1. Our next Q&A session is on the topic of Christmas and dementia.This time we want our Q&A to involve our resident experts, you! Share tips and advice on navigating Christmas here in this thread.

    Pop by and post your questions or if you prefer you can email your question to us at talkingpoint@alzheimers.org.uk and we'll be happy to ask them on your behalf.
  1. Batter

    Batter Registered User

    Nov 5, 2015
    1
    How do you get through to your 81 year old mother,she as dementia.:confused:
     
  2. Beate

    Beate Registered User

    May 21, 2014
    11,744
    Female
    London
  3. Hair Twiddler

    Hair Twiddler Registered User

    Aug 14, 2012
    886
    Middle England
    #3 Hair Twiddler, Nov 8, 2015
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2015
    I'm guessing that you have had a definitive diagnosis confirmed by a doctor. In which case I'm also guessing that the professional has chatted to your mum and highlighted at least some if not all of the diagnosis.
    My own mum has been told that she has dementia but like many, only feels that she forgets unimportant things very occasionally and believes that there is nothing wrong with her other than her hips, legs, eyes and ears, oh and a wicked daughter (me) to boot. Sometimes she does believe me when I explain that some of the many tablets she takes are for her heart condition.

    You are most unlikely to get through to her something which she most probably patently believes is not true. In all honesty your are making your own situation worse by trying to a) convince her and b) telling her an untruth (in her eyes).

    You will see from reading many of the established ( I nearly said "old"..aghhh :D) posters here on TP that your mum and you are on a rocky and difficult road - save your energies for tomorrow and enjoy the today with your mum.
     
  4. Quilty

    Quilty Registered User

    Aug 28, 2014
    1,051
    GLASGOW
    I say to mum she is just a bit tired when she gets confused. She no longer remembers she has dementia and i am honestly glad about that. There is nothing to be gained by her understanding her condition.
     
  5. Tin

    Tin Registered User

    May 18, 2014
    4,815
    UK
    In my experience Batter, the quick answer is that you can't and its precisely because of the illness that you can't. I suppose the best people to answer your question would be the members on here that have personally received a dementia diagnosis. I often read their threads and they can give an interesting insight. for me this illness is all about how I deal with it. For my mum and the stage she is at, if we discussed that she has dementia, she would be very upset. deny, then get very angry with me and then forget it.
     
  6. patsy56

    patsy56 Registered User

    Jan 14, 2015
    839
    Fife Scotland
    Hi Batter and welcome to TP.

    I told my mother she had dementia when she asked me what was wrong with her, (her brother and his wife both had and she remembered Fay had it)..........but she said rubbish it's old age.:D
     
  7. canary

    canary Registered User

    Feb 25, 2014
    10,783
    Female
    South coast
    I was with mum when the consultant said that she had Alzheimers, so I know that she was told, but she honestly has no idea that she has this. She also doesnt think that she has anything wrong with her at all and tells me that she keeps herself "as fit as a fiddle". This is beside the fact that she takes loads of medication for high blood pressure, atrial fibrillation, kidney failure and glaucoma as well as drugs for her Alzheimers and she can now hardly walk :rolleyes:
    There is no point in trying to convince her, she just gets very upset, so I dont.
     
  8. Earthangel

    Earthangel Registered User

    Feb 8, 2014
    13
    South Yorkshire
    Very difficult, we will all have different answers. However, I had the same problem, my mum is 81 has Moderate Mixed Vascular and Alzheimers Dementia, she didn't understand what the specialist said in her front room. Then when I told her best friend what the Specialist said "she hit the roof". Dad and I put some things down to old age two / three years ago, didn't really ever discuss it and when he was diagnosed with Bone Cancer from Prostrate Cancer in January 2014, we noticed something was really wrong with mum and I told mum I wanted her to go to the doctors, because I thought she had Dementia and they could prescribe tablets what helps. However, she hit the roof and accused me of lying, was awful to dad who was dying and told her sister and her daughter (my cousin) not to come anymore. Dad died in June 2014 and I left it a while to get over the grief etc.... then in September 2014 she agreed to go to the GP, had memory tests which she failed (although these are not fair) and then had brain scan which showed shrinkage of the brain and poor blood circulation, but her GP said she could be depressed with dad dying, so she had to go on Anti-Depressants for 6 months, then her GP said we should wait another year, then in the next breath said "put mum in a care home", she wasn't or isn't that bad. So I waited for him to go on holiday and then went to see his colleague. Within 2 weeks mum was diagnosed. She still doesn't think that her brain doesn't work right, logically or forgetfulness, but I managed to convince her with mum your blood doesn't pump around your body and brain right. She is OK with that, she tells me she feels her blood juddering through her veins, but she ain't keen on going to the doctors , unless she really needs to. She still gets very upset with the Dementia bit, especially when she says it is always on the news and television.
     
