Just received the diagnosis


Registered User
Apr 9, 2008
Hi everyone - I'm new to this site but I can see it will be an invaluable source of information and support. My mother who is 78, received her 'official diagnosis' yesterday. We expected it, but nevertheless it makes it all seem so final with only one way to go - downhill. My mother lives alone, but keeps a nice clean house and herself, very well. She has a little dog whom she adores and takes out for walks twice a day. Her biggest problem seems to be at the moment, communication. She has great difficulty at times, in finding the right words to express herself. She'll start to say something and then just stop because the words wont come. She feels, in her words 'so stupid'. She can't master anything new - for example, a new tin opener. She cant remember where to place the wheel on the lid and how to hold it. A new dvd player sits unused underneath the TV as despite many attempts at explaining how to use it and leaving simple written instructions, she just can't grasp it.

Reading many of these posts - her level of AD and VD is nothing like some of you are having to deal with. But I worry at what speed it could deteriorate. I have broached the subject of us pooling our resources and her moving in with us to a house that has a granny annexe, but she isnt keen to leave the home she loves, plus that brings a whole lot of other problems. I live about 45 minutes from her, but know this will present a problem as she deteriorates. She's been presribed Aricept so I can only hope that this will slow things down. Sorry about the rant - I know nobody can give me the answers, but thanks anyway.


Registered User
Mar 6, 2007
Wigan, Lancs
Hi Larkrise and welcome to TP (Talking Point).

It is a shock when you get the diagnosis, even though in your heart of hearts, you knew what was coming. There is still that chink of hope that the medics will say 'It's just a problem with the thyroid (or something) which we can put right with medication'.

You don't say, but has your Mum been diagnosed with AD, or mixed AD and VaD? I presume that there must have been some diagnosis of AD as she has been prescribed Aricept? I have no experience of Aricept as my Dad's heart condition made him unsuitable for it.

My Dad's initial diagnosis of mixed dementia has now been modified to a type of dementia that particularly affects his speech.

As far as moving your Mum, the only advice I would give is not to make any rushed decisions, particularly as you are still coming to terms with the diagnosis. Others on here have had the experience (good and bad) of moving a parent and I'm sure they'll be along with good advice for you.


Registered User
Feb 13, 2008
Hi Larkrise and Welcome to the site

I look after both Mum and Dad - Dad has AZ and its a 45 minute drive to where they both live which I do each day. Believe me it is a real strain on you both mentally and physically.
But, I have to admit, my husband and I did consider moving my parents into our house, and after a lenghty discussion and taking lots of time think it through we decided that it wouldn't be our (my husband and I's) interest and wellbeing to do so.
Now I am thankful that we took the time out to think it through properly and then to make the right decision for all of us.
At least, when we are at home, we have some sort of 'normal' life.
Take the time to really, and I do mean really, consider all of your options.


Registered User
Aug 29, 2006
SW Scotland
Hi Larkrise, welcome to TP.

My husband has a form of dementia where language was the first aspect to be affected. His was very slow-developing, he was fit and well for six years though unable to read, write of hold a conversation.

But there are so many different forms of dementia, and probably even the consultant can't tell at this early stage what form your mother has. Some forms progress very quickly.

Please don't make any decisions yet. Wait and see how things progress, keep a diary of things you notice about your mum, and make sure the consultant knows how things are developing.

If you have any questions, don't hesitate to post them, someone is bound to have experienced whatever is worrying you.

Best wishes,


Registered User
Jan 1, 2007
Newcastle upon Tyne
Dear Larkrise,
Just to say I am in almost exactly the same position with my Mum. She got her official diagnosis a week ago, although like you I had known for a while. Dad also has AD - he went into a home in December as Mum could no longer care for him.

Mum has the same word finding difficulties, which frustrate her terribly - she can visibly shake when the words won't come out. It is not just new things she can't operate - she now can't do some things she has done all her life - like knitting and operate the washing machine. I don't know how long she will be able to continue to live alone, but as for moving her in with us I don't think it would work as I don't think she could adjust to new surroundings and would be on her own all day. Her house needs a new kitchen - because Dad would never spend money on it - but I think even that would be too much change for her. I know she won't want carers and even though she complains about being alone she won't go to a day centre.

Lately Mum has moved on from just being a bit forgetful and silly to thinking people on the TV can see her, which is so sad. She knows something is wrong with her but I don't think she realises it's what Dad has. When I tell her Dad is looking quite well (she doesn't visit him) she worries they will send him home. She seems to be declining at a faster rate than he did.

Best wishes, and I hope you will keep in touch.