1. janeymouse

    janeymouse Registered User

    Jan 1, 2007
    12
    London
    Hello

    This is the 1st time I have posted here. My Dad has been recently diagnosed with Alzheimers, although we had an idea, to actually hear it is still a horrible shock. He is in his early 70s and lives with my Mum. I want to do all i can to support them, I jsut dont know where to start. My Mum has been given a helpline number but dosent feel up to calling it yet! The consultant said he will probably prescribe some medication for him, does anyone have any thoughts/advice on how effective the medication is?? I am feeling very afraid for my parents future!

    Janey
     
  2. Amy

    Amy Registered User

    Jan 4, 2006
    3,453
    Hiya Janey,
    Welcome to TP. Fears are one thing, having them confirmed is another, so your shock is quite natural.
    By finding TP you have found an excellent source of information and support - we are a friendly bunch, and between us have a vast amount of knowledge and experience.
    It might be an idea to start by looking at some of the factsheets (top left corner of the screen).
    Try not to be afraid. There will be changes, but you and your parents will manage them. They will not happen overnight. Your dad will always be your dad. You still have lots of good times ahead.
    Love Helen
     
  3. alex

    alex Registered User

    Apr 10, 2006
    1,665
    Hiya Janey

    Sorry can't offer much advice on this subject, but just wanted to welcome you onboard.............As Amy has said..........this is one hell of a bunch of lovely people and i know you will get all the help and support you need to get you through the time ahead!

    Good luck and best wishes.
    Love Alex x
     
  4. Grannie G

    Grannie G Volunteer Moderator

    Apr 3, 2006
    69,537
    Kent
    Hello Janey, So Sorry about your dad. I`m glad you`ve found TP because you will get so much help and support here.
    As you read different posts, you will realize that no two cases are the same. There are lots of comparable similarities, all under the umbrella of Alzheimers or Vascular Dementia, but the symptoms differ, or progress at varying rates.
    The carers share the suffering, and many are able to help each other gain strength through Talking Point. I hope this will apply to both you and your mother too.
    The medication has different effects in different people. For some, it`s a godsend, but with others it has distressing side effects. It`s a matter of trial and error.
    Your dad won`t change overnight. Just bear with him, support him and your mother as best you can and make the most of the good times. There will still be plenty.
    Please keep in touch. Love, Sylvia x
     
  5. Áine

    Áine Registered User

    hello janey

    even if mum doesn't feel up to phoning the helpline number, you could get her on the mailing list of your local Alz Society. when dad was diagnosed the consultant did this automatically. Alz Soc sent a load of fact sheets (might be easier for mum to manage if she doesn't use the net) and a newsletter, and info about resources at the local branch. it felt a real lifeline at the time.

    it IS a shock having the diagnosis ....... but in my experience, diagnosis is the key to starting accessing any services ...... so once the shock settles you might find some positive in it.

    take care, keep posting, i'm sure there will be plenty of people here who will be able to help you.

    Áine
     
  6. Cate

    Cate Registered User

    Jul 2, 2006
    1,370
    Newport, Gwent
    Hi Janey

    Just wanted to say hello and welcome. You have already been given advice about the Factsheets, which is a good place to start.

    Here any time for a chat.

    Best wishes,

    Cate
     
  7. mel

    mel Registered User

    Apr 30, 2006
    1,656
    Sheffield
    Hi Janey
    just wanted to say hi and welcome
    Hugs
    Love xx
     
  8. janeymouse

    janeymouse Registered User

    Jan 1, 2007
    12
    London
    Thank you so much for your warm welcomes!!!

    I am glad I have somewhere to come for advice and support, still trying to take it all in.

    Janey
     
  9. Lynne

    Lynne Registered User

    Jun 3, 2005
    3,433
    Suffolk,England
    Hi Janey,

    Welcome on board, but sorry for the distress the diagnosis must have caused you and your mum. However, my attitude to it is "know your enemy", so now you have that diagnosis you can learn as much as you can about it from other family members and their experiences.

    No two people are the same, but certain symptoms & behaviours are common throughout the various forms & causes of dementia.
    Learning about them in advance can save you agonising about 'did I do something wrong' when in fact it's just something that would probably happen whatever you did (or didn't) do. Changes in behaviour & attitude can seem so hurtful, but they are involuntary when they happen, not meant personally.

    Whilst your mum may not feel able to take the 'step' of calling that helpline number, (and I understand that she may feel it's like stepping down a 1-way street, I felt the same way about applying for Power of Attorney for my mum) there's nothing to stop you calling it is there.
    I have just made contact with a local Carer's support group, which also looks promising in the way of pooling ideas & experiences.
    Knowledge is power, and can help you 'be prepared'.

    Good luck & best wishes
     
  10. Nell

    Nell Registered User

    Aug 9, 2005
    1,170
    Australia
    Dear Janey,
    Welcome! Just a few things that have popped into my mind and may have already been mentioned by other people (if so, please forgive the repitition!).
    Power of Attorney - please ensure your Mum (and you??) have POA as soon as possible.
    Variations from day to day - you may have already noticed that your Dad can be good one day and not doing well the next?? Or changes can occur over shorter periods of time. In the early stages of Mum's diagnosis I found this particularly difficult as it made me doubt the diagnosis at times. I think it is important to remember that the fluctuations do not mean the diagnosis is incorrect (even tho' we wish it was!)
    You may find you cannot always tell the AD person the truth - this is partly because they don't recall what you've said and partly because it can cause them extra stress. For example many TPers have found that telling and retelling the AD patient that someone near to them has died is distressing to the AD persoin who appears to "hear it for the first time" every time. Even with less important things you may find it necessary to tell "little white lies". My Mum has AD and her's is characterised (at least in part) by obsessional thoughts. Lately she has been anxious about the whereabouts of items from her home (shemoved into a Hostel 18 months ago). She will ask again and again "Who has got my cake tins?" or similar. At the time she moved she gave us all the things we wanted and had us donate the rest to charity. Now she doesn't remember the part about the charity and becomes very distressed if we tell her something went to charity. Now we say "Oh, person X (son, daughter, daughter in law, grandchild, etc.) has that!" and she is happy. This is very distressing for us because we hate "lying" to our Mum, but it does save her from real distress over and over again - often about very unimportant things (the cake tins were about 50 years old, bent and rusted!).

    It truly is a very individual journey for each AD patient - and therefore for their family. The fact sheets are helpful; the TP postings are very helpful, and hopefully you can support your Mum and each other as a family. Thinking of you and sending you strength to cope. Nell.
     

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