Mirrors

janjan

Registered User
Jan 27, 2006
229
59
Birmingham
:confused: Dad's now cannot recognize mom or myself.
But he must be able to recognize himself somehow, because he doesn't like what he sees in the mirror at his N, home, because he's smashed the mirror there.
He's never been violent before and everyone thinks hes a nice gentleman.
He has deteriorated a lot in the last two months, and he has been looking in the mirror on and off at himself more over the last few weeks.
Anyone got any ideas on why he should finally decide to smash it up, we are very lucky he didn't hurt himself or anyone else.
Anyone else got trouble with mirrors?
 

Ashburton

Registered User
Feb 19, 2007
99
I've had problems with mirrors at home, initially mum would wave at the mirror and say hello, then she got agitated by it, so I covered up all the mirrors, they are still covered up but reflections at night in windows do not seem to be causing too many problems now.
 

Canadian Joanne

Volunteer Moderator
Apr 8, 2005
16,304
66
Toronto, Canada
I personally haven't encountered this problem but I have read in several places that mirrors, TVs and so on can really bother a person with AD.

For the mirrors, I think it's because they don't recognize themselves so it must be rather spooky watching this person mimic whatever he or she does. So tell the NH not to replace the mirror as I don't think there's much point in doing so.

Apparently TVs can cause an awful lot of trouble too, because the AD patients think it's a real person and/or event happening.
 

elaineo2

Registered User
Jul 6, 2007
945
leigh lancashire
Hi there,can i suggest you put a fake mirror in his room.not actually a mirror but a mirror sized photo of himself from times when he was well.Thats the time they remember most.Sorry if i have intruded,just a suggestion.love elainex
 

Margarita

Registered User
Feb 17, 2006
10,824
london
I Read its because they don't don't recognize themselves in the morrow so are seeing a stranger , its a delusions

delusions are common , he could be seeing his dad and getting angry at him for some reason

if delusions are not associated with behaviour problem , just ignore them .

because he's smashed the mirror there.
seeing that they are coursing anger , fearful , am wondering if they give your grandfather any medication for it ?
 
Last edited:

Taffy

Registered User
Apr 15, 2007
1,314
But he must be able to recognize himself somehow, because he doesn't like what he sees in the mirror at his N, home, because he's smashed the mirror there.
Hi jan jan,
Maybe, your dad doesn't recognize himself and See's this person looking back at him, as a stranger that is watching him, possibly it could be distressing him to the point where he just wants rid of the stranger, hence, smashing the mirror. Hopefully a solution will be found. Regards Taffy.
 

Nell

Registered User
Aug 9, 2005
1,170
68
Australia
elaineo2 said:
Hi there,can i suggest you put a fake mirror in his room.not actually a mirror but a mirror sized photo of himself from times when he was well.Thats the time they remember most.Sorry if i have intruded,just a suggestion.love elainex
I think that's a lovely idea, Elaine!
 

Nebiroth

Registered User
Aug 20, 2006
3,511
I believe that this is because people with dementia can lose the ability to distinguish between images in mirrors/televisions etc and real people. They may attempt to hold conversations with these "people" and become agitated when there is no response. Alternatively, they may regard the reflections/images as strangers invading their homes.

This could include not recognising your own reflection.

I suspect that your dad may not recognise himself, and in the mirror sees and angry stranger, he doesn't know who they are or where they came from and the stranger won't talk to him.

I would say that the time has come to remove the source of the trouble and to take away the mirrors.

The problem is common enough that the assessment questionnaire asks if patients can recognise reflections for what they are, or whether they attempt to hold conversations with them.
 

janjan

Registered User
Jan 27, 2006
229
59
Birmingham
Thank you for all your suggestions, i have had a very restless night sleep trying to figure out what is the best thing to do.
This was a mirror that was available for all residents.
There is a mirror in his bedroom so i think i will cover it with some nice wrapping paper, bright and cheery. I do like the idea of a picture of him when he was a lot better but because he cant talk anymore except the occasional word, i think it is obviously frustrating him to look at himself anyway. He didn't know his father getting old because he was only 10 when his dad died so he would have remembered him young in his late 30's anyway.
 

MillyP

Registered User
Jan 5, 2007
108
London
He may also have Capgras Syndrome like my Dad, who has Vascular Dementia.....apparently it's more common then alot of Doctors realise and seen alot in Dementia patients....see link

http://www.damninteresting.com/?p=793#more-793

QUOTE:
People suffering from Capgras' Syndrome can sometimes even doubt their own identity after seeing their reflection in a mirror. One man pinched himself on the arm after seeing his reflection at the doctor's office, and wondered aloud whether he and the man in the reflection were the same person. There was also a woman who flew into a jealous rage every time she caught sight of her own reflection, believing this "other woman" was trying to lure her husband away from her. Her husband eventually covered every reflective surface in the house in an effort to keep her from hurting herself.