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How can I tell whether Mom has dementia?

Answered by David Troxel

March 30, 2015

How can I tell my mom has dementia? She says out of the blue sky this isn’t her house or that we have people living outside (and we don’t). I see other strange behavior with her. Please help me.

The Alzheimer’s Association has a popular handout called the 10 Warning Signs of Alzheimer’s disease. You can access it at http://www.alz.org/alzheimers_disease_10_signs_of_alzheimers.asp.

Take your mother to a good physician for a workup to see what is going on. A neurologist would be ideal, but many physicians can do a basic workup for dementia.

The physician may find treatable causes like a vitamin deficiency. If it is Alzheimer’s disease or other dementia, you can then make a game plan for the education and resources you may need.

Thoughts and stories from others

  1. April 16, 2015 at 04:20 pm
    Posted by mary

    I guess I repeat myself,,i forget names of people close to me,,people I know,,im having a conversation,and if interrupted ,I forget what I was saying
  2. April 16, 2015 at 12:10 pm
    Posted by Carolyn

    Also get your mom tested by a neurologist for NPH Normal Pressure Hydrocephalus, it can be seen in a brain scan, it is a condition that affects the elderly population and usually starts when people are in their 60's and can gradually get worse. It can be misdiagnosed as either Alzheimers or Parkinson's because it exhibits the same symptoms ....short term memory loss and saying strange things, problems with gait and balance and incontinence but the good news is that it can be treated with a shunt (brain surgery) which can reverse those symptoms.

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