Alcoholic Dementia

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Anybody have their mom or Dad diagnosed with alcoholic dementia?

My mom is in bad shape, plenty of tests the last 8 months show nothing.
Neurologist says mri scan is perfectly normal for someone her age(80).
Blood tests and 3 ER visits for mass confusion episodes, show that apparently she is healthy as the proberbial horse.

I asked dad and sister, who took her to neurologist,, if neuro knows she is a lifetime functioning 95lb alcoholic. They said no, as she's not.
Ive witnessed nightly liquor cabinet raids when she cant sleep since i moved back just before xmas, and heard them my seasonal visits the last 5 years.

Video'd one, as proof, and dad and sister are shocked watching it.

These episodes of mass confusion the last two days, have me at wit's end.

No meds prescribed have been effective, only bad side effects.
And as i type this, she's headed for liquor cabinet......
 
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Realistically, she's 80. Not sure what you can do at all. Is she happy other wise? If so, i'd let her be. Maybe see if you can help keep her nourished.

Frequently they are malnourished with b-12 and Magnesium deficiencies , frequently , older alcoholics will have cardiac dysrhythmias like atrial fibrillation , and more worry some Torsades de Pointes, from magnesium deficiency.

EDIT:

How is alcohol getting into the house ? Perhaps limit it so that she self rations. DT withdrawal is not pretty at all and can be make her quite angry and violent. Not to mention would be a severe physical strain for an 80yo.
 
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I hate to say it, and please don't think I'm being callous, but at her age and condition, it might be that the die is cast. I'm so sorry you're going through this.

We went through this with a cousin of mine who passed away a few years ago from liver failure. She was most definitely a "non-functioning" alcoholic and passed when she was < 50. For the last year or so she was often hallucinating and terrified. I've never seen such a pathetic person... a yellow skinned bag of bones, crying and screaming at shadows crawling up the walls.
 

wrcsixeight

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I just moved x country to help my dad take care of her as the dementia seems to be accellerating, and he finally asked.
My sister lives close by but, well long story.



With his hearing aids removed, and ambien addiction,, he has been un aware she is raiding liquor cabinet at night.

She was only a vodka and wine drinker, and vodka does not enter house anymore. The rest of.liquor cabinet is just remnants from years and years ago.
I am a beer guy and not much at that anymore.
Dad had pancreas issues years ago and only touches some red wine seldomly now. Sister drinks wine nightly.

Mom was taken off ambien when it was said to badly affect women's memory, hers was in decline since 2016, and it seemed to slow her mental decline, but apparently the nightly liquor cabinet raids were her secret solution, and she lost her ability to drive march last year..and that was a few.months too late.as the state took her license after an accident. She was buying what she wanted till then.
 
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I just moved x country to help my dad take care of her as the dementia seems to be accellerating, and he finally asked.
My sister lives close by but, well long story.



With his hearing aids removed, and ambien addiction,, he has been un aware she is raiding liquor cabinet at night.

She was only a vodka and wine drinker, and vodka does not enter house anymore. The rest of.liquor cabinet is just remnants from years and years ago.
I am a beer guy and not much at that anymore.
Dad had pancreas issues years ago and only touches some red wine seldomly now. Sister drinks wine nightly.

Mom was taken off ambien when it was said to badly affect women's memory, hers was in decline since 2016, and it seemed to slow her mental decline, but apparently the nightly liquor cabinet raids were her secret solution, and she lost her ability to drive march last year..and that was a few.months too late.as the state took her license after an accident. She was buying what she wanted till then.
Its entirely likely she started drinking to numb herself from the horror of knowing she was mentally declining, now its just an addiction.

My concern here is that the problem may be more than her. Your father may be aware but does not want to admit it. He may have a problem too. I would worry about your sister. Try and make sure she does not fall into this large dynamic and become depressed or an alcoholic as well. It may be difficult for her to see her parents in decline, and she may intern self medicate with alcohol or whatever is in the house. Not saying that's happening, just saying its possible.
 
