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She had an eye inflammation, got drops for it, but made it seem like it was much more than it really was. She does this frequently, getting the family worried about her all the time. She does take antidepressants for her depression but have not noticed any changes.

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Ok if she is 80, born in 1934, her life expectancy was 64. "Older than her age" would be "dead". Those depression children all seem to make a big deal of their health, maybe because back then you didn't see a doctor unless an arm fell off. She is bored, obsessed with health and needs company. When mom moved to ALF she was too busy to be sick.
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Weeeell! has she always been a drama queen? Maybe she is just lonely and will do anything for attention. Perhaps she is simply a hypochrondiac ( where is spell check when I need it) all you can do is believe her complaints and get her suitable medical attention. Stirring up the family will neither shorten or prolong her life. one of my daughters when young came into the house and stated that she had broken her arm. I told her to rest quietly on the coach till we finished lunch and I would take her to the ER. She could not eat in case she needed an anesthetic to set it. she lay there for a few minutes then she came to the table to eat lunch with both hands. But then I was always a mean Mum.
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I totally get it. When I met FIL he was in his 60's and I thought he was way older than that. Now he's 80 and acts like an old 95! I think he thinks if he's old he does not have to do anything for himself. He is inherently lazy and now add the progression of the Alzheimer's he's really gotten into the mind set he cannot do for himself. If I would agree to wipe his arse everyday for him he would have me doing it (which he admits). He too likes to focus on a problem and obsesses about it. Right now it's his foot. We have been to ortho...there's nothing wrong but will tell anyone willing to listen he's got a problem with it so he better not exercise or walk. I just let it go and have him exercise any way.
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I would speak to her Dr about trying a different Rx..
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Jdfamilyinc, my mother is 83 and does the same thing. If the illness brings her attention, then it is 100x worse than anything anyone else ever had but if the illness needs addressing and she doesn't want to be bothered, then she ignores it. With mom is is all about her but has always been that way even when she was young. Drives me crazy. And I ignore her because if you get into a discussion about what ever illness of the day is bothering her she will some how turn it on you and then make her projecting statement, " now just you don't worry about it". Drives me nuts.
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You mentioned you have not noticed any changes since your mother has been taking antidepressants for her depression. Perhaps her doctor could prescribe a different medication - some work better than others and every person responds differently to antidepressants. My mother suffered from depression and I do think always making things seem worse than they are is definitely a symptom of depression. She was on various medications until we finally found the right one and she was much better.

The elderly often focus on their ailments and this only ads to their problems and depression. It is a way of looking for attention no matter how much attention is already being paid - it seems to never be enough. I do hope you can find a remedy for this, otherwise it only gets worse. My mother resisted medication so it was quite a struggle. But what a world of difference when she finally agreed. She was much happier and content. I was amazed how the complaining subsided. Take care.
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