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Caregiving for Dementia Patients


#1

My 84 year old mother has Fronto Temporal Dementia. I am her caregiver.
Symptoms of memory loss began about 10 years ago. The ability to sort and store information is now gone. Still bright and very articulate in the moment, her short term memory is no more. The affected area of her brain also caused her to lose sense of taste and smell, so getting her to eat is a challenge because there is no pleasure in eating. For her it is a chore. She weighs 98 pounds.

I am not sure I totally understand the difference between Alzheimer’s and FTD, but I am sure there are many similarities.

Her nocturnal wandering for the past year is beginning to increase. Her will to venture out or participate in activities is of no interest to her. Even small crowds, including family gatherings, are confusing and noisy causing her anxiety and asking to be taken home “get me out of here”. She seems content to just be at home, a good thing.

I should also mention that HER mother, my grandmother, had probable Alzheimers (so we were told) It may have been FTD but in truth, the label does not matter to me. I wonder if this will be my fate one day. I am 61. My hope is that since my apnea has been successfully treated for over 25 years with bilevel, I am assured that my oxygen levels are more than adequate during sleep. Therefore, if low oxygen levels are a precursor for dementia, I have hope.

I’d love to hear from other caregivers who might be experiencing the same. I’d also like to know from others about the hereditary prevalence in your family.

Thanks in advance for sharing!