I try to comfort myself that perhaps, because of my dads ALZ, he at least didn't have to realize he was dying. A former girlfriend's father and mother both died of cancer, and unfortunately in that case they knew what their fate was and it was very scary for them. What about ALZ patients? Are they cognizant enough to know what their condition means?

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My stepdad just died last week. He had mild dementia and cancer. He was hospitalized for 6 weeks and although he was told his prognosis more than once, he would forget it. He was not distressed when he was told either.

I was with him when he died and it was peaceful. His breathing got shallower and slower, then stopped.

Perhaps you can take comfort from my experience.
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Reply to Tothill

No, I don't think they are aware. Their brain is past knowing anything. My Mom was 89 and went peacefully. Two weeks before her passing, she closed her eyes and never opened them again. Then she wouldn't allow the aides to get her out of bed. The last week I placed her on Hospice. I looked at her passing as a blessing. My Mom would not have wanted to live with Dementia. It was hard watching her decline and get frailer and frailer.
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Reply to JoAnn29

I believe that if a person with Alzheimer's gets to the point where their body is shutting down and they are dying that no, they don't realize what's happening to them. That's my personal belief that's not based on science or medicine, just on what I've experienced. I think they're aware of being too warm or too cold, I also think their thirst needs to be quenched with sponges soaked in cold water to keep their mouth moist. I think they can feel pain as well but aside from these things I don't think they're aware that they're dying. It's a small consolation.
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Reply to Eyerishlass

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