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My Mother is 95 years old, she will be 96 this week. We feel she is in the early stages of dementia. We are blessed to have had her with such a clear mind for so long. About 6 months ago after her baby brothers death we noticed the change/decline in her health. Very quiet, not wanting to eat, not wanting to drink water, not wanted to be left alone, tremors when holding items. She was an avid writer and reader, she has no interest in that at allow. She loved going out and talking on the telephone, she no longer has an interest in those things. She likes to stay at home and sit, and sleep, she seldon initiates conversation. She is on medication. I hired a sitter, and I also got her a life alert system. She is never alone. I filed for power of attorney last week. What is going on with her and what more can we do to make life more comfortable for her.

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You could try anti depressants and see if that changes her behaviors. It takes about 6 weeks for the meds to kick in. If it doesn't change her behaviors perhaps try a 2nd anti depressant. If neither works then maybe the loss has triggered some form of dementia. Comfort her by loving her, stroking her hands, arms, back. Hugging, kisses on the cheek, comforting words ( I love you, you are beautiful etc) and just being there for her emotionally. She still has feelings, and I know you know this, so just provide loving comfort. You don't need to talk about her loss. Prayers are with you. I know you will do a great job.
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I see that you are still looking for answers.

Can you tell us whether she has been evaluated for dementia and depression? Is she taking meds for either condition? Does she have other chronic conditions such as diabetes or chf or copd?

You may have some success by not waiting until she says she wants to do something. What if you or another family member popped in and said, "I've just discovered a delightful little restaurant that has chicken and dumplings on their menu. I'm hoping you'll go with me and see how they compare to your recipe. If we go soon they won't be crowded. Would you like me to fetch your sweater or your jacket?" I've had some success with this approach with my mother, but I can't pull it off very often.

She is on medication. What kind? How long has she been on it? Could the dose be too high or too low?

Has she had a medical evaluation since these symptoms appeared?

I know you'd like more answers, and I think a little more information from you might prompt more discussion.

You mother is lucky to have such a loving family.
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It does sound like depression after her brother's death from all the symptoms you describe. The death of my MIL younger and only remaining sibling triggered dementia in her case. She became so forgetful and repeating herself constantly. So, think the passing of a sibling or friends can trigger so much in the elderly; it is quite traumatic for them. My MIL was the only one left; and it effected her tremendously. Medication for depression might be in order here. As Lilygirl said, she is so fortunate to have such a loving family. Take care.
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Something as devastating as her brother's death can cause this behavior. She is sad & grieving & probably depressed. My father's best friend of over 50 years died in December. Dad has not been the same since. His dementia increased and his mobility & appetite decreased. It's wonderful she has such a loving & compassionate family and has been of clear mind for so long. Good luck to you & your mom!
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Could she be depressed, after her brother's death? What you describe sounds more like depression than dementia. Are there other symptoms that seem to you to be dementia?

What meds is she on? Anything for depression?
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