Early Alzheimer's/Dementia

Discussion in 'General Health & Wellness' started by jeannec01, Mar 30, 2011.

  1. jeannec01

    jeannec01 New Member

    My husband shows no interest in things he used to love. He doesn't
    "plan" anything.......just eats and sleeps and doesn't find any joy in
    life. With all the political turmoil on TV he comes across as quite
    "irritable" about the slightest thing. Does this sound like dementia?
    Anyone have any thoughts? (Oh, by the way, he has been smoking over
    50 years and can't quit) He exhibits traits of Asperger's Syndrome also.
  2. TwoCatDoctors

    TwoCatDoctors New Member

    Thanks for caring about your husband so much and don't give up and keep at this. My first suggestion is to get your husband into the doctor for a full physical and blood work. There are so many things besides dementia that may be involved.

    If the exam and tests come up okay, talk to the doctor about many things, including depression, inactivity, your thoughts on dementia and aspergers. The political turmoil both in the U.S. and the world is upsetting to many of all ages--some don't watch the news or read newspaper for those reasons so it doesn't necessarily mean it is a symptom, but tell the doctor anyway. I personally don't watch the news because I cringe at the death, mutilation and brutality we humans bring on each other no matter where we are located.

    Another thing to consider--you already know your husband doesn't "feel good" or comfortable at all with the TV coverage of political turmoil, so try to turn off the TV now and perhaps read aloud a good book to him or make sure you are watching something else.

    Music is also something to try so perhaps try the music of his era. You're going to be doing trial and error to see what catches your husband's attention and sparks some interest.

    I personally love in the early mornings to rest back against the sofa, open the front door, with the security screen in and listen to the birds sing and they are like opera with the different birds and it is relaxing and wonderful. The finches run back and forth across the concrete walk in front of my door and my one stair and get in the bushes and I joke that instead of "Fiddler on the Roof" it is "Finch on the Stair."

    If you have to get cable TV to get access to more TV programs and thus more interesting shows for your husband to watch, then do it because he is so worth it. On cable TV, there are:

    -- fishing shows (fishing standing in streams, in boats, in swamps for alligators, standing finding monster fish, and deep sea fishing),

    --garden shows with detailed info that men would like,

    --shows on home projects for men,

    --there is a show called Holmes on Homes where the expert home builder finds all the mistakes made in building a home or doing remodeling of a home and fixes them

    --a "Westerns" channel that shows many of the old time westerns (like Lawman, Have Gun Will Travel, Wagon Train, Maverick, and I forget the rest of them Dad mentioned) and it has many of the old time Western movies and is a super favorite of my Dad who is 93 years old and in hospice care.

    --the Animal Planet that has shows on animals.

    --there are many more but I can't remember them and my Dad in hospice LOVES having cable TV with his Westerns channel, his sports games, auto racing,

    --I almost forgot, Dad gets a channel (I can't remember the name but it is connected with Ted Turner) that shows all old time movies and that is another channel that Dad absolutely loves.

    Good luck and I hope this gives you some ideas to start with. Many hugs.
  3. TwoCatDoctors

    TwoCatDoctors New Member

    I saw something on the news, and it reminded me that it might help you.

    I had suggested the phsycial, but as you may be looking for things that interest your husband at home (like music or any number of things), I can then suggest you might want to talk to him about the events occurring in your area. In our area we have free concerts at night in the park and it will be various dates with different types of music from various eras--so people select which concerts to attend based on music they like.

    Also, our Botanical Gardens has constant new and rotating exhibits about the plant life for our area and handling them--and then they have the Butterfly exhibit at a certain time each year and it attracts many people. They now have artists painting throughout the Botanical Gardens and the visitors are finding it fascinating watching the artists paint and talking to them (in was in the news). The Botanical Gardens for a while also had a fantastic exhibit of glass sculpture (I don't mean sculpture of people, but more of a free form movement) among the plants that attracted so many people. I saw photos of the sculptures and they were beautiful.

    The local park also has a free art class from time to time in case your husband likes to doodle or even create with his hands. The park system also has a bicycle repair program that adults volunteer for and then the kids work as volunteers and earn bicycles.

    I have a senior center near me that is for all ages and has many activities including a pool table, table tennis, card games, mahjong, groups for men, groups for women, fantastic day trips including lunch.

    I just hope that if you can peak his interest, that maybe the above might give you some ideas to look for in your area and that you might be able to get him out of the house to perhaps see them. Good luck and hugs.

  4. Janalynn

    Janalynn New Member

    I agree about the depression being a possibility. My Mom was having trouble w/memory/confusion, not wanting to do anything etc. Over the phone Dr. told my sister that they thought maybe early stages of dementia could be a possibility, but let's get her in.

    Turned out it was really depression. She couldn't really identify it herself, they found the right low dose of meds and she is doing much better. She has the normal age-related memory issues but everything is much better.

    She wasn't eating much and slept a lot too - also didn't have much interest in anything.

    I'd have a Dr. check out your husband - definitely.