Just had a shock today.

For anyone who is bereaved or no longer providing care.
Somebody I know who is in her early 90's seemed perfectly ok when I saw her in April and I was visiting her in a care home today.
She has got vascular dementia.
Back in April I was with her for about 3 hours.
What is also frightening is she was driving till early this year. Fortunately no accident happened.


Sonja
Hi Sonja

I am afraid dementia came on a similar time scale with my father ( probably quicker ).
He was driving till early 2012 and I then started getting complaints from people on the estate but I think he then realised it was about time to hang up his keys.
He seemed ok otherwise during 2012 except for the fact he was a bit slower.
Looking back he only really showed signs of dementia early in 2013 and at that point I did not know what it was as I had never experienced it before and the doctors thought he was getting water infections.
Dad was taken in to hospital in February and passed away in August.
On the up side I am now glad I was retired so I saw what was happening more.
I am also glad people told me about his driving before an accident happened. I know he assaulted 2 nurses and a police officer but I am glad no long term damage happened.
The 1 nurse did have to go to A & E and take the rest of her shift off.
The police officer was amazed at his strength and he said he could have sustained some injury if another patient had not been able to help stop it.


Brian
Father inlaw has vascular dementia along now with alzhimers few week before we went away all was fine he was at a Monday Club dancing but saw signs of him getting worse we went on holiday and he taken ill while away hard part now he is in hospital and has to go into a nursing home he was a fit man just his illness took hold pretty fast
I agree, it does seem to set in very swiftly. But, also, yes, that with hindsight you can start to see that earlier behaviour was heading in that direction.

The thing is, that sometimes elderly people get an inkling that they are heading that way, and develop coping strategies to compensate, which can disguise the condition for those inexperienced in dealing with it (plus, of course, none of us want to see it happen, so perhaps we go into some form of denial as well???0

My friend's father has mid range VD, and very very little short term memories (cant remember if he ate his lunch or not)(to be honest, he's not that interested either - I think we all pay little attention to things that don't interest us!). Long term memory isn't too good either. She said that the doctor had told her that he'd developed disguising strategies to mask it. For example, if you ask him about something that he'd done in his youth, or several years ago, etc, and he couldn't actually remember, he'd simply say 'Oh, I don't believe in living in the past,' and move the subject on.

I think that a list of 'early warning signs' of dementia would be good - there's bound to be one somewhere, possibly even here on the site! Again, my friend told me that 'inability to make decisions' (eg, about whether to move or not) is another sign of impending dementia.
Hi Jenny

My father developed dementia very quickly but looking back I think there were signs a few months before.
Nobody has had dementia before in our family. My 2 daughters are nurses and did not notice but in all fairness they are not geriatric nurses and they only saw him for about 4 hours a week.
I am not sure if a lady I know who is 90+ is at the very early stages of dementia or not.
Since about last Christmas she may see something with say Friday on it for example a pub menu.
She will then say I thought it was Saturday today. She has never been wrong but she does not seem to have 100% confidence.

Brian