rug-hooking, but with plastic pegs. I imagine it did not require a lot of arm movement so it was easy for the patients to do. Being a crafts and an art person, I would suggest something like that. Of course, if you're a guy, maybe that's not your thing, although many men do typically "women's" crafts like needlepoint or even knitting.
I do agree that if the patients could chat with each other, it would make the time go much faster. It would be hard, though with all the noise that is so typical of a dialysis unit and if someone who didn't feel well was put next to a person who loved to talk, it might be difficult for both of them.
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Postby Andy » Thu Sep 02, 2004 7:48 pm

Art, you have me hooked on that jigsaw page, its all ive done recently!!!!

We are the way we are, if we werent, I wouldnt be me and you wouldnt be you!
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Postby Anne in Va » Fri Sep 03, 2004 3:33 am

Thanks to you both, my husband is neglected. My house has dust bunnies hopping all over in gay abandon and many other horrors are taking over and closing in. All because you have me hooked on jig-saw puzzles. You would think a mature woman would have better sense!

Actually I feel as if I have entered my second childhood. I loved puzzles growing up and you have brought a wonderful memory back into my life.

Thank you.
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