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Recently she has begun telling stories. Some are rather concerning. They change and morph often. Anyone out there that can provide me with advise on how to decipher truth from fantasy? What evaluations/medical help should I be seeking? Neurologist appointment in 2 weeks.

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Thank you so much everyone! Very helpful, I appreciate you taking the time to answer my question and share your stories. All the best to you and yours!!
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Mom's doctor approved AZO strips to check for UTI's. You can get them at Walmart and do it yourself. They will save your sanity.
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My husband who is 72 (im 52) keeps asking about the baby. Everyday and before bed, he wants to know how the baby is and where's the baby? I say whose baby and he'll always answer our baby, like I'm nuts or something.
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Moecam, "Chinese menu memories" -- that is PERFECT!
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I think sometimes they are talkin about the past and it's hard to understand what they are talking about. Because they talk about it like it was now. Sometimes they will put the past and present together in one story If I were to guess, I would say they live more in their past, and they can't differentiate between the two. Maybe thy feel safer in that world.
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My mother is bipolar and most likely has some dementia. She takes antipsychotic meds but she still experiences a manic state every five months or so during which time she tells some pretty wild stories. Sometimes the same ones are repeated and tweaked, and other times new ones are added. The topics range from stories about rape and incest to abuse to more general ones about her health. She'll refuse to wear her hearing aids during this period and says that she can't see (even though her vision is checked twice a year and she'll read the entire newspaper). She can come across as being very believable. She lives in an assisted living facility and the staff is aware of her situation. I used to get upset and correct her, but this has gone on for so long that now I just listen and wait until it's over. I realize that she's had good medical care and that there's no panacea for everything.
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My mom did/does what I called 'Chinese menu' memories ... that is something from column a, column b, column c = a new memory

For example when we were in car she came out with 'your father is such a bastard he never even went to his own brother's funeral' - to which I responded that 'yes he did, so did you [mom] & I know that because I was there & not only that you [mom] did a reading at funeral' which was end of that

However a few years earlier she started saying in April that when she was 8 1/2 months pregnant with me that dad's brother hit her knee [like you would to a friend] & left mark that lasted 2 days ... by August the same story was that the mark lasted over 2 weeks with bruising & she nearly had a miscarriage [not possible at that gestation just premature labour but that didn't happen] - so those old memories are suspect at best -

I actually did a small test on mom by bringing something to her saying that she asked for it - upon reflection she 'remembered' asking for it - but she never had so thereafter I couldn't count any 'memory' she had as I basically 'planted' a memory in her

