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Hello everyone! My father was diagnosed with early stages of dementia a few months ago and I would really like some advice that I can share with my mom. My mom is his full time caregiver and is in complete denial that he is in the early stages of Dementia/Alzheimer's. Some days he acts completely normal and other days he acts helpless and does not communicate. On Mother's Day he didn't talk to anyone and just sat in one seat the entire time while the rest of our family moved around and talked with everyone else. He also rubs his hands a lot and picks at his head where he forms scabs and infections. They can't heal because he is constantly picking at his head. He stays up really late at night (2 in the morning) and doesn't get out of bed until 1 pm which is something he never used to do. Dad doesn't do anything anymore and can barely take care of himself. Mom says that he is lazy, but I don't know if she's right. He remembers names and places pretty well, but he acts so feeble that it kills my mom. He has been retired for almost 8 years and literally took the term "retirement" very seriously lol. My mom doesn't know how to help him because he acts so normal some days, but on other days it's like he is a different person. We want to help him in any way we can, but we don't know where to start or who to talk to. I think he is also experiencing some form of anxiety because when he is around a lot of people it's like he shuts down completely and gets nervous. Any advice would be greatly appreciated!! Also, I don't live at home anymore so it's hard for me to help in the way I think is best.

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Thank you for the replies! I try and get mom out of the house to just shop, eat, catch a movie, or go for a walk. She retired for the second time not too long ago to take care of dad full time. Before dad retired he went to the doctor for what he thought was the flu and the doctors found a huge abdominal aneurysm. They successfully operated on him, but he wasn't the same after that. He retired shortly after and just spends the rest of his days at home or with mom. I'll definitely read the articles about Alzheimer's and Dementia though. Thanks again
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jlewis, I can understand the denial part by a spouse, my Mom was that way when my Dad had a heart attack. She would get upset with us if we even mentioned it. She was from a generation where she look care of house, home, and hubby, that was her full time job. She thought people would think she wasn't taking care of her husband if he had a heart attack. What would the neighbor's think :0

Arm load yourself with as much information as you can about Dementia. Go to the blue bar near the top of the page... click on SENIOR LIVING... now click on ALZHEIMER'S CARE... scroll down to the articles. Since Alzheimer's is similar to Dementia, this information is very helpful. Plus reading all the forums here.

Sometimes I think that people retire too early, if I remember your Dad is in his late 70's... or if they retire they don't have plans on what to do to keep themselves busy. Since my Dad didn't want to do household chores to help my Mom, my parents did volunteer work when my Dad retired at 65 and they kept that up into their late 80's and early 90's.

It's interesting, Dad got to "retire" but Mom kept her full time job of being a housewife right up to 98 years old. Then she dropped from exhaustion.
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Avoid noisy family gatherings. So for Fathers' Day, have family visit him in small groups and limit their collective presence to an hour.
Be sure he sees the MD every three months and they check meds and bloodwork.
Mom knows full well he is not right, but the old school wives will not admit it to you or even themselves. Play along with that, but keep a watchful eye over both of them. Make sure mom gets a day off each week, out of the house, out to lunch and the beauty parlor or a movie. Her health is at as much risk as his.
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