Follow
Share

My grandma lives with my grandpa. Over the past few months (around 3), we've found wine bottles hidden under beds, in night stands, or in her quilting room. Sometimes the bottles are open, other times not. We began marking the liquid to see how much was being consumed during specific time periods. Most often, very little to no wine has been consumed. Other times, a significant amount of wine is gone. My grandma has a two story house, and has trouble walking easily. This is a bizarre development to think she's started drinking heavily and can still manage to navigate the stairwell and not be ill from the amount of wine she'd have to be consuming at times. I have read that people with dementia sometimes hide things out of fear etc, and I'm wondering if hiding alcohol is something common? We confronted her and her reaction was anger. I'm not sure the specific answer she gave were the truth or if she were just reacting to the situation we put her in with an 'intervention' of sorts. Could she be going for a drink of wine, forgetting she had a drink of wine, and then going back for a drink of wine? I am so confused if this is a dementia problem, or an alcohol problem.

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.
Forgot my point, if she can't drive she can't buy the wine.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

I would consider taking her car keys from her sooner than later. My husband got lost coming home from the library 3 miles from home. Then our dr explained that with any dementia reflexes are slower and split second life saving decisions are slower. My husband did not want to give up the keys but after getting lost it did frighten him. I was concerned about the legal aspects of him driving.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

For people who are alcoholic, they may not appear to be intoxicated. They get accustomed to the alcohol and it's their normal.

Also, there may be many other bottles that you have not found.

It's difficult to say, except you know she has dementia. I would take it that she is progressing. I know that my loved one would hide chips, candy, etc., in drawers for no apparent reason in her dementia. Once she disconnected the cable box and hid it in the kitchen cabinet. She denied she did it, but obviously she did. She had no memory of it and we will never know why she did it. It's just part of how they do bizarre things at times.

I would immediately step in, because it sounds like her husband is very frustrated. It can be very frustrating living with a dementia patient. They can't help their behavior, it can be exasperating and the other person feels so helpless. I would offer him some help. It's unlikely thing will improve. In fact, they are likely to decline.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Just occurred to me that if she is taking a nip here and there, the wine might impact or interact with any meds she takes and cause undesirable side effects.

Perhaps you could substitute some empty bottles for the full ones and just make sure that no one buys any more.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

She's been evaluated and does have dementia. She's mobile and can drive but we're starting to talk about taking the keys away from her since the dementia seems to be progressing, making it unsafe. My grandfather is the one that led the confrontation recently asking her about hiding wine bottles. He laid down some ground rules that my grandmother consented to. All the times I've been to visit, I don't notice any 'drunk' behavior. My intuition says if an elderly dementia patient were consuming any significant amount of wine, we'd be able to see it in a significant decrease in motor skills and speech. I haven't heard of family members making any such observations, or smelling wine on her breath. Also, I would think she would be sick at times from drinking wine, which she never appears to be. At this point, we have brought her to and from several doctors appointments and it's never come up. It was recently brought up because my grandpa is at his wits end. My grandpa has limited mobility (wheelchair) and my grandma was hiding it in spots she knew he couldn't get to.

We will definitely be bringing this up with their doctors and keeping a close eye on it. I had read about elderly patients hiding food or other items and thought maybe this is what she was doing. We're all at a loss right now for what the root cause is.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

It's difficult to say what could be causing this, but whatever it is would be alarming to me. I don't think that hiding alcohol is a good sign, regardless of the reason. What else is going on with her? Unless she would consent to have an evaluation for dementia, I'm not sure what can be done. Is she bathing, cooking, driving, paying bills? Her ability to do these things should be examined. If she is not doing well, it could be from a number of things such as alcoholism, dementia, infection, drug reaction, age related decline, etc.

Will her husband discuss it? What does he say about it? What about the neighbors? Who is buying the wine for her?

It sounds like she may not be able to be in charge of the household though.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Do you ever smell wine on her breath? Has she drank wine in the past? Does your grandfather see her drinking?

If she's becoming reliant on wine, I would think she'd want it more regularly and more often.

I don't really any other insights; this is kind of unusual, at least to me.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.