Late stages of dementia


Registered User
Jan 26, 2007
My mum has moved into the late stages of dementia(multi infarct dementia) in the last few months and I am wondering if anyone has been through this and can tell me how best to cope with the huge swings in emotions that this causes. Twice she has been in hospital and twice we have been told to expect the worse but she has fought on - she is only 62 and her young age has helped her pull through but sadly the dementia is much much worse. One half of me says maybe it would be a blessing for her to pass away but the other half screams no I don't want my mum to die even though she is no longer who she used to be. I hate what this illness is doing to her and I hate the fact that there is nothing anyone can do. Life is cruel and I keep thinking why us ? why my mum ? why ? why ? why ?


Registered User
Mar 16, 2005
Hi willowsue,

Different circumstances but similar feelings. My Dad is 84, has been in a Home for over two years and is now in hospital. He has a chest infection, keeps running a temperature, constantly sleepy and is finding it difficult to swallow. Part of me is sure he will pull through this, he's always been physically strong, yet another part of me is wondering if this is it. My Mum seems to think it is the beginning of the end and she cannot stop crying.

As you say, that may be a blessing, yet I still want my dementia-Dad back even with all the down sides. I can't (or won't) believe that we're here at the final stage yet.

Your Mum has been ill such a long time and it must have been so hard for you to have been all through this twice.

I'm sorry I don't have an answer to the "why?" - because I believe there is none. Sometimes I feel like I'm an actor in some horrible drama but I don't have the script so have no idea how I should behave nor what I should be doing. All I can do is hold on to memories of past happier times and keep acting.

Just wanted to let you know you're not alone. {{hugs}}

Michael E

Registered User
Apr 14, 2005
Ronda Spain
Willowsue that is so difficult - this is my third try at writing something to maybe help but I am beginning to think there is nothing that can be said.. I felt the same emotions over my father many years ago when he was on his way out... really confused as to what I wanted for him... When eventually he did die it was like a release - for me..

For your mum to be so young and have such advanced Alzheimer's is truly dreadful. Seems so unfair and to be hanging in there when there is no road back health and normality seems unfair as well..

Just wanted to say that it is sad and that I feel for you



Registered User
Jun 10, 2004
South East Wales, UK.
Hi Willowsue,
My mum is 67yrs young! She has had AD , well, diagnosed when she was 57, about 2 years ago she developed a terrible chest infection and us as a family thought this is it, we were at the hospital every day for weeks and weeks and she pulled through, I thought it would have been a blessing for my mum to go, pass away, but what I'm hoping for is a peaceful passing away, that she'll close her eyes and just slip away. But the time being she struggles to eat small amount of pureed food because she is still able to swallow on times. And we visit as a family & just sit & spend time with my mum. Sometimes she is awake but most of the time she sleeps & I'm glad in a way because when she is asleep she seems blissfully unaware of what this horrible illness has done to her !
Thats all we can do is be there, and take the rough with the smooth, doesnt get any easier and I think all carers can relate to this.
I cannot bear the thought of my mum not being there anymore but I know the time will come & it will be a blessing for my poor mum & my poor dad who over the years has had to live his life alone , of course he has us as a family but his lovely wife has been taken away from him years ago. Some days its unbearable but thats all we can do is carry on and try to be strong. Take care x


Registered User
Oct 3, 2006
Re. Your dear mum

Hi Willowsue. My mum passed away in December and reading your post brings back the memories of those dark days when she was in the later stages of dementia like your dear mum. All I can say to you is I know exactly how you are feeling right now....and though you may feel so guilty thinking want them to end this its so painful to watch a dear loved one having to go through this terrible time. Now I look back a couple of months I realise my mum was not suffering as much as I was. She was weak and frail...but I dont think she really knew any of it....and didn't really show any signs of pain...I always thought she looked comfortable if that makes any sense. Of course when you see your mum like this its so hard to believe that the lady you once knew a few years previous is this person....I know this feeling too well. Try and be strong...and look after you its so easy to crack up at this time. I seemed to acquire an inner strength from somewhere....which looking back...seemed to really help me. The day before my mum passed away we were told she had about six weeks to live....but I knew she would never last that long. Your mum is so young.....please be strong.....and always remember that t/p is here for it was for really does help. Godbless. Love PP xx


Registered User
Apr 30, 2006
I haven't posted much on my mum recently as I find it hard to do so.
I am experiencing mixed emotions right now.
Since mum broke her hip in december she has deteriorated so the point that over the last few days she seems to have lost the ability to speak.....she tries but only utters noises.
she doesn't eat but she will have "fortisip"
she drinks when i am there because I help her......she has forgotten how to hold a cup.
She has picked up 2 infections during her stay in hospital and has developed a nasty cough over the last week.....I have brought this to the attention of the staff on numerous occasions......
she looks at me with pleading eyes......for what she is pleading I don't understand.....
she cannot walk so when she has had all her assessments done she will go into a nursing home.
For Gods long does it take to assess someone?
I just want her out of that filthy hole......
i am told these things take time.........
I now know i wish it was all over......
I can't bear to see my mum like this......
Yesterday I sat and stroked her hand and I told her it was ok to let go...........


Registered User
Aug 29, 2006
SW Scotland
mel said:
I haven't posted much on my mum recently as I find it hard to do so.
I am experiencing mixed emotions right now.

Yesterday I sat and stroked her hand and I told her it was ok to let go...........
Wendy, I'm so sorry you are having to go through this. I went through the same thing with my Mum -- not AD, but a stroke. We knew she was going to die, she didn't want to live in that condition, but it took two months.

It's so hard, watching them suffer, and knowing there is nothing you can do for them apart from be there for them, and let them know they are loved.

You've done the right thing, letting her know it's all right to let go. I did the same. But all the same you still have to watch them suffer.

Can't say anything to make it easier for you, except that I'm thinking of you, and wishing you and your Mum peace. I know all about the mixed emotions.

Lots of love,


Registered User
Nov 28, 2005
Willowsue and Mel: Nothing to add really - so very sad that our precious ones get to this point - we have lost them for a long time but it is still so hard at this stage. My thoughts are with you - I pray that you find the strength you need knowing that when the final stage is over YOU have done your utmost. You have many friends on tp who totally understand about this cruel cruel disease.
Best wishes Beckyjan

Eve G.

Can anyone tell me what to expect in the later stages of multi-infarct dementia? My mother's about in the middle now . . .

Things are so awful that I can't help thinking Dr. Shipman should have been given a knighthood, not sent to jail.

Eve G.

Tina said:
Can't really generalise, Eve G. and am not a medical expert....can only say how it was in our case....both Nan and my aunt had multiple infarcts and in the later stages just kept having more and more little strokes and bigger ones too which took more and more away from them each time...
Wishing you strength and courage and all the best,
Thanks. Lately, Mom has been more talkative, but also more delusional, which her doctor said is fairly normal as it progresses. He said, too, that there are so many symptoms that there's no telling which one will show up! Thank goodness she's not violent or abusive, but she is terrified and depressed, which is just as bad in some ways.