Mom with Alzheimer's muttering and talking to herself.

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Hoping for input on this issue that I haven't heard about before and is starting to REALLY wearing on me. Everything mom does seems to be accompanied by a step by step commentary...(I know I grabbed a water...I'm going to dump this in the garbage...Well, I'll open this can and split it between you two /dogs/...Come on kitty -- eat your food - why won't you eat your food? Okay, now that "x" is out of the way, I'm going to go to the bathroom. I'm going to leave the door open so the cat can get back into the house. Tomorrow I have to do laundry.) It's as though every thought that pops into her brain has to be verbalized/ Earlier I thought it was a mechanism for her to "affirm" a thought in order to hold on to it. But, it doesn't seem to work - her thoughts continue to be fleeting regardless. Is this just another quirky "symptom" of Alz/VaD? It's like watching a movie where someone is unconscious or can't speak and every thought is verbally expressed for the sake of the audience. I tune her out, and then she's frustrated that I do not answer her question that was sandwiched within an ongoing string of mutterings. What I wouldn't give for a mute button sometimes!!!! Hoping this is a passing phase???

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The "going silent" phase is different for everyone. Some just simply stop talking - and when you speak to them, you can tell that they hear you, but just can't respond. It's almost as though a switch has been shut off in their brain. Others lose the ability to speak more slowly.

I hope it's not sudden for your Mom, Heather - I know that would be hard to deal with.
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My mom likes to read aloud - drives me crazy but hey she can still read - the same page over and over !
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Thanks for feedback! I didn't think it was necessarily a "common" characteristic, which, based on the responses seems to be the case. This has become more pronounced this past year. I can't fathom there will come a day when she won't speak at all - and I understand that IS a common occurrence. I'm curious how that "phase" presents itself? I don't imagine I'll wake up one day & she'll be silent. Not sure "how" to prepare for this...
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The muttering and talking to herself may or may not go away. Then again, she may reach the stage where she completely loses her power of speech, and you'll wish for her to say something - anything - even if she's muttering to herself, just to hear her talk again.

My dad was in a NH for a time before he passed away a few years ago. There was a lady who sat by the nurse's station in her wheelchair, all day every day. She would mutter little snatches of the oddest phrases - all day long. She'd say the same thing, 3 times in a row, then move on to the next phrase that popped into her head. Things like, "It's a fair life. It's a fair life. It's a fair life." "Sail me over to my queen. Sail me over to my queen." "Help. Help. Help." "Mom? Mom? Mom?" "Don't take my jack. Don't take my jack. Don't take my jack."
Such odd little phrases - you had to wonder where they were coming from. I mean, asking for Mom and saying "help" - no mystery there - but the other phrases were really odd. I'd love to know what her past was that made her utter such things.

At a certain point, our loved ones with dementia/Alz. lose the ability to remember how to do simple things. It sounds very much like your mom may be keeping a running narrative going to remind herself of what she's doing, or what she *thinks* she should be doing - like feeding the animals, going to the bathroom,etc. Her mind may be starting to become a bit of a jumble, so saying the things she's doing out loud may help her stay on track.
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My mother muttered and talked to herself. It went away after about a month. Headphones. Use headphones with music. Mom wouldn't talk to us with our headphones on. This phase passed, but it sure was creepy at the time.
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babygirlga, I'm not a quiet person per se. But apparently, the constant din of this dialogue (good word!) is striking a nerve to the extent I am sure longing for some silence. I'm finalizing plans to get her into a senior day program - will be interesting if that has any bearing on this dialog. We'll soon see! Also, she doesn't talk to anyone. Hopefully some structured socialization will help. Fingers crossed!.
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Have you and your mom always lived together or has it been since she's been diagnosed with Alzheimer's? Was she more chatty and you more quiet historically? I ask these questions because of personal experience. I've always been a person that loves silence even as a child. I like solo activities like reading, knitting, and quiet walks. I have friends and can socialize wonderfully and loudly with them. But I genuinely love quiet reflection.

My mom? She's always been a chatterbox. And even before her official diagnosis she would recount situations to the point I've had dreams about them and find myself a central character in those moments when in actuality I was nowhere near when they occurred. She also likes to dialogue her steps "Going to get some water.... going to sit in here... going back to my room.... " I either say nothing or "ok".

Most of my mom's closest friends have died. So I wonder if her self talks are a product of losing those who she'd talk to on a daily basis.
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It doesn't seem likely that a mute button is going to materialize. I'd go with tuning her out as much as you can, and trust if there is a question you need to answer she'll get your attention and repeat it. Let's hope this is like many dementia symptoms and it doesn't last forever.
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