Further to my posts over the last few days about the relative with dementia today myself and another family member went to visit them in their own home.
Things have degraded further as upon our arrival she was clearly distressed and confused. She had been scratching her skin and so her husband was forced to put plasters on her. This was distressing her. It was also upsetting her because the marks had bled into the bedding during the night and she felt as though she was becoming a problem for people.
Things really broke down further when we saw the first cracks in her long term memory. Up to now it had only been the short term memory that had been affected. She took out her wedding album and on the whole was pretty good however as she progressed through the album she failed to recall the people in the photos. When told the wrong name by her husband (who in his defence was looking at it upside down) she swiftly agreed before he realised his mistake.
This has been a common theme in her dementia so far. She has tried to hide the inappropriate challenges she makes towards people by saying “only joking”, she has hidden around the corners of doors to listen out if people are speaking about her and she had acted swiftly when someone corrects her by saying “I knew that already”.
The moods can change by the second and she can sulk and then become extremely angry. She experiences great moments of joy remembering the past and laughter.
This disease is acting so swiftly that making plans as we did today just seemed so foolish. Perhaps it is hope? Perhaps it is just trying to be brave.