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Elderly parents


12 replies

Twizzled · 17/09/2023 18:05

Hi, my mother is 83.

the last week she has experienced total memory black outs, I’m unsure what to think.

for example, she no longer knows her banking details, complete memory black out. She has called me four times today (twice in the space of 5 minutes) to ask me the same question. I talk her through connecting her iPad four times a day.

I’m unsure what to think. Is this normal aging? It has gone from general elderly forgetfulness to an extreme in a few days. I’m terrified she will forget something that could set the house on fire, unlocked doors etc

it is like a light has gone out.

would appreciate some thoughts from those who have experienced similar and what to expect.


OP posts:
DustyLee123 · 17/09/2023 18:08

I’d be thinking infection. Often a UTI. Get her checked out tomorrow

Twizzled · 17/09/2023 18:10

Interesting, not something I would have considered. Thanks

OP posts:
sadaboutmycat · 17/09/2023 18:12

UTI or a TIA. She needs to see the Dr asap as may need treatment.
Hope things improve OP.

TucSandwich · 17/09/2023 18:14

I was going to say possible uti. Or, the memory decline has been ongoing for a while but you're only noticing now its reached this point? E.g she hasn't been logging on to her ipad for a while, but was embarrassed that she couldn't remember how to, so didn't ask you, but now the awareness has gone, in which case possibly dementia. Def start with the gp though.

Twizzled · 17/09/2023 18:21

Thanks, I’ve just chatted with her and she is in complete denial something could be wrong. She has had UTI a few times so I have suggested GP to investigate this and to mention the memory, she is going to think about it 😫

OP posts:
RedLollyYellowLorry · 17/09/2023 18:22

Has she been assessed for a stroke?

Twizzled · 17/09/2023 18:27

No, I do hope she makes an appointment with GP so that could be considered. I may mention this tomorrow but I will be told not to be stupid and everything is fine

OP posts:
exexpat · 17/09/2023 18:27

Could be lots of things. UTI, other infection, stroke/TIA, or my mother had similar issues when she had extremely low blood sodium levels due to some medication she was taking. She was admitted to hospital for a few days to get her stabilised and was taken off the medication.

If she doesn't realise it is happening, it won't help much for her to talk to the GP. You will have to get involved in some way, preferably taking her along to the GP and staying with her in the appointment, or otherwise sending the GP an email to explain what has been going on and asking them to arrange an assessment and blood tests.

exexpat · 17/09/2023 18:28

(the GP won't be able to talk to you about your mother or tell you anything due to patient confidentiality but you can give them information you think is relevant)

Twizzled · 17/09/2023 18:37

Thank you

OP posts:
greenbeansnspinach · 17/09/2023 20:40

There is something not right, over and above normal ageing, which in itself doesn’t invariably lead to significant memory loss. (David Attenborough !) Vagueness and forgetful moments, yes, but what you describe reminds me of some of the behaviour of an elderly relative of mine who has cognitive decline, and now needs a great deal of support and prompting to continue to live independently.
Het GP should be receptive to an email, or better a phone call from you to explain what’s happening and what your concerns are.
Lack of awareness is almost always a feature of cognitive decline/dementia. The person in my family, who failed to recognise a close relative recently and forgets a conversation immediately it’s taken place, vehemently insists that there’s nothing wrong with their memory (or sight, or hearing …).
you may need to start gently taking over the reins in a sensitive way, and if you don’t already, Now is the time to get a power of attorney in place. Without it, things will get very messy.
one further thought - is your mum on any medication, and if so, are you able to discreetly check whether she’s taking it correctly still? If not, firstly it’s a further indicator that there’s some decline, and secondly if she’s over or under dosing herself that could also be affecting her health and cognitive abilities.
it’s really tough when our parents are no longer the competent people we’ve always known them to be. It’s a huge adjustment in the relationship. All the best!

Twizzled · 17/09/2023 22:06

Thank you, this is very useful

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