I wish I hada timeline of how this is going to go...

Discussion in 'I care for a person with dementia' started by totallyconfused, Sep 20, 2017.

  1. totallyconfused

    totallyconfused Registered User

    Apr 18, 2016
    #1 totallyconfused, Sep 20, 2017
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2017
    I wish I had a timeline of how this is going to go...

    Id like to know where we will be a year. Today she is happy, physically good but is confusing people, photographs, thinks tv/radio is real, is scared of the woman in the mirror, says hello to her own reflection when shopping, thinks her favourite singer plays concerts in sitting room when its actually a dvd, sees this singer everywhere-the neighbour walking down the road, the gardener next door and so on.

    Its so hard not knowing whats coming next but I know that's true of real life and I asked a doctor at memory clinic whose mother in law is in same stage and she also would like a timeline. It made me feel a little better.

    Anybody know what we can expect next although I know everyone is different.
  2. Kevinl

    Kevinl Registered User

    Aug 24, 2013
    In short the answer is no. Over 18 months ago my wife went into care and in that time I've come to realise there is no logic in it.
    In that time I've seen my wife go downhill quite a bit but some of the other residents seem no different, people have come in and gone out horizontally in less than a month, others no more than small, shrivelled bags of bones are still there day after day while other much more robust people aren't.
    It sometimes surprises me that someone seems to be perfectly OK, takes to their bed and the next thing you know the name plate has gone from the door.
    My wife's decline from diagnosis was originally quite slow and we got by for over 8 tears at home, then it fell of the edge of a cliff one day and she ended up getting sectioned then put in care.
    My wife is only 64, has no medical conditions other than AZ and a thyroid issue the home's GP monitors, what time line is she on?
    Do I plan for her; 20 more years life expectancy for a woman of her age, the 8 years post diagnosis (which has already expired) that people quote for someone with AZ?
    Who knows what the future holds, she may outlast me.
  3. lemonjuice

    lemonjuice Registered User

    Jun 15, 2016
    Sorry but no-one can give you a definitive answer,

    Yes there are stages and most people progress through those stages sequentially. However the length of time at each stage and often there is a time of overlap which will differ very much from person to person.

    I have a friend whose mother was diagnosed with Vascular Dementia roughly a year before mine.
    Her mother is still able to talk, have some of the 'social graces', mobile to some extent and is only incontinent of urine.
    My mother declined very quickly, stopped being able to talk/communicate or weight-bear over 3 years ago. She has been doubly incontinent for over 4 years and for the past 2+ years shows little reaction to anything. Similar to 'locked-in syndrome she just doesn't interact with her environment at all. She has emergency after emergency ad manages to 'fight through', yet others who've only been at her NH for a couple of years who were much more capable and active have died sooner.

    If one read the information only a few years ago one was told female dementia sufferers were expected to live between 4-7 years with an average of half an expected life expectancy for their age bracket. I read now that has been revised upward to between 7-10 years and certainly my mother has far exceeded average life expectancy at 89 let alone allowing for her heart disease and dementia. Because my mother has Vascular Dementia, if one reads the info most people die from a heart attack or stroke. Yet my mother was 'dying' from heart failure well over 5 years ago and I was told when she survived, it was unlikely that she could live longer than 2 years, 5 at the absolute limit. Yet here she still is having just survived aspiration pneumonia. I reckon that pre-war generation are just a uniquely tough generation.

    I only wish there was some 'timeline'. It would make making decisions so much easier.
  4. Guitargeorge

    Guitargeorge Registered User

    Sep 21, 2017
    There is no timeline, we all wish there was I guess. Isn't the saying 'if you've seen one person with dementia - you've seen one person with dementia'? Everybodys journey is different, as others have said there seem to be stages but how long they last and the effect on the person are unknown until you experience it.
  5. Scouts girl

    Scouts girl Registered User

    Jan 18, 2017
    Everybody's journey through this awful illness is different. My mum was diagnosed with vascular dementia in January of this year and although we noticed some memory problems probably about a year before did not think it was anything serious and at nearly
    90 just assumed it was forgetfulness due to her increasing age. She deteriorated rapidly at the end of last year and moved into care. The last 9 months have seen a rapid decline both mentally and physically and she is now confined to bed and having end of life care. I never dreamed that this time last year she would be as she is now and wish that I had been better prepared to cope with knowing how quickly my mum would become so ill. I feel each person has a different timeline for this illness. Probably if one is physically well the time will be much longer but in my mums case due to her other health issues, unfortunately her time will be so much shorter. Just be there for them show them all your love and make the time they have left peaceful and pain free.
  6. Pear trees

    Pear trees Registered User

    Jan 25, 2015
    Unfortunately no one can tell, everyone's dementia is different. My 90 yearold mum was diagnosed 5 years ago and is now unable to talk or recognise anyone, is incontinent and sleeps all day apart for personal care and meals. Every time she was ill she declined, then plateaued till the next crisis. She could live for 5 more years or suddenly succumb to illness.
    Dementia is a terminal illness no one can give an accurate prognosis.

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