My mother (76) is having auditory hallucination. She talks to her electric fan. What can we do? - AgingCare.com

My mother (76) is having auditory hallucination. She talks to her electric fan. What can we do?

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Waiting friends to accompany her to her house somewhere. That she has to transfer to her house but cannot tell specific location. We know it is not true for she has no house of her own except the present house of my sister where my mother used to stay. She said my father is there in that house when in fact it's been a year already my father died. Only she can't accept the death of my father. Some times she says my father is there in his sister in New Jersey and he is alive. She always stays in their bedroom where she and father used to have their conversation. She keeps on repeating that policemen gave her that said house where she only and my father would stay. That the title is already issued to her thru the assessor's office...of which i know is not true. Whenever i tell her to see a doctor she refuses ..says she has no health problem. Me and my daughter accompanied her to a psychiatrist without her full knowledge. It was only last week. It is every day that she mentions my father and recalling events with my father. I think why she can not forget my father is because she was only 18 and my father was 25 when they married. They were so loving..no quarrel...talks with all respect to each other...honestly appreciate whatever good things done by each other. When father was so sick and in and out of the hospitals for how many years until his last days ...my mother was always with him and besides him for his food, medicines, conversation of any topic and any personal needs of my father. They pray the rosary every day since I was a kid. By the way we are three children..i am the eldest (57), second is my brother (55), and third ..a sister (42). My brod is in Canada with his family..my sister with her family are in California. I am in the Philippines with my family too. It is me and my two grown up children taking good care of my father til his death and now for my mother. So as I've mentioned they pray the rosary and pray every night. But, lately my mother does not pray anymore with my father...does not like to go to church even when my father was still alive though very sick. My father died last Dec. 26, 2012...since then and until now my mother refuses to go to church and has a negative impression on doctors. My mother can still wash her own clothes as she used to do since we were small kids...cooks rice..water the plants...but after this go and stay alone again in their bedroom...and i could notice talking alone if not to the electric fan. It is every day for two weeks now that she would request us to accompany her to find her house of no exact location everytime we ask where. I told her maybe it was only in one of your dreams that as if it was true...but she insisted it is really true..but she can't tell exactly where. Believing that she is transferring to that house...she was packing her clothes in 5 bags and some were placed in the empty rice sacks. Ready to be brought outside the house waiting her friends in a tricycle to arrive and fetch her. She attempted this 4 or 5 times these last two weeks. We tried to stop her in a compassionate manner. This becomes my problem for i could not be at home to be with her every day because I am working. And my two children also have their own concerns...but we take turn in watching their grandma. Going back to the times when my father was so sick til his death..it was so difficult for me being the only child caring for her with my two kids and husband. Now for my mother...i plan to have her with my brother or sister in Canada or California. The reasons are to have a complete change of environment for my mother ....to keep her from remembering my father almost every minute...seeing their bedroom...the sala..the kitchen and all corners of the house where they stay for many many years. I think all these aspects are all reminders that make her sad...unhappy and keeping silent almost all the time..except when we take her to Malls as recreation or as outlets. I could say that her only best friend was my father. Her friends are also old and just can't have time to meet and have a chat unlike before. So her only companions are we with my two grown up children. We tried our best to show and to speak to my mother gently and carefully so as not to hurt her or offend her. But only i am confused if are we going to go with her wishes when we are sure those wishes are really true and are not really existing like the house she used to tell us a house somewhere..but there is no exact location ...just a hallucination. Is my idea of sending her to my brod or sis a help to her? As far as a complete change of environment and of people around and with her is concerned. As far as i know ...the doctors, therapist, and facilities in California or Canada are more advance compared here in our town. I still believe my mother would be cured and be back to her normal condition as soon as her environment is changed and together with a better medication and the change of family members around her. Please help me what to do for the good of my mother.

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To Moxie 1...thank you so much for your concern...time, efforts and the researches you have done and in responding to my problem regarding the status of my mother. I will take notes of your advises and the questions you suggested me to reffer to her doctor. It would be any day next week that i would see again her doctor for some updates and querries to the doctor. Thank you again and am interested to hear more from you and other readers too. God bless us all always.
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What I am concerned about is your mother's hallucinations, her belief that someone deceased is still alive and her packing and seeking to go home to some place that no longer exists and her inability to recognize that something is wrong with her. All of these symptoms may be related to Alzheimer's or the various types of dementia. There are also 50+ other illnesses which have similar symptoms which are reversible so it is very important to find out exactly what is going on here. Her not believing your father is dead, may be memory problems and her saying she has no need to see the doctor may be agnosognosia, which is something most Alzheimers and dementia patients suffer from. Apidon is for psychosis. Akidin is for Parkinsons Disease and 50 - 80 % of those with Parkinson's Disease also develop Parkinson's Disease Dementia or Alzheimers. It is not unusual to put dementia patients on anti-psychotics such as Apidon to try to control symptoms such as auditory hallucinations (like your mom talking to the fan). If this is the case, for your mother, the worst thing you could do would be to move her overseas to someplace completely unfamiliar. Dementia patients require structure and routine. Taken out of her familiar environment and sent to live in a different country that she is not familiar with, your mother may suffer a significant drop in cognition from which she might not ever recover and this could speed her demise. I believe that your mother needs to see a neurologist for a thorough examination and diagnosis. From there, you need to place your mother in a memory care facility near your home or you need to make sure she has 24x7 in-home caregivers.

