How important is it to get a diagnosis of Alzheimer's or dementia?

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My dad has had all the neurological test to rule out anything else but his memory continues to decline, short term that is. He shows all the classic symptoms of alzheimers/dementia and it is getting worse each week. What are the advantages of a diagnosis and what are the disadvantages.

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Great article on statins at Mayo Clinic website.
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Usually, a person will start with the family doctor, who will, hopefully be able to give the standardize 'test' which is usually the Montreal Cognitive Exam (look it up on Google-the exam is actually there and Wiki has a pretty good explanation of what it is and how the assessment is done)

Good luck.

As for statins, I've been told I should start (borderline) but once again, my psychiatrist (whom I have great faith in) tells me that the cholesterol standards for starting standards are set artificially low. Don't know if this is true, but given he told me that, I kind of believe him :) I'm one of the ones who manufactures it (thank you, dad!) ...

A person has to be very diligent about exercise, walking, eating well, etc., but I suppose it could be done (i.e., getting those numbers down). I'm going to have to really do some research on it.

I do not I was told that my mother doesn't really need them anymore. But that's because of her age and condition.
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The sude effects of Statins are different for each person. Some people feel tired some lose feeling in their feet which does not recover. People loose their teeth because the statins damage the gums. By taking 2 grams of Vitamin C daily also Citrate Magnesium Vitamin B12 1000ug keep you healthy. Read Doctors research
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Nanny, my husband's doctor did some general tests in the office. Made him draw a clock, asked what county did he live in, etc. Not good results so she sent him for brain scan.
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Where is the first place to start to get a diagonoise.? Family dr or specilist?
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Dear Rothdiane 52. I read what you said about your brother taking care of your father for the moment. My brother was not working and lived with my mother all his life. My mother was getting a little dementia, but was still able to even cook and clean. at 90, but 1year and a half ago she had a stroke and ever since, her dementia has gotten much worse by the day. She needs diapers, she has to be bathed, fed, and never wants to sleep. She sleeps maybe 3 hours at night and then falls asleep all day, her speech is completely distorted and by that I mean what she says make no sense at all, and she doesn't understand what we tell her, not even a simple direction, like sit down. The only reason we don't put her in a home is that she still recognizes us. My brother started taking of her 3 days a week at the beginning and then my other brother and myself shared the other 4 days, but after about six months my brother who lived with her said he just couldn't do it anymore, so he stayed in her house, while my other brother and I are the only ones taking care of her. The reason I told you this story is that I'm pretty sure once things get worst, your brother will say it's over and he just can't and then I don't know what you will do. My brothers and I have always been very close, but this situation is so unfair that the three of us are always arguing and we just can't stand each other anymore. My mother's dementia has broken up our family. Just make sure your brother knows what he is up against before it gets worst.
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Thank God for this site and all the comfort I get from it! Taking care of my 93 years old very unhappy Mum has been difficult to say the least. I retired from my job of 29 years in June to care for her full time, and I'm finding that I have less patience as the days go on. I miss my job and the people I work with, which I'll learn to deal with, but Mum seems to be changing very rapidly. Within the last couple of weeks she seems much more confused. Asking me where "my Mother is" and asking about my sister which I've never had. I've been researching dementia so that when we go to her Dr. in a couple of weeks, I'll know what to expect. She was up all night last night and was very confused about time today.
I think that as much as I don't want to admit it, there will be a time when I can't do this anymore because the quality of her life is not as good as it could be if she was in a facility. I've suffered from clinical depression for many years so I don't have a lot to give her. I really do try my best, but I don't think my best is good enough. I knew retiring from a job I loved would be emotional suicide because it was my happy place. I fight feelings of resentment because of what I have given
up, and then I feel the guilt. She's never been a happy person and I've always felt responsible for her happiness but it's becoming too much for me to handle. My sweet husband has been a rock for me but I honestly don't know how he puts up with all of this! I know there are no easy solutions, but I'm so very thankful for the Aging Care site, it's been a source of comfort for me. It's nice knowing I'm not alone in all of this and I do benefit from all the comments on the site. Thanks all of you, and God Bless. xo
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Lilly...I would love to know what you have witnessed with statins. I am so against them, yet started taking them since my cholesterol went sky high. I often wonder if it caused my Moms dementia.
Pam...My Mom qualifies for Medicaid but they only give 2 hours a day if we are lucky, and it wouldnt be mornings when I mostly need help. Do you know anything different?
As far as dementia/alzheimers. I dont see a diference. Moms doctor said she has vascular dementia, and others, so multi dementias. Humm? I said once I was told she had alzheimers. He said dementia is a sign of alzheimers, so who knows.
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Depending on age, memory loss could be a sign of high blood sugar and/or high blood pressure or some other condition. But then, I'm thinking the doctor's must have done that?

My mom has vascular dementia. When her diabetic numbers are up or her blood pressure is up is when the small strokes occur. So, we try to keep those numbers down.
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Getting elders officially diagnoses can be very important:
1. This diagnosis Fixes their wills and estate papers in Time, legally, to prevent anyone leading them by the hand after they've started being easily led, and,
2. Better to convince officials your elder needs certain services.

Until an elder has a formal diagnosis, ANYONE can divert family assets by simply bringing them to a new lawyer, and executing new documents. I've seen some bring lawyers to the bedside to make new documents....the elder is able to carry some conversations, but limited answers--just enough, that lay-people might assume the person is coherent....when they're NOT.
It's done ALL.THE.TIME.

Driving: Some elders will keep talking big about wanting to keep driving, but cannot manage it. Some can almost manage it, but shouldn't.
Take away the keys!
Same with guns--lock 'em up!

For Mom, it got expensive....the final straw that convinced her she cannot drive, was, she bought a 4-wheeler with a dump-bed--because it was "cute" and "little--just my size"....she thot she could use it to scoot about the property in.
It was delivered, and, she managed to drive it about the length of 3 football fields, negotiated 2 driveways, and the gravel road between them on a small grade....and as soon as she parked it, she couldn't get out of it fast enough--"it felt too tippy", "It was only going 10 mph, but it felt lots faster!"
That was the end of that--it was returned---although there was a fee for restocking it.
More likely, she talked herself into it at the behest of my sibling, who coveted a 4-wheeler; it would have been kept at his place, and of course, he'd use it....
He was miffed when it was returned.
There were a few times she complained about my driving. I actually got out and offered her the driver's seat....she declined.
With one G'ma, Uncle called the DMV to tell them ahead of time, to make sure G'ma flunked her driving test; he'd convinced her that because she was over 72, she had to re-take the whole driving test.
Of course, she flunked it, all by herself.
And of course, they refused to give her a new license....that way, Uncle was not "the bad guy" for taking the license--it was those 'hooligans' at the DMV!
With Uncle, though, it was harder. He was on to all the tricks, and despite his drinking and driving for decades, he managed to keep his license, somehow--he had friends in high places.
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