Concern over my mum

mjlmuk

Registered User
Jul 26, 2006
5
Hi,

My mum is 62 and is suffering from constant memory loss.

She forgets the day, hour and recent events. For example she will regularly buy 2 newspapers within the same day.

Other examples include forgetting how to make drinks, as in she cant remember how many sugars someone has in there tea.

Earlier today I took her to the supermarket but sat in the car. I told her that we was on the left hand side of the shop just outside the canteen.

When she came out the shop she turned right and carried on regardless, happy as can be.

When I talk to her about it she gets abusive and just turns it on to me saying im fat, depressed etc etc.

She claims to have been to the Doctors but I think she is lying and in denial.

It is not only me that has noticed it. Friends, relatives including my dad and sister have noticed the same traits.

Any advice or thoughts would be useful. Am a little stressed tonight so if my desciption is vague, just let me know.

Thanks
Mike
 

Helena

Registered User
May 24, 2006
715
Dementia in all its forms you have summed it up in one

They will deny vehemtly anything is wrong .......its the rest of the world thats mad not them
They hover ,are suspicous ,accusitory and often aggressive

Lies are the tour de force

Download Enduring Power of attorney forms from Guardianship website and get them completed and signed and witnessed PDQ

because finances and bills will rapidly be the next almighty muddle
 

Kayla

Registered User
May 14, 2006
621
Kent
Dear Mike,
The symptoms you describe could be due to other medical conditons, as well as some kind of dementia. It might be an idea to jot down the things that have worried you and then persuade your Mum to go to the GP to check her blood pressure, weight and general health as well as her mental state.
In the early stages of short term memory loss, making shopping lists and jotting jobs to do on a calendar might help a lot. 62 is quite young to be having problems with memory loss, so hopefully there may be another explanation for it. Many people have a problem distinguishing left from right, so that may be nothing to worry about.
Kayla
 

Amy

Registered User
Jan 4, 2006
3,453
Hiya Mike,
Welcome to TP.
Someone needs to talk to your mum and get her to revisit her GP (probably best if someone can go with her.; dementia is not the only cause of short term memory problems, so other things (eg thyroid, vitamin deficiencies, depression) may be ruled out by blood tests.
Sounds as though mum may be scared and in denial - think about it, would you want to think that you may have dementia? From experience I know that GP's can be dismissive of memory loss, my mum was told "it happens to us all" - don't be fobbed off - you know what is normal in a woman your mum's age.
I must admit, it took me quite a while to get mum to go to the doctor's, had to resort to tears and emotional blackmail.
I think where you are now Mike is one of the scariest times, fearing but not knowing. Dementia is not the end of the world - though at times it feels like it - there are still good times ahead.
Love Helen
 

Helena

Registered User
May 24, 2006
715
I agree its a good idea to get other possibilities ruled out but Hypothyroidism normally presents with tiredness and aches and pains long before any brain fog / memory problems

Vitamin deficiencies etc would have to be pretty severe to cause the extent of symptoms described
 

mjlmuk

Registered User
Jul 26, 2006
5
Thank you all for taking time to reply. It is nice to know I have somewhere I can go and have people who will experience the things I have been going through.

The trouble is ... if I mention Doctors to her, that is when she gets aggresive and a load of foul mouth abuse comes out. Not 4 letter words, but just personal stuff. She will fling any mud she has, even though it is irrelevant ... so am unsure how to get her there.

Is it possible for me to write a letter to her GP?

I live at home with my mum and dad as I am currently renting my property out to help start up a business.

Would my mum go into a home or need round teh clock care? If so, how long does it take to develop into that stage? Would we lose our home to pay for this?

Thanks
Mike
 

Amy

Registered User
Jan 4, 2006
3,453
Hey Mike, slow down.
Yes, you can write to mum's GP. I made an appointment to see mum's GP myself, told the receptionist that it was about my mum, and sat in the surgery and poured out all my concerns. Then got my dad to go to the GP with mum - so GP knew questions to ask, and was fully prepared.
My mum started with short term memory loss about 15 years ago, and was admitted to full time Nursing Home this year. My father has done a excellent job as her fulltime carer, with a little support from daycare, and sitters. Do not worry about that yet. Agencies will do all they can to help your dad and the family care for mum in her own home as long as possible.
Love Helen
 

dmc

Registered User
Mar 13, 2006
1,157
hi mike
i think you need to think about getting your mum diagnosed before you need to start worrying about her going into care homes and poa forms,
the main thing is to try and get her to a doctor take one thing at a time try not to think too far ahead get over this hurdle then you can think about what comes next
keep in touch let us know how it goes
take care
 

mjlmuk

Registered User
Jul 26, 2006
5
Thanks again for your help.

