My mother has been very active and mobile until about 1 year ago. Her memory is bad; she can hardly walk because of swelling in her legs and ankles. She is very mean to my father and says very hurtful things. I took her to her Dr. and he said 'there is no set testing for dementia'. SO, what do we do now? My dad is at his witts end and she has been saying very hurtful things and now helping in any way with household work or cooking. She basically just sits.

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Please take the time to look up this article on dementia. It will tell you much about how dementia affects the mind. Do a google search on this article:

Understanding the Dementia Experience by Jennifer Ghent-Fuller, B.A., R.N., M.Sc.N.

The information it contains is invaluable and will help you understand what is going on. Talk to a SPECIALIST that deals with dementia conditions.

Please understand that if she is having problems with her memory its not that she doesn't want to help, but perhaps she cannot remember HOW to do things! Sometimes this behavior presents as someone being MEAN, but in reality it their inability to know WHAT to do!

Thank you all so much for the advice. I have been trying to decide when to talk to her and I think it's this week. I need to give my dad a break and maybe she can see that we're just concerned about her. Thanks again!

I would suggest you try a different doctor. There are things a neurologist can test to see if there are changes in your mother's brain. There are also other conditions that might be causing your mother to behave in an unusual way. I am assuming your doctor checked her for heart issues or possible infections? When I took my mother to the doctor I had to really be specific about her behavior because I found he kept trying to pawn it off on "just getting older". Once I got specific he realized that the behaviors she was demonstrating were possibly related to some type of disorder. Once the neurologist did an assessment and an MRI along with a brain scan he found that she did indeed have some brain shrinkage and was displaying signs of Primary Progressive Aphasia. Good luck and hang in there!

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