My mother insists she is sick, makes up symptoms and wants to visit the doctor for attention. What can I do?

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She does have mild Parkinson's but is otherwise has good health.

Answers 1 to 10 of 16
luckyjoee my mom told me she was sick for a long time. I thought the same way you're thinking. Then one day last October she had a devastating stroke.

If I were you I'd just listen a little more carefully, and watch a little more closer.

What will it hurt to take her to the Dr. for test?
Have been to every kind of doctor imaginable. Then repeated same. HEALTHY! She calls and wants to go to the emergency room all the time. So frustrating as she says she is in pain yet doctors say she is fine. Will listen carefully to her. Thanks
Maybe she needs some phychological testing done. Have you tried any of those.

I'm not too familiar with them but there are a lot of people on this site that will help you. Don't give up, stay here, we're here to help you. What one cannot do, another can, and so on and so on.

In other words don't touch that dial dear.
Pamela.... well said. We do need to listen closely. Something is going on . Whether it is physical or pyschological, someone asking for help is in some type of trouble. Even it is as simple as just being lonely or as serious as early dementia. So often even experienced doctors don't recognize the symptoms of Alzheimer's or other dementias.

Luckyjoee: why not start by getting with your mother and make sure that all of her 'testing' and results are properly documented. Does she have a 'primary doctor that deals with primarily in geriatrics? Getting some baseline number/results (bloodwork, CAT, PET, MRI's etc) can help tell what her 'normal' is and if any further tests are done, can then be used to compare.

Are you her only family? Is she alone most of the day? Can she go to an adult center to feel more 'fulfilled in her daily life?" Has she recently lost her husband (your father I assume) to illness, death or divorce?

There are so many factors, but I am sure that if you talk with her doctor (and her) you may get to the root of the problem sooner. Sometimes just sitting and listening REALLY listening might solve some of her problems. I am not a doctor but it is truly amazing what you can learn if you really listen to someone. Validate their worries, ask for more specifics and see what she tells you.

I am not an expert, but like Pamela said... stay with us, there are many experts here that will answer your question. My experience has been purely on a personal basis helping my mother for the past 5 years in the middle and final stages of Alzheimer's .

God bless.
I have the same problem with my father. As early dementia begins "disinhibition" can occur. Disinhibition is a medical term.
My father has disinhabition. He passes gas (on purpose), belches (on purpose), refuses to bathe, refuses too changed soiled (#2) clothing and talks incessantly about bodily functions. I urge you to research disinhibition on the internet. It is a psycological problem associated with aging.
luckyjoee24, Does your Mom live alone? Are her mild symptoms escalating in a way that makes her more aware of the progression of her disease even though the symptoms may still be mild? She may be afraid by the slightest symptom, escalation of any symptom, or the mere thought of the progression of her Parkinson's Disease and might even become panicked at the mere thought which may make her want to see a doctor. How does she spend her days? If she has enough to do or see or sufficient interactions with others, she may be less anxiety-prone. I'm with Pamela that if she is saying something is wrong, something is troubling her, be it physical, or otherwise. Same with attention-seeking. She may be bored and has too much time to think about her disease.
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My husband was addicted to going to docs on the way home from his main docs would say had to make another appointment to see her and I would say you were just there and he would say I forgot to ask her something I had to just refuse to take him to a doc unless he seemed to be sick he just loved the attention.
I would worry about the whole 'crying wolf' thing. What happens if he really is sick and no one believes him, then what? Scary.
Mom just thrived on dr appts, it was like a social outing for her. She'd talk about what she was going to wear, were we going to lunch afterwards, the whole nine yards. I work, only a few people in the office, so it was difficult to take off almost an entire day off just for one dr appt where the dr came in the exam. room for 3 min and rushed out. I finally had to do like 195Austin and put my foot down. I insisted she make a list and go over it all with the dr. to prevent the need to go again too soon. I didn't want to deprive her of getting out but this was excessive. She finally got the message and started being more considerate of other people's time.
I agree with you, naheaton. We just never know. Even well-meaning and skilled doctors do not always catch every malady. It happens.

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