Stages of Dementia.

Started by

Now I know the stages of dementia - I have read the pages on AC and done other reading too but what I find really difficult to come to terms with is that Mums dementia, at times, seems unbelievably haphazard. One day she can remember quite a lot (mostly long term memory, short term not so much. The next day, or even hour, very little about the same thing. Then we have mobility - one day she can the next she can't. Then toiling some days she can some not. Incontinence bladder incontinent pretty much all the time bowel incontinent more often now but some days absolutely no bowel incontinence at all. Some days she remembers she can't remember other days she can't.

If this were a child you would say it was deliberate and I KNOW in my heart it isn't but, just sometimes, I think ..... are you playing me mother? Especially when I respond negatively - OK I know I shouldn't but I AM human and constant criticism does get to us all at some point or another ...then comes out the infamous words that I loathe beyond all others....I was only joking.

I have even started talking to the commode....The commode wants to be emptied - now she knows that - so in I go and say Hello little commode would you like me to empty you...if only she would just once say Jude could you empty the commode or Jude can I have a cup of tea. She never does she never says please and she never says thank you and even though she never will it grates.

Am I alone in feeling like this cos I sure as hell feel alone sometimes. Without you guys on here I would be long gone.


Jude, you aren't alone. We both are probably suffering from long-term caregiver exhaustion. Our minds are still trying to make sense of other minds that no longer make sense. It can be a bit like Alice in Wonderland, where things are real but they aren't.

I tried to fit my mother into the stages of Alzheimer's, but she never fit. I finally figured out it was because she had the classic signs of vascular dementia. I don't try to fit her into the Alz stage mode anymore.

It is so hard not to get flustered and cross. The main thing I'm dealing with now is absolute confusion, but still wanting to control things. She wants me to explain something, but she can't understand or retain even a simple explanation now. So she'll ask again. Later she'll change what I said in her mind, so there is a new "truth." It is very hard to walk this twisted path.
Yes. I agree to all what your talking about. I'm dealing with my 89 year old mother, who has vascular dementia. It's a roller coaster.
You are not alone! I My MIL has vascular dementia in the complete denial stage. Some days she's pretty good. other days or even a few hours later, she's in her own oblivious world. The other day she rolled her eyes at me and I wanted to strangle her! I am with you! Say a few curse words, have a glass of wine, come on here and vent. No judgement here!
I think I may be in a step down phase.
Breathless at times but not at others.
Flushed now and again but nothing to call doc out over.
Even more demanding than she was before
Showtiming to others is less apparent now although she still does it she just can't mask the dementia like she used to
Urine less odorous but hell more frequent like 12-20 times a day - total bladder incontinence occasional bowel incontinence and then again some bowel impaction (she has diverticulitis)
More moody when it comes to meal times - much more refusal to eat
Much more aggressive verbally to me but only to me so thats ok - who would care if it is only me - the doc actually said Ah ok oh hmmm well thats good then....really?
Eyesight diminishing and fluctuating a lot
Hearing not so much
Starting to dribble

Anyone else noticed any of this with VaD
PS that is Mum I am talking about not me!
My Mom is 86 with VD. She is breathless after very little activity sometimes but not others. She is still nice. Although she does do little things you ask her not to and chuckles while doing them. No incontinence as of yet, a huge blessing. Sometimes she seems so clear and then poof - where are we going, I don't remember getting a new dress. We are having a friend take her to PT twice a week and some days she just trys to get out of it, I don't feel well and she'll just go back to bed after being up and dressed. Stopped wearing her hearing aids - My husband is at home during day and me in the evenings. The TV is soooo loud it is stressful. We bought wireless headphones but she doesn't like them. I asked if she would just wear them occasionally on the weekend but then she seems to pout and doesn't wear them. I don't know if we should be more demanding to keep our own sanity. Hard to know. She likes to pick at you and chuckle. I try to just let it roll of but its hard for my husband. She seems to be harder on him than me. You just never know what the day will hold.
GreenJean, the part you wrote about your mother liking to pick at you got my attention. My mother seems to take pleasure at poking at me to see if she can push my buttons. It can feel like I'm in a cage and she is poking sticks at me to see if she can get me mad. Why someone should take pleasure in this, I don't know. I guess it is just a mean streak. It sounds like your mother has a little mean streak. Mine has one as wide as a LA interstate. :-(
Oh hell I think we all share the same mother! Jessie Belle and I know we do and now another to the clan of narcissistic parents. I can tell you it is now ON RECORD that mum plays me up and is highly demanding. The paramedics saw it for themselves and they now know she KNOWS how to fool me. Watch out for that breathless bit Mum drops her chin to her chest and bingo breathless in a heartbeat and she does know, even the extremely experienced elderly care paramedic says Mum knows how to press buttons. It is apparently something they learn throughout their lives and seemingly it does come to the fore periodically in some people, mostly related to depression and anxiety about the loss of freedoms that occur with age. Once it becomes a dependancy on you issue then any fear at all that you might be leaving them (i.e. going to the pharmacy or the supermarket or the hairdressers (huh that would be a first) then up it comes and out comes the poking. now bearing in mind this paramedic also said that anxiety can strike many many times during the course of a day it does mean we are well in the firing line. I guess it s something we have to tolerate because it sure is something we can alleviate totally although we are exploring heavier antidepressants as a possible route
Yes, we all seem to have the same kind of parent. I’m been dealing with gallbladder issues, bedsores, anemia, acid reflux, swallowing, skin rashes, glaucoma, retain water, allergy, sleeping disorder, anxiety, irritating, paranoia, neuropathy, edema, incontinence, constipation, ingrown toenail, fungi issues, irritable bowel syndrome, hygiene issues, don’t want to drink water, balancing, walking issues, can’t hear, smell, see, body sensation, can’t taste food, arthritis, doesn’t want to help herself, can’t feel herself sweating, always cold, don’t know how to pace herself, picky eater, don’t want to exercise, or be active, social, sleeping disorder, use keywords, sign, read lip, a back seat driver, like to take seat belt off while I’m driving, wants to hit me if I don’t agree or follow things she want, when her friends tell her about their health issues, mom would say I have that problem too, hmmm, she doesn’t, she creates her own problems in general, not aware of health issues Diabetes 2, high blood pressure, cholesterol, over weight, can’t make up her own mind about everything in life, feel like a broken record – explain but don’t understand or forget, personal disorder, narcissistic, F.O.G., play mind trip games with 4 other siblings and myself, knows how to push all my buttons. No matter what I do for mom, she’s never satisfied, it’s a catch 22. Yet, I’m the only one that see this in mom, other siblings’ are in denial and won’t support or help, so critical, always arguing with my decisions for mom, taken me way too long to get all the paper works done, it’s a tug of war with siblings’ not on a same page, their very selfish, it’s what they want, not what mom wants, need, honor, safe, comfortable, dignity.
yep betty thats Mum ... not all of those but a lot and some others but hey what is life for except for being utterly bloody miserable!!!!!!! Thank god for this site eh?

Keep the conversation going (or start a new one)

Please enter your Comment

Ask a Question

Reach thousands of elder care experts and family caregivers
Get answers in 10 minutes or less
Receive personalized caregiving advice and support