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My dad has suspected dementia

AllyW

New member
Jan 4, 2021
2
0
I took my dad to have a ct scan last week after he “failed” a memory test. He has a follow-up appointment at a community clinic and I’m worried how he will react to a dementia diagnosis. In order to persuade him to go for the scan we told him (amongst other things) it was a routine scan but now just don’t know how he will take the diagnosis, he was angry with the woman from the memory clinic who mentioned dementia, kept saying he didn’t have it.
 

Old Flopsy

Registered User
Sep 12, 2019
275
0
My husband still doesn't accept the diagnosis- over one year on. He is angry with the doctor and says he will be having words with him for telling such lies. I'm afraid it's a typical response. But he takes the medication which hopefully will stop him getting worse- he thinks he is taking it 'to stop him ever getting dementia'.
 

Sarasa

Volunteer Host
Apr 13, 2018
3,920
0
Hi @AllyW, and welcome to Dementia Talking Point. You'll find lots of help, support and advice here.
One of the problems with dementia is that quite often people with it genuinely can't see that they have a problem. My mother was like that, it made much more sense that her neighbours were coming in and moving her stuff rather than she was doing it and not remembering. Trying to convince someone with dementia that they are wrong gets you nowhere, it's much better to employ what round here are called 'love lies' and do the sort of things @oldflopsy suggests.
This link Compassionate Communication with the Memory Impaired gives some hints and tips. Don't beat yourself up if you don't always manage it. I failed all the time with my mother, but when I did use the tips it did help make things a little easier.
 

Duggies-girl

Registered User
Sep 6, 2017
2,906
0
Yes perfectly normal, my dad never had dementia although he did accept that he had a slight memory problem just like most old people, he even accepted his memory pills because everyone of his age took them.
 

Jaded'n'faded

Registered User
Jan 23, 2019
2,237
0
High Peak
It's not surprising. I'm sure if the people around me started saying I was forgetting/repeating things or was acting strangely, I think my reaction would be one of angry denial. Add in the loss of self-awareness and a touch of dementia logic and... no, it's not surprising. My mother even said to me once, 'Yes, I know I had dementia once but that was years ago and I'm better now!'

It is, however, extremely annoying, frustrating and unhelpful. Good luck...
 

Lawson58

Registered User
Aug 1, 2014
2,603
0
Victoria, Australia
When my husband's appointment with geriatrician was due, he was adamant that he didn't want me there, in fact he was very hostile to the idea. Geriatrician had obviously seen this happen before so I had a separate session prior to OH.

My husband had been in total denial after his appointment, he told me that there wasn'tit much wrong, 'Just a little bit of Alzheimer's'.

Almost seven years on, he still doesn't believe really that he has the disease and he has probably acknowledged it about five times since diagnosis. However, he does use his patches and takes al the medication the geriatrician has prescribed. That suggests to me that deep down, he probably suspects that he does have AD.

Though this denial can be very frustrating for family and carers, in some way it protects the person with dementia from having to face the truth. There are some people with these diseases who do have insight into their situation and some of them bravely post on Talking Point.
 

AllyW

New member
Jan 4, 2021
2
0
My husband still doesn't accept the diagnosis- over one year on. He is angry with the doctor and says he will be having words with him for telling such lies. I'm afraid it's a typical response. But he takes the medication which hopefully will stop him getting worse- he thinks he is taking it 'to stop him ever getting dementia'.
Thank you
 

Dunroamin

Registered User
May 5, 2019
150
0
UK
I agree that denial and lack of insight is an overwhelmingly common occurrence. I had an early diagnosis and still have insight. Most of the time I feel I am on a one woman mission to try and educate people to seek an early diagnosis and also to foster honest conversations and openness. This is fraught with obstacles, not least by the attitudes of some health professionals, some of whom, sadly, are ex colleagues. i think stigma has a central role in this whole subject and no one likes to think they have declining abilities.

In general terms this relates to those convinced they can still climb ladders, balance on chairs, see and hear well, ignore medical symptoms, drive safely and understand new technology. Seen in this context, the PWD is no different really. Their denial is understandable and I am sure as I continue on my own dementia journey I will become just as intractable, frustrating and exasperating.

@AllyW - we are all individuals. The term dementia will rest easy with some, others will always rail against it. Perhaps try using different terminology. There is much on these forums somewhere about compassionate communication. Perhaps someone can come along and post a link for you? (Interestingly this is something I could do at one times without thinking.)
 

Shedrech

Volunteer Moderator
Dec 15, 2012
10,956
0
Yorkshire
here's the link
 

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