This website may help you in understanding what may be going on with your mother and assist you in formulating questions to ask of her doctors:
www.alz.org/dementia/parkinsons-disease-symptoms.asp



There is also a free book on the internet called Understanding the Dementia Experience by Jennifer Ghent-Fuller which I recommend you read as soon as possible. This may help you to begin to understand what is going on with your mother.

The best advice I can give you is to ask your mother's doctor lots and lots of questions - especially ask the psychiatrist if he/she believes your mother has Parkinson's disease and if she also has Parkinson's dementia. From there, I would ask for a clear diagnosis of the type of dementia your mother may have. Is it Alzheimers or Lewy Body dementia or what? The reason this is important is because the drugs to treat the specific dementia depend on the type of dementia.

I did a little searching about memory care facilities in the Phillipines and found that the pricing is drastically lower than in the US and Canada - as low as $1,500 per month for what American's pay $6,000 - $10,000 per month. So even financially, it makes the most sense for your mother to remain in the Phillipines if, indeed, she has Parkinsons and a related Parkinsons dementia.

Ask the doctor lots of questions on the next visit.
1. Does your mother have Parkinsons?
2. What kind of dementia does she have, if any?
3. Where is the best care facility in your area?
4. Does your mother require 24x7 care now?
5. How advanced is her disease?
6. What is the prognosis?
7. What can you do to help your mother?
8. Are there adult daycare programs available for your mother?
9. What is the name of a good home care company that specializes in dealing with in-home care of dementia patients?
10. Tell the doctor if your mother is still talking to the fan or experiencing other hallucinations such as seeing your deceased father as she may need an increase in her anti-psychotic medication.
11. Tell the doctor about the packing behavior as this is related to stress and anxiety and an anti-anxiety medication may be needed to be added to your mother's medication.
12. Ask if a head CT and MRI can be done to get a more thorough diagnosis of what is going on in your mother's brain.

If it does turn out your mother has Parkinsons and also Alzheimers or some sort of dementia and you opt for in-home care, don't tell your mother the caregiver is for her. Identify the caregiver as a housekeeper. Tell your mother she is there because YOUR doctor says you need help around the house. Otherwise, your mother is likely to reject the caregiver. But if she thinks the caregiver is there for YOU, she will be more likely to accept her.

I truly hope I am wrong about your mother having some sort of dementia. Be sure and get all this clarified with the doctor. To me, it is better to know than not know so that you can be prepared for what is to come and act accordingly. Also, if your mother does have dementia, she absolutely cannot travel by herself to another country as it would be completely unsafe for her. I would strongly recommend you not allow her to undertake such a trip, considering the hallucinations and also her heart condition.
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What a sad situation. It's clear that your father's passing away - very recent for you, too, you must still feel it very much - has hit your mother terribly hard. She is blessed, though, to have you and your children caring for her so gently.

In general, such a complete change of environment would make things much worse for an elderly, confused person. I can see that your worry is that she is lonely and depressed, being surrounded by the home she shared with your father and brought you all up in; but I would be very careful before moving her so far away from everything she knows. Has she ever visited your brother in Canada or your sister in California?

It's good that the psychiatrist expects to review your mother's treatment so early on: that shows she's taking it seriously and being cautious. Will you also be able to get her to a cardiologist?

I'm based in the UK and can't comment on how you would go about moving your mother to stay with your sister; but I do know that it would be quite a project to manage. My great aunt moved from the UK to live near her daughter in Massachusetts about fifteen years ago, and sorting out all the paperwork was very difficult.

Perhaps the best thing would be to see if you can get your mother as fit and well as possible at home, and meanwhile discuss with your sister and your brother what the options are. I wouldn't suggest any possibilities to your mother until you're sure they can be managed, but I expect you've already thought of that. Good luck, please let us know how she's getting on.
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To Moxie1...the Psychiatrist mentioned of behavioral of my mother...did not specify what illness..but referring to the result of her ECG...she recommended my mother to see a Cardiologist. The medicines she instructed me to buy for my mother are: Aspidon 2mg...of which 1/4 of the tablet be taken by my mother within 7-8pm the second one is Akidin 2mg of which 1/2 of the tablet be taken at the same time with the first one. Instructed me too to report to her by Jan.4, 2014.
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Thank you so much to conradnote1, pstiegman, and Moxie1 for sharing your time and helpful ideas to my problem. I would like to hear from you and from other readers' too if is it a help to the status of my mother if she lives with my sister in California? Where she can have a complete change of environment and family members and relatives around and with her? This sister of mine is our youngest and her husband and sisters-in-law are also close to my mother since they were kids. Please share me some opinions and suggestions.
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What illness did the psychiatrist think your mother has?
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She dreams of going home and she packs her bags? For the elderly, this is symbolic of a pre-occupation with going to Heaven and joining her family there.
Medications cannot return her to normal, but you can keep her comfortable and safe. She knows where she is going and she wants to be there. Tell her she will go when God wants, very soon, but she must be patient, the decision is His.
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Please accept her world and let her do whatever she wants as long as it does not hurt her or anybody else.
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