  9. Witzend

    Witzend Registered User

    Aug 29, 2007
    4,289
    SW London
    My mother was told by her GP that she had Alzheimer's, but had forgotten by the time she got home maybe 15 minutes later. After a while we realised that there was no point in reminding her when she was never going to remember. Apart from anything else, who wants to be constantly reminded that they have a horrible disease with no cure?
    What you have to do (as we realised eventually) was to manage what needed to be done or organised as best we could, without discussing it with her, as far as possible.

    If you have to make an excuse for visits to the doctor or medication, there is no need to mention dementia as such - just say it's a bit of old age memory loss that comes to us all, or whatever you think will sound best/most reassuring for your mother.
     
  10. Linbrusco

    Linbrusco Registered User

    Mar 4, 2013
    1,585
    Female
    Auckland...... New Zealand
    After my Mum was diagnosed with Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia in 2011, early stage bowel cancer 2012, she said she didn't want to know if she had anything else wrong with her.
    July 2013 she was diagnsoed with Alzheimers. She was told she had a memory problem.
    To her she does have a memory problem, but things come back to her in a flash :)
    but she is no different to her friends, and its just her age. She is 74.

    Mind you she has a lady from the Alzheimers Soc. That picks her up 2 days a week and takes her to activity groups. Mum has her business card in her purse.
    The Geritrician sent a letter to her address by mistake instead of mine, which she read.
    Dad was assesed by the Memory Team, who also discussed caring for his wife Alzheimers. He also had a letter posted to him, which Mum read.
    Not sure how much Mum reads or takes in, but she hasn't otherwise mentioned it and neither have we.
     
  11. henfenywfach

    henfenywfach Registered User

    May 23, 2013
    332
    rct
    Hi
    I'm my dad's carer and have been for a few years. He knows he has dementia bit initially took it on the chin. Gradually as things progressed he started to fight against it.

    I suppose I can see where your coming from. I've never lied to my dad and always been honest with him..but if he wasn't aware and I was I'd feel bad. Every person is different.
    Every person with a diagnosis is different.

    I have worked out things as we've gone along. If he' gets something wrong or says something that's not going to hurt him then we just go with it. If it's relating to something that can cause him harm then we mention it. The difficulty for us is if he's understanding.

    My dad is unaware of some of his symptoms. We don't remind him of them..but if we have to try and talk him round because the affects of one of the symptoms then you learn to communicate and see the world through his eyes.

    Best wishes
     
  12. Kazsul

    Kazsul Registered User

    Sep 13, 2015
    19
    North somerset
    My Mum was told by the Consultant a year ago that she had Vascular Dementia. She understood at the time and accepted it as she thought it was better than having Alzheimer's. She had seen her eldest sister suffer with Alzheimer's. Mum has deteriorated over the last 3 months and now becomes very upset at any mention that she had dementia and we as a family work hard to praise her on good days and try and maintain her self esteem and confidence levels. There is no point in reminding her that it's vascular dementia that is causing her to forget almost everything, making her cry over simple things or causing her to lose control over her life. She is now so worried and frustrated that mentioning her dementia would now be too cruel


    Sent from my iPad using Talking Point
     
  13. MrsTerryN

    MrsTerryN Registered User

    Dec 17, 2012
    769
    Mum used to be aware of her dementia diagnosis. She has no idea. When she comments about missing words I just smile and say mum you are old and we both laugh. I won't remind her she has dementia
     

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