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Early stages of dementia.... What to expect?

Lola Belle

New member
Jan 14, 2018
1
0
Hi, my mum has dementia and was diagnosed approx 2 years ago. The last 6 months we have seen a significant change in her. She is struggling to recognise my dad who she has been married to for 47 years but is very clear about me and my sister. Any suggestions on how to help her with this? She feels he is like a stranger to her?..
 

margherita

Registered User
May 30, 2017
2,797
0
Italy, Milan and Acqui Terme
I do not have direct experience, but it seems it is useless to try to make a PWD recognize the person they have forgotten.
Maybe it would help to persuade your mother that that man, whoever he is, is friendly and harmless
 

Amy in the US

Registered User
Feb 28, 2015
4,617
0
USA
I'm sorry that I also don't have direct experience of this. When my mother doesn't recognize me, there is nothing in the way of hints or reminders that help. She sometimes doesn't even think she has a child at all, let alone know who I am, and no amount of prompts or explanation has any effect.

I wonder if your father could say something like "I am here to help look after you" or similar?

I have seen posts here from people whose spouses have demented, and often think they are a "member of staff" or other professional carer.

Are you familiar with the compassionate communication guidelines?
 

karaokePete

Registered User
Jul 23, 2017
5,663
0
N Ireland
This may sound like a crazy notion, but would you mum recognise your dad in a photograph of the two of them from a few years back and then accept a story like that he has been ill lately and aged as a result? It’s a bit radical, however, I’m wondering if she has a mental image of her husband as a younger man and so just doesn’t recognise the older man now in front of her but will accept an explanation like this - a love lies kind of thing. Dismiss this as nonsense if you think it a foolish idea as I’m just trying to think ‘outside the box’ a little in an effort to help. Best of luck to you anyway.
BTW, welcome to TP. I’m sure someone with experience of this situation will see your post and be able to advise.
 

karaokePete

Registered User
Jul 23, 2017
5,663
0
N Ireland
If you don’t get any more replies maybe a chat with the experts on the helpline would be useful. The number is
0300 222 11 22