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She often says she is not hungry, so does not heat. We get snacks as she will eat those things. She goes from quiet to loud and back to quiet.

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Talking to people who aren't there is fairly common. I'm not sure that it can be pinned on stages as much as conditions. My mother-in-law, when she was still in her apartment, would tell me not to "sit on the kids." She had once been a teacher and I'd have to avoid the couch next to her because that's where she said the kids were.. Once she moved to a nursing home (it was an extremely good one near where I live) she had more socializing and she improved in all areas but especially in talking to invisible people.

As far as eating goes, sometimes not eating can come from depression. It can also come from discomfort or confusion. In later stages, it generally means that the body doesn't want food anymore because organs are shutting down. Talk with the doctor to see why he or she thinks this is happening. Your loved one may need a different diet or food that tempts her more. Temperature can matter - she may prefer cool foods or warm foods. You can experiment.

Or, if she is in a very late stage, she may not want food because she can't digest it and her body is rejecting it. Again, her doctor should be able to help guide you.

Please keep us posted on how you both are doing.
Carol
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Talking to someone for my Mom was in the beginning stages. It also is a side effect of medications or uti's in my experience.
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Not sure if I can help but my mum's appetite is rock bottom and I don't think she eats more than 200 calories a day, but she doesn't actually do anything either and seems to be managing. Regarding talking to people who aren't there, she doesn't really do that but she does talk to people on the TV - seems a reversed situation, and she does call for siblings long dead. Swings in communication are comment - mum moves from being very noisy and even making sense on some occasions, to long periods of silence when there doesn't appear to be any difference in her environment. This is all part of the dementia I believe but as to what stage it is, not sure, maybe 5/6. At least your mum will eat snacks and if she gets nourishment and enjoyment from doing so there can't be a problem. Wish you luck.
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Contact your local Alzheimer's Association chapter, they will be able to give you info on dementia. No two people behave the same, however there are stages of decline. It's not uncommon for people to talk to someone who is not there not is it uncommon for eating habits to change. Foods that are easy to eat, finger foods such as boiled eggs, half of a sandwich, fruit etc., are easy for those with dementia and they will eat such foods more readily.
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Not all kinds of dementia progress in recognizable stages. The stages described for Alzheimer's don't necessarily apply to other kinds of dementia.

In Lewy Body Dementia, hallucinations often are the first noticeable symptom. Talking to persons no one else can see can happen very early.
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I agree that the stages and behavior do vary. My cousin has been in Stage 6 for awhile now. At first she saw animals and people who were not there, but months later, she hardly does that at all. The only thing I know of now if that she claims her doctor is sleeping on a couch in the lobby of the Memory Care facility, but that does not distress her or seem to bother her. Those hallucinations or delusions may stay or may not.

Months ago, she also would refuse food quite a bit. She would often stay in bed and refuse to go to the dining room for meals, but now, she doesn't do that at all and actually gained about 5 pounds since we placed her in the Memory Cary facility. I think that the approach of the staff regarding her snacks and meals has helped. PLUS, they serve her soft foods. Not pureed food, but easily eaten regular food that is not hard and is cut into small pieces. She seems to enjoy it that way.

As others above have suggested, I would experiment with some tasty foods and some that are small and easily handled.
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Mom kept telling me she had bugs, occasionally they were worms coming out of her skin. I finally figured out that with her big long nails she would continuously scratch and "feel" above her upper lip. She has oily skin despite baths, the "worms" were whiteheads released from her skin after a bath tightened up her pores!
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