Is my Mom going crazy or are we? -

Is my Mom going crazy or are we?


My oldest sister is currently caring for our mother in her home. My mom has recently become obsessed about bugs. She was in the hospital not long ago and said she saw bed bugs in the bed. My nephew was there with her. She tells everyone that she showed him the bugs. He says that never happened. She got so upset at this situation that she insisted that I take her to live with my other sister. I did this a few weeks ago.
Now she's calling me crying that she can't stay there because there are bugs everywhere. She said they are crawling everywhere all over clothes, her, the floor. Nobody in the house has seen these bugs. She caught some in jars but nothing is there. She becomes belligerent and curses at us for not seeing them.
We are at our wits end. I think something deeper is wrong but I don't know how to find out what and then talk to my siblings about it.

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The bugs are probably specks on the retina caused by small strokes. They are real to her. Play along and kill the bugs, reassure her. Then ask the MD about medications to treat anxiety and fear.
Helpful Answer (1)

Stoss, have your Mom also check by an eye doctor. As we get older we get what are called eye "floaters" which are very common and are harmless.... these are black specs that float around inside the eye.

Usually our brain will get use to these specs and not notice them but with dementia maybe that doesn't happen and your Mom is really believing she is seeing bugs. Best thing to do is pretend that you see these bugs, too... this will hopefully calm her down until she asks for the pest control to come out.
Helpful Answer (1)

This is fairly common. Sometimes it is caused by urinary tract infection. Other times it's caused by macular degeneration. Other times it caused by problems in the brain or the psychosis that can accompany depression. But your mother probably is telling the truth that she is seeing bugs. My mother went through this the first time she had a bladder infection. I agree with sunnygirl to let your mother's doctor know about it so he/she can figure out what might be wrong and try to find some relief for her. I hope it is something simple that can be cleared up easily.
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Your profile says that your mom has Alzheimers. I would immediately contact her doctor. Hallucinations and delusions are common with AD, but she needs medical attention immediately. It's extremely mentally painful to be that afraid. She may need tests and/or medication to bring her relief. Nobody knows why some patients suffer with some symptoms, but I would just seek medical care immediately to bring her relief. Trying to convince her the bugs are not there is not helpful and a waste of time.
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