1. MrsB911

    MrsB911 Registered User

    Aug 12, 2015
    13
    My mother in law was diagnosed with vascular dementia about two years ago but was not given any medication for the condition.

    We have noticed recently a decline in her condition, she is not making sense a lot, especially on the telephone and is increasingly confused by conversations or day to day tasks. We believe the condition to have worsened and believe she is developing anxiety alongside the dementia.

    We are trying to encourage my father in law to take her back to the doctors to seek further advice as the condition has worsened but I think because no medication was originally given and the general consensus after the first diagnosis was that nothing can be done, he is reluctant to.

    I was wondering what peoples experience with this was? Is it worth it?

    Also my father in law needs some rest bite care as we are concerned for his health and I personally need some education on how to help her as this progresses.

    Now the condition has got worse, what do we do now?
     
  2. karaokePete

    karaokePete Registered User

    Jul 23, 2017
    4,830
    N Ireland
    A visit to the GP is a wise suggestion by you.

    There aren't any specific medications for vascular dementia and that would be why none was prescribed at diagnosis. However, specific symptoms can be medicated and depression and anxiety are common bedfellows of dementia. The GP may be able to prescribe something to help. Your GP may also be able to refer you to Social Services and start the ball rolling for needs assessments for both your parents in law.

    You appear to be seeing the stepped decline that is typical of vascular dementia. However, something like an infection can also cause a downturn. Once again, the GP could check for that and help with treatment if anything is found.
     
  3. MrsB911

    MrsB911 Registered User

    Aug 12, 2015
    13
    Thank you for your reply. When you mention social services and needs assessments. One of my MIL’s biggest fears is that she will be taken into a care home. It’s why getting her to the doctors is such a problem for us. What would the needs assessments and social services involvement mean for her?

    I’ve heard that vascular dementia has this plateau where they get worse in stages. I wasn’t aware infections and illness could also cause this. Thank you for the advice.
     
  4. Louise7

    Louise7 Registered User

    Mar 25, 2016
    1,065
    Social services want to keep people in their own homes for as long as possible, to prevent them going into a care home. The assessment will establish what help can be provided so will include things like carers coming in to help, day centres, equipment to help with safety etc. They can also conduct a carers assessment for your FIL to identify any needs for him, such as respite. Getting the right care/help in at an early stage is likely to help your MIL to stay at home longer. This factsheet explains the assessment process: https://www.alzheimers.org.uk/get-s...assessment-care-support-england#content-start
     
  5. Sirena

    Sirena Registered User

    Feb 27, 2018
    1,414
    Female
    To add to what Louise has said, there is no way SS will want to move your mother into a care home, they will aim to keep her at home as long as possible (and even beyond that). So please don't worry about that. Do your inlaws have money to pay for their own care (more than £23k in savings)? If so, SS will still do the needs assessment but they won't give any practical help, they will need to source care themselves.

    By the way is your MIL claiming Attendance Allowance? It isn't means tested, there is a lengthy form to fill in but it is worth having (I put it off for some time because of the form-filling, but wish I hadn't). Your FIL can fill it in and then your MIL can sign it.

    https://www.gov.uk/attendance-allowance

    The GP may be able to offer some medication to help with the anxiety. I am not sure if he would prescribe it himself or refer you to another doctor, but it could help. It's quite common for people with dementia to become anxious.
     
  6. MrsB911

    MrsB911 Registered User

    Aug 12, 2015
    13
    Thanks for your reply. That’s really helpful.

    They aren’t claiming anything extra for anything at the moment. I think they are a little confused with the forms but I’m happy to help with that. I’ll perhaps suggest that to my FIL and help him complete that then. Thank you.

    I think the anxiety medication is very much needed. She’s very worried and stressed a lot now and finds herself shaking in the morning which I think is almost like a panic attack symptom.
     
  7. Sirena

    Sirena Registered User

    Feb 27, 2018
    1,414
    Female
    Definitely worth seeing the GP, who will hopefully be able to help or refer them to someone who can.

    If you ring the DWP and ask for the AA forms, they will then backdate the claim to the date you called them. I found it very straightforward when I finally go around to doing it! You need to be very 'basic' when filling in the forms and give details of absolutely everything your MIL needs help with - and 'help' includes just prompting her to do things, or supervising. Some examples of things to include here

    https://www.ageuk.org.uk/information-advice/money-legal/benefits-entitlements/attendance-allowance/

    It is a very 'under-claimed' allowance apparently, which is a shame.
     

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