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My nan is starting to become forgetful, just the little things, repeating herself etc. the more concerning thing is the change in her personality. She has been quite depressed since my father( her son in law) walked out on us as a family 7 years ago but things seem to be getting worse. She attacks mine and my mothers personality traits and has told is she would rather die alone than spend time with us. I think there maybe early signs of dementia but my mother isn't sure. What do you think?

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I agree 100% with the responses! Any changes in habits and/or personality should be checked out with a doctor. Research, research. Research! Once properly diagnosed, ask questions, more research, get involved with group sessions and take many deep breaths! Take notes on what works and what doesn't help in the happiness of your parent. Things that work will change constantly. Have more ideas in your back pocket. My mother in law loves watching Funniest Videos (and she hates TV!). I record them. She will breakout in laughter which is a rarity! She is housebound by choice and comfort, so it is a challenge.
God bless you in this chapter in your life! Write in your journal! I also draw happy faces in some mirrors with lipstick! She likes that! Sound silly? Who cares?
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Nicola; Brava to you for caring for and about your Nan! Personality changes can be caused by a lot of different things; UTIs, various kinds of infections, dementias of varying types. It's important that you get in touch with her doctor and tell her/him what's going on and get her in for a full physical.
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There are definite stages of the disease. 7 stages to be exact. You need to educate yourself about them and decide whether she has AD or some other type of dementia. No matter what you hear, get a diagnosis. I heard so many times you cannot get a diagnosis for Alzheimer's. Not exactly true; you can and you should. It will be tremendous help to you if she has it and will help you to make decisions on how to care for her. It is also a necessity in terms of obtaining financial assistance. Start with alzheimers.org. Here are some other links that may help you:

alzheimers.gov
www.alzheimers.gov

This website a free resource about Alzheimer's disease and related dementias from the Federal Government. It has an overview of the disease as well as information about treatment options, planning and paying for care, and advice for caregivers. Each section contains links to authorative, up-to-date resources from agencies and organizations with expertise in these areas.

Alzheimer's Association
225 N. Michigan Avenue
Floor 17
Chicago, IL 60601
Phone: 1-800-272-3900
www.alz.org

The Alzheimer's Association offers information, a help line, and support services to people with AD and their caregivers. Local chapters across the country offer support groups, including many that help with early-stage AD. Call or go online to find out where to get help in your area. The Association also funds AD research.

Alzheimer's Foundation of America
322 Eighth Avenue, 7th Floor
New York, NY 10001
Phone: 1-866-232-8484
www.alzfdn.org

The Alzheimer's Foundation of America provides information about how to care for people with AD as well as a list of services for people with AD. It also offers information for caregivers and their families through member organizations. Services include a toll-free hotline, publications, and other educational materials.
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