Can someone explain to me how this disease affect people so differently some don't stop talking, and some only talk when they are upset and frustrated( that's my Husband.)Is it the different medication or the disease itself?
In our case I think it is the disease. For a long time my husband was able to talk and join iin conversations. Over he last year or so he has talked less and less. He still can talk but much of the time chooses not to. When he does it is often 'gobbledygook' which only he can understand. Sometimes he comes out with an excellent sentence which is context abandoned perfectly understandable. Sometimes he just shakes his head and won't say word. He hasn't been on any medication for dementia for a couple of years now.
From my limited understanding it is the disease. OH used to talk all the time and tell his stories over and over, and then he just stopped like a switch had been flicked. I guess his word-finding and sentence-forming abilities got so impaired that it was easier not to speak.
My OH used to talk non stop, then he progressed to saying a few words over and over again. He used to repeat an Authors name over and over and when we went to bed he used to say 'what's happening? where are we?' -that could go on for a few hours Then he progressed to saying words which were gibberish-but I could join in Then he stopped saying anything. I think it depends on what brain damage had occurred.
OH tries but often can't remember a word, and can't describe what the word means. He then lapses into nothing. Other times it's gobbledygook, understandable only to him. He does get frustrated when I can't understand. Very, very occasionally he will complete a full sentence within context.
Like Izzy's OH, he's not on dementia drugs any more, although only for the last couple of months.
My husband was always a quiet, gently spoken man before this disease struck. He is still quiet and gently spoken but he struggles very hard to complete sentences and this has grown steadily worse since April.
We aren't a very noisy household generally, so I have noticed that he copes better at home than say, at one of his groups - mainly because we can turn off the tv or other background noise whenever we notice that he is trying to get his words together.
That said, even though we give him time and space to speak, there is continued deterioration in his speech. I notice that he gets frustrated with himself, and know, deep inside, that no matter how much space and time we give him, he will gradually speak less and less to avoid the struggle and frustration he feels. I'll keep encouraging him to talk, and keep trying to work out where his conversation is taking us for as long as I can. They say finishing people's sentences for them is rude but it is the way we get by these days - and luckily, most of the time, I am on the right track in my guesses, which seems to help keep him motivated to talk for now.
I find sometimes I can speak and formulate what I want to say other times I just can't. For me it's not about choosing not to speak, which is as others can wrongly perceive it, but about not being able to. People that do understand, and who I am comfortable with will help me if I am struggling with a word and that is a real help, not a hindrance, as not being able to find a word but trying to adds stress and frustration to an already struggling brain. It is similar with being able to write, read and listen, I have learnt that on the days this is not possible, or only for a limited time, then not to bother or stress over it as it makes things worse, makes life difficult though.
Is it quite different at different stages? My husband has always been fairly introverted, although very sociable and able to join in a debate and contribute humour and argument. He is still in the mild stage, and I've noticed recently that he has started a running commentary on everything he is reading, regardless of whether it's something we would usually talk about or I might be interested in. He has also taken to reading news articles out loud at length. I am certainly broadening my 'interests', like it or not!
Mil always was quite chatty, but particularly over the last few months and more especially over the last week, its almost as though she just can't stop talking. Its a constant babble, usually going over the same things again and again, often stressing about non-existent problems or fixations that something awful has happened. She speaks quickly and quite softly, find it hard to catch what she is saying sometimes so am often not sure if she is actually talking to me or asking for something, or if she is just rambling to no one in particular. She can't seem to process/accept anything you say to her when she is like this either - find myself reassuring her over the same things in an endless loop, and as I finish speaking she is often asking/saying the same thing again