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Sees the words but can't say them.


New member
Jan 13, 2020
My 87 year old mum has early stages of dementia. Still very much 'with it' but her problem is in verbalising the words or numbers she intends to say. She says she can 'see' the number or word in her mind but cannot enunciate it and so jumps to the nearest word/number to it . So this could be a time reference/date reference/money sum, causing her endless frustration in correcting/recorrecting herself to get across what she is really trying to say.

Examples: 'Pizzas' becomes ' those round things', water bill can become anything between electric bill or gas bill. 50 can come out as 500 or 5000 etc. etc. And of course "thingy" has become common parlance in many sentences when she is referring to objects or certain people.

Of course I'm there to give prompts but am often way out in my guesstimations !

Is their any name or aid for this particular condition ? Do any other carers on here encounter this same problem ? Any suggestions for aids or remedies ?


Volunteer Host
Apr 13, 2018
Hi @martybee, and welcome to Dementia Talking Point.
I wonder if this fact sheet would shed some light on what is happening with your mother https://www.alzheimers.org.uk/about-dementia/types-dementia/frontotemporal-dementia.
It's not a type of dementia I am familiar with. My mother has vascular dementia with a strong component of frontal temporal lobe difficulties, but in her case it was her behaviour that changed. She was still amazingly articulate just convinced that her neighbours were coming in and stealing from her. I'm sure people with experience of this will be along soon with their suggestions and experiences.
Has your mother been diagnosed and do you have things such as Lasting Power of Attorney set up?


New member
Jan 13, 2020
Many thanks for the link, that looks very useful. Diagnosis in progress and yes Power of Attorney is set up.


Registered User
Jul 23, 2017
N Ireland
Hello @martybee

That sounds like 'aphasia', a symptom that bedevils my wife. If you ask your GP for a referral to your local SALT team you may find that they can help with that.

When that symptom first kicked in with my wife she did get some benefit from a consultation with the SALT team As time goes by it does get increasingly difficult to understand what conversation, if any, is being attempted.

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