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And this right here is why I quit drinking long ago. But to be honest I'd really hate to say it but she's 80 and it doesn't sound like she has a lot left so I think I'd just make her comfortable instead. But how is this alcohol getting into her home? If your father's surprised then it isn't him buying it. Your siblings are surprised so it's not them bringing it in. Is she able to still drive to the store or at least walk to the nearby convenience store and buy it herself and do so secretly? I mean it's coming from somewhere only problem is that at her age taking that alcohol away is just going to be real bad and it would probably only make it worse but at the same time keeping that will also keep it bad. if I had to be honest I think finding something low alcohol to where she can only drink so much until she is full might be more of a solution. Sounds like she's taking something at least double digit in abv so I would probably find something very light and maybe not taste so good to discourage her But making her quit would put such a strain on her old body.
 

wrcsixeight

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THe 'alcoholic' portion of the diagnosis, is my personal unqualified diagnosis, but it fits.

The neurologist and GPs have not been told the extent of her lifelong drinking, which is now a small fraction of what it was a few years ago.


Now, She might drink a glass of white wine, with ice and water with dinner now. The nightly liquor cabinet raids only happen when she cant sleep, they are not every night, afaik. I dont always stay up all night.

She takes a large mouthful or two of whiskey or sake, or.rum, or aquavit, then heads back to bed. The liquor cabinet is just filled with ancient bottles. Dad told me previously he threw them all out, and i never checked until i witnessed a raid at 2:30am.
I dont hve the heart to stop her and dont see the point, at this point.
All she wants, is to be able to sleep, amd since any thing but ambien is ineffective, and that proven to be a female memory killer, she cant get it and dad locks his own supply up.
Meltonin does not help her.

The rivastigmine made her hallucinate and almost every other listed possible side effect. Shes on lexapro now, nothing else afaik.

I came down with covid 3 days after my x country drive, they, the next day, we are all recovering, and this no doubt co tributed to her episodes last 2 days, though 3 days ago she was singing and dancing walking round house. I recommend avoiding this latest variant if possible, weirdest illness ive ever experienced. Her symptoms were mild compared.to mine and my dads, but for the fatigue, but they come and go. I went 5 days feeling fine then back in bed under every blanket in 75f house shivering and achy, then the next day fine, the next day anothef relapse. Covid cookie cough throughout and still.

Dont wanna break forum rules so.lets avoid this complicating factor.
 

wrcsixeight

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i personlly only enjoy beer nowadays, and rarely to excess. Lost nearly 35 lbs since April and my abdominals have never been stronger. Not been to a.doctor.in 12 years, dentist, 25. No insurance.

.

Sister is following mom but only red wine afaik. Were are not really close anymore.
Her boy friend,...functioning alcoholic....nicest guy in the world, but his days off.........holey carp....hammered by noon.

Dad drinks seldom now. He is still mentally sharp, but unconfrontational in extreme...

I am not sure how the hard alcohol has been replenished. Could be what sis's boyfriend leaves behind.
The stores in walking distance that sold liquor, are no more,.and she cant drive anymore.

Ive been on other side of country since early April through Dec 23, and dont tough the hard stuff anymore, just beer. 5.0% or less.

Id likento help slow her decline, and be able to treat her episodes, somehow. Docs say no sedatives like xanax or valium.
I asked her earlier tonight, mid panic ultra confusion episode, holding her hand and humming some Pavarotti, anything in the world you want right now, what is it, she said she just wants to be able to sleep.

Wine, sake?

Nope,.sleeping pills.

I gave her a placebo, 81mg bayer, said it was an ambien and not to tell dad. Didnt work, she just had two shots of sake, and is now snoring......

I mean whe she is institutionalised.in near future, they are going to sedate her, why the eff wont docs allow us to sedate her during these episodes now dangnabit.
Her brain is already mush,she is suffering, and just wants to sleep through the worst of it.
 

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Go in the liquor cabinet and start slowly taking bottles out, and pouring others out so it empties faster. Eventually it'll be empty, just without her consuming it all. I don't think she'll notice it happened either.
 
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I've never heard of alcoholic dementia but I know some people who it would fit both in their habits and memory. Sorry I can't offer any more advice but I agree that another doctor visit is in order for sure. Doctors can't accurately diagnose prople without history and lifestyle info which in this case is probably not accurate. Limiting the alcohol in the house a little at a time may help the situation but I wouldn't try going cold turkey.
 

wrcsixeight

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Alcohol limiting, at this point, does seem like closing barn doors after the horses are long gone.

Sleep is important too.
I need.to get some.myself now.
Today was exhausting, frustrating, depressing in the extreme.
 
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