I guess i'm just writing all my thoughts over the last 12 months down on here.

She has been like it for that long, maybe longer, but the conditions are worse now.

I think I will try and write a letter to the GP ... but she would not go with my Dad or anyone else for that matter. Such is her paranoia about it all. Any tips for this situation?

Thanks again folks

Mike
 

Brucie

Registered User
Jan 31, 2004
12,413
near London
Hi Mike

The best that can be offered on Talking Point is experiences we have had with our own relatives - the first thing to note is that you are not talking to anyone here who can make a diagnosis, so you need to have her see someone who can.

You may have to use subterfuges to organise that - the good old one is to say the surgery is giving everyone over 60 an MOT. This actually does happen, so is not a complete fiction. Our surgery did it at 50.

The problem with self diagnosis [and Mum may believe she has something dire like dementia] is that we can often persuade ourselves it is true when it is not, and we start to get symptoms. so if your Mum suspects at all she may have memory issues, and that they may be due to dementia, she will be petrified and her behaviour will be erratic...she will be very sensitive about it.

I once went to the village health food quack to seek an alternative to antihistamines for my rhinitis. He scared the living daylights out of me, looking at my eyes then saying I'd go blind, have diabetes, etc... if I didn't go on a total exclusion diet. I felt more and more ill during the next week then saw the GP who chuckled and simply made out a prescription for a different medication, which sorted the problem. Point is, because I believed I might be really ill... so I felt that way. We all forget things through life, quite naturally. We can also forget things by being preoccupied [eg with health], or depressed, etc.

There is no quick test for dementia, other than post mortem. All the alternatives need to be worked through and it can take a while. That would, of course, be most trying if your Mum is not a willing patient.

For the present, just try to take a step at a time with her.

Are you living with your mum?
 

mjlmuk

Registered User
Jul 26, 2006
5
Hi Brucie

Thank you for your response.

Yes I live with her. I have been for the last 8-9 months. My dad is with her most of the day as they are both retired. It is having an effect on his health as well, stress mainly.

Thanks
Mike
 

Brucie

Registered User
Jan 31, 2004
12,413
near London
Any tips for this situation
main tip is to keep a daily diary of things that appear not to be normal. Your initial summary was on the right lines, but make the points in a way that is related to each day. That will show patterns. Provide times as well if you can.

Then you have something substantive to show the doctor.

It would be a good idea to be thinking forward to an Enduring Power of Attorney, however, your Mum would have to sign it with the knowledge of what she was signing. That may simply not happen!
 

Sandy

Registered User
Mar 23, 2005
6,847
Hi Mike,

The Alzheimer's Society (which is responsile for this site, Talking Point) has a number of really useful factsheets covering many aspects of dementia-related issues, including things like Enduring Power of Attorney (EPA).

There is a link to all the factsheets in the top left-hand corner of this site, or just click here: http://www.alzheimers.org.uk/Facts_about_dementia/factsheets.htm

Take care,

Sandy
 

Margarita

Registered User
Feb 17, 2006
10,824
london
Talking Point purpose and rules

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These online forums are meant as a support group for peer-to-peer discussions, and are not an official channel for the Alzheimer's Society
Does sound confusing :confused: Sandy so they can't be as you say
(which is responsile for this site, Talking Point
 

Sandy

Registered User
Mar 23, 2005
6,847
Hi Margarita,

Maybe I've got the wrong end of the stick here, but from an administrative point of view, the Alzhiemer's Society is responsible for the overall running of TP. It runs on their servers (hence the URL http://[U]www.alzheimers.org.uk[/U]/TalkingPoint/discuss/index.php) and is responsible for inviting community members to become moderators. Moderators are considered Alzheimer's Society volunteers.

The bit that you quoted:

These online forums are meant as a support group for peer-to-peer discussions, and are not an official channel for the Alzheimer's Society

I take to mean that the advice and information exchanged is between individuals and does not necessarily reflect the official views of the Society.

The reason I wanted to make the connection clear is that the area with the links to the Home page (of the Society) and the Factsheets is so small and indistinct that someone stumbling on TP might not realise that the factsheets are there or understand the relationship to the main Society pages.

That's my take on it anyway.

Sandy