Good luck many of us have this issue - document where you can - use 'video' on cellphone which will give actions & words - especially when the story escalates - this will give you the peace of having your word taken seriously
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I agree with the others in that a UTI would be the first thing to check. My mom lives with me and I would say she is also in the later stages of ALZ. She is not known for telling stories really, she just thinks there are people in the room, a man is going to kill her, different things like that. Mom has been on a maintenance antibiotic due to constant UTI's so even though I take urine samples in, it's more for my own piece of mind. I don't always want to accept the next stage of the disease but with that said, it just takes time to wrap my head around the next stage. Best of luck. Remember to take care of yourself first and foremost. You need to do that so that you can continue to love and take care of your mom. Stay strong.
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I understand nursing homes are using vitamin c for UTI's with success. I've been doing the same with my mother and it seems to be working.
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My husband would tell anyone who would listen that our son and I were having a insidious affair. Our grown son lives with us to help care for him. So sicking and embarressing. Antipsychotic medication really helped. He still lives at home for now.
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My Mom had this on and off several times for 5 years before she passed away. Sometimes they were UTI's and sometimes it was from antibiotics for the UTIs. Several times in the last year and a half she had delirium and this was particularly scary. How can you tell if it is end of life symptoms because of hallucinations or if it is just a UTI? My first advice would be to always check if there is a UTI. If prone to UTIs cranberry helped somewhat in my Mom's case.
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Can't be said enough !!! Check for UTI's, ect.
I lost my Mother 18 months ago, after 2 1/2 yrs of dilutions and hallucinations. MIL has had several episodes in the past 2 years. Each time was related to UTI's.
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Whatever stories she is telling you, of course, are not credible. If some of the talk is incredulous, you should take it for what it's worth. Obviously, there may be times when she may say something akin to "I'm in tremendous pain." That I would look into by taking her to the doctor or ER if it is deemed by you to be urgent.
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My husband so far only tells strange stories that are harmless. Some nave disappeared, only to be replaced with others. As long as they stay at this level, I can cope. Hope you get some answers to your problem.
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With a UTI my mother will hallucinate. Although, with Alz so advanced, this just might be her "reality". So sad. But do have her checked. She's probably miserable.
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Does your mother have a caregiver? Do you live with her? Because if she says something plausible like there are mice in the kitchen, or there is a mean dog in the next yard barking at her, that can be checked out, you can tell those are truthful stories. But if she says there are little people living in the closet, or the Kardashians are coming to dinner, or she needs a ride downtown to her office job...those stories are obviously fantasies. (I heard some doozies from my mother, who used to call me at 2 a.m. and ask me to go pick up her mother at the farm! and many many other wack things. I kind of miss that now.) My mother would ask where so-and-so was, or where my father went, and her caregiver would say 'everyone is where they are supposed to be', which satisfied her for quite a while. Mom had Lewy Body dementia and hallucinated for the last years of her life. Luckily, nothing too distressing, she was more puzzled than disturbed.
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****what someone posted earlier- DEFINELY have your parent checked for a UTI. That can cause immediate delusions in the elderly.
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My mother has dementia too. I used to frustrate myself trying to tell fact from fiction. If the stories are not harmful to herself or anyone else I just go with the flow. Trying tell a dementia patient how the story really goes or telling them it's not true can make them anxious or angry. My mom will sometimes forget that she just ate. Sometimes I remind her she ate and other times I give her a really small plate to satisfy her but not cause a belly ache. It's a tough position you're in. Hang in there. I won't say it gets easier but you do become more accustomed to the behavior.
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We were investigated by the state for elder abuse due to the stories my mother was telling people at church. Needless to say, it did not take the investigator 15 minutes to realize that Mom is off her nut. She was telling people we were hitting her when she was the one hitting and kicking us. She told people we were only feeding her once a day, that we fed her the same thing every day, that my husband was having relations with a strange woman in the driveway every night. When she finally totally flipped out and tried to smuggle a steak knife into her room, and had removed a switch cover to unplug her clock, we took her to the ER where she told the nurse my husband had raped her. They took her off her anti anxiety medication and switched her to an anti psychotic and she is doing much better. She still tells folks we aren't feeding her but the other story she tells is about my brothers killing snakes in the front yard. So things are better, no violence, no sex. 👍🏻👍🏻 Sometimes the medication makes all the difference!
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Since my mom's move to a memory care facility this year I've noticed some commonality in stories - some folks do not see objects in the correct manner either and they can get scared easily

A usual story involves someone stealing from them or worst hitting them or threatening them
When my mom is super agitated (Uti) she will say that if she doesn't do as she's told they will kick her or beat her - or throw coffee on her

In earlier stages some of their stories almost sound plausible so it is hard to decipher truth from fiction unless you're hands on and know exactly what's going on
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I'd take notes so you can share your observation with her doctor. You might check with your primary immediately, just to rule out a UTI or medication problem. And change in mental status should be reported to her doctor. If she's overly anxious, he may prescribe something for anxiety.


Telling strange stories isn't that uncommon with dementia. I would try to comfort her if the stories are troubling to her and just listen and smile if they are harmless. Obviously, if she is saying that she is being harmed or neglected in some way, I would confirm that her story is not true. She lives in the home, right? I'd check to ensure that she is safe and protected and is being well cared for.

Some people say that someone broke into their house and stole from them, but that is usually easy to confirm. Other stories may be more difficult to check out, like things that happened long ago. I'd use my own discretion on a case by case basis.
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