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Mom died 2 years ago, dads 80. Alzheimer's ran all through his dad and uncles and aunts. So far so good. Dad moved in 2 years ago, he is not as active as he was before as he was working full time. Now he sits all day. No physical or mental activity. He has a computer, smart phone, car and anything he needs basically. Trying to get him active, he is now active in a church which is great. Pushing him to get more active in clubs but he doesn't go much (always an excuse).
My wife and I went out for 2 hours yesterday. Came home and it looked like we got ransacked. Drawers in the kitchen open, scissors left out, lights on all over the place. Hall closet doors wide open and dog gate away from the steps with his shirt hanging over it. It was like he just walked through and left everything open intentionally. I asked him about it and he was like "I don't remember that"...... It was within maybe an hour. I asked him what was was ding and he said he was looking for an item to give a friend of mine (he goes to church with) and I assume putting dog food away.... "then I got tired" (it was between 2 and 4 pm).
He has always been forgetful and left everything for mom to take care of. This was totally out of the norm. My wife and I are going away this weekend. We are boarding our dog as he wont pay attention to her. My wife is very worried as he has previously left the oven on and fallen asleep, left the doors unlocked in the house. While he lived on his own for 2 months He used to forget his dog was outside and it would be out all night walking all over his neighborhood or.
I know I am probably blowing this out of proportion but it does concern me. I am trying to get him to walk or get active but he wont. He does see Dr.s so that is good but what else do I look for?' Do I get surveillance tools for the house? It was hard for me to get over the guilt moving him in and my going out and I am just getting to the point where I get out with my wife more often but now it is a different list of worries. I try to let him alone and be responsible for himself as mom did it all. An I try to give him space as we like our space (for now it works). He has his own living area but we eat dinner together.
I work at home so I see him every day all day. Now what do I look for? He does his laundry, drives handles his bills (I watch over them). I know what dementia and Alzheimer is and can see when it starts (have 2 elderly friends who are in the middle of it now). Tiers has been a long time coming but what are early things to look for? Am I just being over concerned?


Not a hypochondriac but concerned.

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You should be very concerned NOW. It doesn't sound to me like Dad should be left alone at all. Your story is very alarming to say the least.
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From your description, it is well past the time to be concerned. The person you describe in your post is someone who should never be left alone ever. You need to rethink your plans unless you can get care before the weekend comes.

Angel
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Lassie, you could have made your point without calling Tgengine a "dummy". There's no excuse for that kind of rudeness and disrespect.
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I agree completely with Windy and Angel. Also make a doctor appointment to have them check his blood and urine to see if something might be going on that caused a sudden change. Let his doctor know about the unusual behavior. It sounds like you could have entered a new level of his caregiving needs. I am sorry to hear this. It sounds like the arrangements before were ideal for the circumstance. Alas, the circumstance sounds like it may be changing.

Could you take him with you this weekend?
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I remember your posts before your father came to live with you, then periodically after he moved in. As I recall, he was more cognizant of his activities and behavior before he moved in, and still for some time after he moved in with you and your wife.

Seems as though things have changed, alarmingly. Memory lapses, confusion, not taking care of the dog, leaving the stove on....these are all indicative of more memory loss and confusion.

Your caregiving role is about to be changed; he needs more supervision NOW. I wouldn't even consider leaving for a weekend unless you can find a respite place for him. It's not safe for him, you and your wife or the dog for him to be alone.
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I am sorry to say but I must agree, it sounds like things have changed for the worst. You asked what to look for. Well since you are home with him everyday observe his behavior late afternoon. Do he become more restless, aggitated, fussy? You said the day you went out and came home to find the mess it was mid to late afternoon. See if you notice a pattern. If so it may be sundowners. It may have been there for a while you just didn't recognize it. This could mean early signs of dementia decline. I would not leave him without supervision. And I truly hope you consider taking the keys are at the very least not allowing him to drive alone. You will have some hard times ahead, losing ones independance is never easy especially for a man. If you must go out of town I suggest you get someone to stay with him. And its time for an evaluation with the doctor. Please let us know how you and your dad are doing. Always here to support.
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tgengine, if this is totally out of the norm for your Dad, then I would be really concern.
If your Dad was always the absent minded professor, that's one thing, or as you had mentioned in your post your Dad always been forgetful so your Mom had to tidy up.

Sounds like your Dad was so use to your Mom tidying up after him that he never paid attention to shutting doors, putting things back in their place, turning off lights. My sig other is that way, too, his Mom and late wife had spoiled him to a point where he didn't need to learn to do anything for himself. That drive me up a wall, as I like my house in order.

One thing I found is that I had learned so much about dementia/Alzheimer's that now I tend of over-analysis what I see my boss, my sig other, my Dad, and even myself doing. Where in reality, it is just our normal age decline and nothing more.
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2hurtagain, Whether you need a referral or not is up to his insurance. But I think you do need to see a different doctor ... one that doesn't blow off your concerns. A geriatrician might be a good primary doctor, and a good place to start. (That would be like switching doctors, and should not need a referral.) The geriatrician may refer Hubby to a specialist, like a behavioral neurologist or a geriatric psychiatrist, for further testing. (How old is your husband?)

Whatever doctor you take him to, also take a concise list of changes in personality or behavior that concern you, and see that he or she gets it before your husband goes in.
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tgengine, please do not waste any energy trying to figure out whether Day's behavior is because of his cognitive impairments or laziness or depression or manipulative impulses. He has damage to his brain. Many of his behaviors are impacted by that. It is pointless and unproductive to try to sort out the cause for each and every behavior. Accept that he is impaired and move on from there.

Because he is impaired, it sounds like it may no longer be safe to leave him alone for an hour or more. This does NOT mean that you and your wife need to be with him 24/7. That would be risky for your marriage and your sanity! It does mean that it is time to start making arrangements, either for in-home help or possibly a care center. A compromise might be day-care center participation.

I wish you all the best as you enter this new phase of caregiving.
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I have some strong feelings about seniors, especially cognitively impaired seniors and diet. Lighten up a little, tgengine. A bowl of split pea soup is not going to send Dad into diabetic shock. Just because you have decided to eat more healthfully (good for you, btw) does not mean he has to make that decision. After all, you apparently weren't eating that way last year, either. If he wants some foods he remembers from childhood (or thinks he remembers) figure out how to make that possible with the least damage. You're not a soup guy, and you don't have to be. Most grocery stores have a good variety of quality soups in the cooler or freezer. Or a local restaurant would be happy to sell some to go.

A reasonable portion of rice pudding for breakfast or with lunch is not going to put him in a coma. 9 ounces a day, especially in one sitting is probably not a good idea, but try not to see this as all-or-nothing. Portion control is critical -- totally eliminating some cherished foods is a bad idea, in my opinion.

You are taking care of yourself in order to be in better shape in old age. Awesome! Keep at it! Dad is already in old age. In a sense it is too late to prepare for his old age! Eating better and being more physically active would be good for his overall health. But it won't change the basic fact that he is cognitively impaired (perhaps has dementia). Eating sausage and potato rolls for lunch is not going to make the mental decline happen faster, and eating a nice chef's salad isn't going to stop it.

Because he has diabetes it is important to help him keep watch on his carb intake. But that doesn't have to mean he never has rice pudding or potatoes. It means you gently help him control portion sizes.
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