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Is it depression or alzheimers?

Before you even say it, yes, I know --go to a doctor. I've got that part figured out, I'm just not sure how to go about it. My mother is 71 years old. She forgets where she puts things and has a mania about counting her plates and glasses to make sure all of them are there. She repeats conversations sometimes, just not on the same day. She's constantly talking about how the holidays dont mean as much because they just arent the same as they used to be. Or, dont bother going to see so and so. They just arent the same anymore. I'm with her at her doctor appointments but I'm not sure how to bring up testing for dementia or suggesting that she needs something for meds. If she forgets to turn off the stove I havent noticed because my brother lives with her and would cover that up.
PS I placed it here because I didnt see a spot for elder care.


Asked by duckigrrl at 8:14 PM on Sep. 26, 2010 in Relationships

Level 22 (14,298 Credits)
This question is closed.
Answers (6)
  • My grandmother had dementia and I can tell you sometimes the symptoms seem a bit like depression.

    Maybe b/c they feel a bit lost in their thoughts. As far as the Dr's to the Dr before the actual appointment. Tell him/her that you have suspicions but dont want to upset her. They SHOULD if they are good Dr's agree to test her and make a judgment without saying it flat out to her and upsetting her.

    Your brother should not be covering that up, if she is...that is very dangerous for both of them. Is he in denial that anything might be mothers brother and sister denied my grandmothers disease for a long time. That is normal for some people.

    Answer by mom2twobabes at 8:21 PM on Sep. 26, 2010

  • Oh and yes my grandmother sort of did the mania thing...her's was her money and checkbook...she would try to count it and figure her balance all the time, but she couldnt and would convince herself that she had no money and would break down.

    Answer by mom2twobabes at 8:22 PM on Sep. 26, 2010

  • take her to neuroligist

    Answer by mosy at 10:32 PM on Sep. 26, 2010

  • My mother is going through something similar and I am still not sure what it is. I would definitely ask her dr. about Aricept. It's suppose to help the memory in older people. My mom has only been on it for a few months. She still sometimes forgets to take her medication. I put it where she can see it, and she moves it where she won't see it. I really don't think she wants to take it. But like your mom, she misplaces things, repeats conversations over and over, but she also will remember past events better than the most recent events. I hope this helps.

    Answer by amessageofhope at 1:09 AM on Sep. 27, 2010

  • It sounds like the beginning stages of Alzheimer's or maybe dementia. I'd just casually bring it up at the next appointment. They have new meds out that can slow the progression of those things down. So that is hope at least. My grandpa had Alzheimer's when I was in middle school. He had it REALLY bad though. Half the time he didn't even remember his family. I do not remember how it all started though the lady he lived with was crazy and wouldn't let him see us, looong story! What your saying seems to me like the beginning stages though. I hope not! :( good luck!

    Answer by mom2maddie06 at 2:38 AM on Sep. 27, 2010

  • Thank you, ladies. My sisters and even an aunt has suggested that something may be wrong, although my sisters are hesitant to admit it. My brother could very well be in denial because when I try to bring up the subject he shakes his head and comes up with some excuse. He would be the last to want to hear it, especially from me because I've said if need be (and for me it would be a last resort) I'd place her in a nursing home. All of my family is against nursing homes, but if worse came to worse my brother would not be able to handle her and my sisters couldnt for their own reasons. I would be the one caring for her and I'd do so gladly unless her safety becomes an issue. I'm mother to a teenager with autism so life isnt always easy. Thanks again, ladies.

    Comment by duckigrrl (original poster) at 8:59 AM on Sep. 28, 2010