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 Do you tell your Loved One that he has Dementia? 
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Joined: Tue Feb 23, 2010 10:32 am
Posts: 215
Location: Kalispell, MT
Post Telling LO who has no self-awareness of mental decline
I need opinions about telling LO that he has dementia if he has no clue that he is mentally impaired (anosognosia). He is fairly early in the process and was originally dx with Parkinson's. The doctor did mention the word dementia but LO apparently didn't pick up on it. He knows he is physically impaired although far from disabled. He doesn't seem to think it odd when I do things for him that he cannot.

I believe that people who are mentally normal have the right to know the truth. I'm uncertain about someone already impaired mentally. These posts seem to address this issure with LOs who realize they are not functioning well.


Sat Apr 24, 2010 2:18 pm

Joined: Fri Aug 11, 2006 1:46 pm
Posts: 4811
Location: SF Bay Area (Northern CA)
Gail -
Perhaps this older post has some useful ideas:

Sat Apr 24, 2010 2:29 pm

Joined: Fri Jan 15, 2010 9:33 pm
Posts: 3441
Location: Vermont
Last spring before my dad's big decline, I think he knew something was going wrong in his brain from things he said to me about losing his memory. Then, in June when his dr. told me, with my dad right there, that he has had dementia for 2 - 3 years, my dad just kinda spaced out. I think he was so freaked out he just went into this state of denial. Because he reacted the way he did, I never did mention "dementia" then or since then. Right after that dr. visit when I took him to look at an ALF, he told me "when I'm sick enough or old enough then I'll move to one of those places." I still didn't mention the word dementia, I just said "We're at that point now, dad, in fact we're about 6 months past that point."
He couldn't handle it then and he can't handle it now so we just talk about "things in his brain that aren't working properly." He had worked with handicapped people for his job, so he knows a lot about various illnesses, including dementia. But he can't discuss it about himself - too scary! Perhaps some of your LOs friends might give you an idea of what they think since we are all so individual. Lynn

Sat Apr 24, 2010 3:12 pm

Joined: Wed Dec 30, 2009 1:46 pm
Posts: 3213
Location: WA
How about, "Some of the wiring in your brain is failing to send the proper signals"? That's what I used on my husband years ago when he didn't know he had dementia but knew he wasn't quite 100 per cent.

Sat Apr 24, 2010 3:24 pm
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