Grief in the elderly with early dementia or possible onset of Alzheimer's

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none Grief in the elderly with early dementia or possible onset of Alzheimer's

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My grandmother died about 8 months ago. My grandfather has not officially been diagnosed as alzeihmer's and does still live on his own but has been prescribed aricept in the recent past. He has now latched on to photographs of her. One as a young woman and one more recent. He tends to talk to them and wants to take them with him as he visits the cemetary. He often asks others if they told her hello as they come in and will lean against the wall to repeat to them things he has just been told. He leaves the tv on for them at night so they don't get lonely and covers them when it is cold outside when he takes them with him. He states he knows they can't talk back but has trouble even leaving the house if someone can't watch them. Some of his children are becoming very upset with this behavior. What can be done to help him through this time?


Posted on 2010/12/29 0:51




none Re: Grief in the elderly with early dementia or possible onset of Alzheimer's

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Quite a regular
Joined:
2002/12/10
From: Rowlett
Posts: 56
Well, I’m not a doctor but I’ve been working with Alzheimer’s patients for quite a few years. I’m wondering if your grandfather is really taking his Aricept considering that he is living alone, what the doctor says his diagnosis is if not Alzheimer’s disease (is it another dementia?), whether your grandfather’s confusion may also be related to some medical condition or some other medicine he is taking – or not! Point is, there could be many factors causing his current behaviors and a good evaluation by a doctor – perhaps a geriatric specialist - would be needed now.
Regarding the issue with him holding onto those photos of your grandmother – it sounds as though this is helping him cope with her loss now . . . it may be seen as odd behavior but if he does have Alzheimer’s disease, he is probably have a very difficult time thinking through whether those photos are real or not! And, this would not be unusual for someone with AD. So, my suggestion is for him to get a thorough medical checkup, have those children that have questions about the disease and his behavior accompany him to the doctor so that they can ask the doc and get a better idea of how to best care for your grandfather during this time.

Hope this helps . . . let us know if we can help with other questions . . .
Barb (4Hope)


Posted on 2010/12/31 9:21




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