It seems to me that my husband's short term memory is a little worse. I noticed it about a week ago. Today I had to run an errand and I always tell him before I leave that I have just fed the dogs and took them out to potty. When I got home 2 hours later he had fed them again and took them out when I pulled up. This was not necessary as I had done that just before I left. I am concerned but I don't think it is necessary to call the doc. I am scared because this is just the beginning. Diagnosed July 28th last year. Once they lose a little more memory does it ever change for the good or have more brain cells died or does he need an increase of Aericept or Seroquel? I know you can't advise but what has your experience been with this sort of thing ? Thank you
I, on the other hand, have just regular forgetfulness. This morning I thought of something I'd wanted to tell her about, and went into the kitchen to tell her. By the time it took for me to get there, I had completely forgotten what it was! But I've been doing that since I was 16. Once, I remarked about my father to a girl I rather fancied that my father's only gray hair was in his mustache (he was about 48 then). About 5 minutes later, I said the same thing. She said "Yes, you told me that about 5 minutes ago." Talk about embarrassment! But these two incidents don't add up to dementia, I trust.
The symptoms of a lower urinary tract infection include at least one of the following:
pain, or a burning sensation when passing urine but since people with dementia don't necessarily feel pain in the same way this is sometimes not obvious
the need to pass urine immediately but as elderly people are often incontinent this one isn't easy to notice either
the feeling of not being able to urinate fully - See comment on incontinence
cloudy, bloody or bad-smelling urine - this is a sure sign that you need medics
lower abdominal pain- given that a lot of elderly people have difficulty passing a bowel motion sometimes you may miss this one too
urinary incontinence - well see incontinence because this one is the one I always miss
mild fever (a high temperature between 37-38°C or 98.6-101.0°F) Sometimes, especially if it is warm and there is o apparent flushing of the skin this would be easy to miss
delirium/acute confusion (sudden onset confusion developing within one to two days) - this is more common in the elderly.
And this is the big one we are not talking anything you see day to day that you might class as delirium - this is a massive change in behaviour that comes on suddenly in Mum can happen in 12 hours as I mentioned earlier - by the time we got her to the hospital and they had spent 8 hours pussyfooting around it had turned into sepsis which is life threatening so act quickly if in doubt. The trouble is that this delirium is also indicative of TIAs which Mum also has or perhaps a stroke so its not even that easy for the medics at first sight or so they tell me
I expect you were having an episode of forgetfulness. Your mother's over-reaction makes this whole thing more dramatic than it would have otherwise seemed.
If you need help you'll be open to the idea. If you have close friends tell them you want to know if they start to worry about you.
But, really, we ALL have moments where we lose focus, forget something, are distracted, etc. People in their 30s have such moments, and people in their 60s do -- maybe a little more frequently. That is vastly different than having dementia.
After living in assisted living for 1 year it became clear we needed to move him to Memory Care. He has been there since November and I have noticed a big change in his memory. Every day seems to be a clean memory slate. I still visit every week and while he forgets my visits he is not disturbed. He is happy to see me. He seems very relaxed and enjoys the 24 hour care and companionship he gets at the facility.
He no longer calls me every day. Maybe once a week he calls to just say hi.
While my heart breaks to see my father losing his memories and personality, I find some comfort that he is not struggling so hard anymore with the pain and terror he was in for over a year knowing he was losing to this the terrible disease.
My heart goes out to all affected and touched in their daily lives by Alzheimer's and Dementia.
Her 3-years-older sister has a much more advanced case. She apparently does not recognize her own son in person, though she knows his voice when he calls. C's case is better, in that she can still drive, cook, do laundry, and interact with people--all more competently than her sister could three years ago. We have long-term care insurance which will allow us to stay in our home unless/until it gets too dangerous, after which we'll have to move to Assisted Living. But she still drives competently to and from familiar places. For unfamiliar ones, she needs me along to tell her where to turn (and indeed, why we're going to our destination).
My mother now thinks her husband and her mother are alive and will soon come Home. She lost both in 2003 which probably caused the depression and consequent self destruction of the brain to remove bad memories and live a happier life; happier than she would be if she was sharp, as well as happier than us who know the truth.
Please remember to take care of yourself. This will began to have a stress and physical affect on your personal health. Without you there everyday, how will your husband cope? Accept help from neighbors and friends as well as other organizations you or your husband is a member of.
I'm just so glad she's settled into the nursing home and is overall very happy. They do treat her well there... I think we are blessed.
My mother (type of dementia unspecified) is definitely declining in memory, but as she is in a nursing home this is not putting her at risk. She is content, and her attitude is friendly and cheerful.
As we share our experiences, TJ, I'm sure you are getting the sense that there is no one universal pattern for dementia. It is very hard to predict its progression. You are seeing some decline in memory. What does that mean? Will it keep going at that rate? Maybe. Or maybe that day was a fluke and it won't be that bad again for a long time. Or maybe he will plateau at this level and this is about what you can expect for several years.
The heck of it is, nobody can confidently tell you which of the maybes it will be.
I love what hospicechaplain has written. If you can establish and maintain ongoing communication and partnership you both will be in the best position to handle both the manageable moment, and the intimidating future.
That is, once their memory has gotten bad, they can forget their petty or other bad behaviors they might have had, or, be easier to guide them in what needs done daily.
But, memory itself only gets worse, not better, as far as I know, for Alzheimer's and other dementias. Once the brain is "broken", mostly it stays broken, and gets worse.
Loss of hearing can make communication and forgetfulness seem worse.
When hearing loss is mixed up in how a person's brain is deteriorating, they are kinda locked in their own world. Hearing-deprived persons will fill in the blanks in actual information, with whatever makes sense in their heads at the moment--add any of the dementias, and it gets very creative!
Dad is on Aricept and Namenda, highest dose. It helps a lot. Try not to be afraid. Just focus on who your husband really is. If you know the Lord, rely on Him and he will see you through it.