Patient Comments: Alzheimer's Disease - Symptoms

Please describe the symptoms you or loved one experienced with Alzheimer's disease.

Comment from: mimosa, 55-64 Female (Caregiver) Published: February 05

My aunt, no real relation, has become increasingly forgetful since my mom passed away. They had been good friends since I was a baby. In the last month she has lost three sets of keys to her house and my father's house also. My dad who is her landlord will not give her another set since we don't know where she is leaving them. She walks around with two hair pins and tell us that those are her keys, but they won't work on the lock. She misplaces her money and we try to help her find it in her little apartment to no avail. She forgets everything we tell her in seconds, but easily remembers the past. If we don't make sure she eats everyday I am sure she would go without food. She says she is going to do something and quickly forgets what she was supposed to do. Anything we ask her, her stock answer is I don't know. Still, she is not aggressive, she has good appetite as long as food is provided and I have not noticed poor hygiene, I do think she doesn't do laundry anymore. She won't go to the doctor and we have no rights to force her, and because she is loving and remembers all of us we are not ready to breach the problem with her. Once in a while she will smile and sadly say she is a mess and can't remember much. I am torn by how fast she is declining, she was the smartest woman I ever had the privilege to know aside my own mother. We are at a crossroads with her and do not know what to do for her but continue to love her and do what we can to make sure she is okay without trespassing into her private life.

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Comment from: Walleye, 75 or over Male (Caregiver) Published: November 25

My father had Alzheimer's disease. When he was in the nursing home and didn't want to get ready for bed at 6:30 p.m., it was classified as a "behavior problem," and he was given Risperdal or Seroquel. These drugs had terrible side effects for him. The carpeting was blue in the nursing home, and after receiving these medications, he thought that the carpet was water and that he was going to drown. The staff would hold him down, and he felt that they were drowning him. Why give someone with a disease of the brain drugs that are made for mental illnesses? They are two different problems. I firmly believe �less is more� when it comes to drugs and Alzheimer's.

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Comment from: pam, 75 or over Female (Caregiver) Published: October 16

My mom has had dementia, going on for three years. I have been her caregiver the whole time. It is very stressful. In the last 6months she has went through combative stages, not eating unless forced. She can remember old times, talks out of her head, sees things not there, she screams out like someone is killing her, she is afraid, she is in pain, her mind no longer tells her body what to do, she begs to go home. She wants to get or steal back what doesn't belong to her. She is now eating soft foods only because she doesn't know when to chew, sometimes swallow.

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Comment from: lovudad, 75 or over Male (Caregiver) Published: October 16

My father had Alzheimer's. My mother cared for him at home for a time, until she could no longer physically do it. I give her a lot of credit for all that she did do. As the disease progressed, he couldn't remember where the bathroom was and my mom would find in the garage trying to go to the bathroom. My mom lost 50 pounds in the 9 months that my father was in a professional treatment center. She visited him every day. (You see they had a long love affair--always) I helped Mom with my dad, and I didn't think that I could. While he was still at home, he only wandered away once. His behavior did change at times. My father was aware that something was happening to him and it bothered him tremendously. To me, it seemed like he would fade in and out of the dementia state. Mom told me that at one time, she found him sitting on the side of the bed with a gun in his hand. My father was never a violent man. He was scared and I don't blame him. This Alzheimer's causes unusual changes in a person's behavior. But even shortly before Dad passed away, I could tell that he knew me, even when he couldn't remember my name.

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Comment from: 75 or over Male Published: October 13

My grandfather had this. I saw him get worse through my childhood. First he knew and loved me. Then he forgot my name and had to be reminded. He named a stuffed animal my name and did not know who i really was. Then he forgot English and went back to Bulgarian. He would rant about the war and how his family is and how evil the Nazis were. He could not feed or wash himself. He was placed in a home and became violent. he would scream and yell and refuse help and he forgot my grandmothers name and that she was his wife. I saw him in his last week. He was strapped down to a bed wearing protective gloves. He did not know language. Only moans. Not a moan you know, but a moan with so much pain and I don't know how to describe it except for he sounded like Frankenstein. He lost all his hair, lost the color in his eyes, he was bruised, and he had a different skin tone, almost bluish. I kissed him on the cheek and he slapped me away. Anyone with this disease or the family of the victim I have the utmost sympathy for you and my family regularly donates to the Alzheimer's foundation

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Alzheimer's Disease - Treatments Question: What stage of Alzheimer's disease are you or your loved one currently experiencing, and have any treatments been effective?
Alzheimer's Disease - Caregiver Question: What tips do you have for caregivers of someone with Alzheimer's disease?
Alzheimer's Disease - Dementia Question: Has a friend or relative been diagnosed with dementia? What are her/his symptoms?
Alzheimer's Disease - Warning Signs Question: Do you have any of the warning signs of Alzheimer's? Please discuss your symptoms and concerns.
Alzheimer's Disease - Home Safety Question: In what ways have you made the home safer for a friend or relative with Alzheimer's disease?
Alzheimer's Disease - Medications Question: If your relative is on a medication for Alzheimer's, what changes have you noticed?
Alzheimer's Disease - Psychiatric Symptoms Question: Please share your experience in managing the psychiatric symptoms of someone with Alzheimer's disease.
Alzheimer's Disease - Experience Question: Do someone you love have Alzheimer's disease? Please share your experience.

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