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Hello, I am new to this forum.
Posted: Tuesday, February 7, 2023 9:19 PM
Joined: 2/7/2023
Posts: 1

I am 66yrs old, I have Alzheimer's I started noticing problems about in my 50s and took early retirement at 57 because I feared making a mistake, I worked as a social worker in mental health.

At the time I didn't think I would miss my work as much as I do. I miss seeing patients a building trust, I miss the team I worked with. So now I am free... and my brain starts to collapse.... I would love to find a role where I could be useful, helpful and valued.




Iris L.
Posted: Wednesday, February 8, 2023 12:26 AM
Joined: 12/15/2011
Posts: 18707

Welcome to this online support group, James.  There are a few other fairly new members with a diagnosis of Alzheimer's Disease or of cognitive impairment. There are also a few longer members.  My diagnosis is cognitive impairment not otherwise specified.  I have been a member for several years and I have learned quite a lot from my fellow members and I have been supported a lot.  I hope that you and the other members will be able to teach and encourage each other.  Peer support does make a big difference, I have learned.  You can become very useful here on these web pages.


Please continue to post.



Michael Ellenbogen
Posted: Wednesday, February 8, 2023 9:46 AM
Joined: 11/30/2011
Posts: 4499

Do you want to become an advocate for dementia. That is all I do now days and I miss working in the real world.
Amy Joy
Posted: Sunday, February 12, 2023 5:04 PM
Joined: 9/5/2022
Posts: 69

Hi Jameni!


I’m sorry to hear you have Alzheimer’s. 

I understand what you are going through. It’s not easy 

To be yourself when you have Alzheimer’s diagnoses.

Are you doing okay now?

I was diagnosed with early onset dementia at 49 and was only 47 

When I started showing signs of memory loss and mental decline.

Dementia runs in my family.

Posted: Monday, March 13, 2023 6:42 PM
Joined: 3/8/2023
Posts: 4

II,too,am new here. After going through years of depression, then 2016 thyroid cancer,then 2018 breast cancer,then CKD, I thought I was thru taking a beating. Now I find I have vascular dementia. I'm 75 years old, and first showed MRI brain changes 2016. I'm lost. So many potentially fatal diseases and I dealt very well. Now, I'm beaten down. How do you cope with being fatal? I've gotten a will and am deciding on individual items. I hope I die from something else( had a heart attack 2005), before I become mean and don't know anyone.

DDoes anyone else feel so lost?  Thanks for listening.

Iris L.
Posted: Monday, March 13, 2023 7:44 PM
Joined: 12/15/2011
Posts: 18707

Welcome Deebee.  Good for you in overcoming all of those health challenges!  I have good news and bad news.  The good news is that vascular dementia is somewhat amenable to slowing by treatment of cardiovascular issues.  The bad news is that prognosis of vascular dementia, like all the dementias, is inevitable, just a matter of time.

Having dementia means facing mortality.  I had to do it.  We have to draw on whatever supports we have available to us.  I believe that it is a priority to develop a personal philosophy  about having dementia.  I fell into a deep depression years ago.  My fellow members here and my faith brought me out of the depression.

I don't believe that all PWDs become mean.  It is most important for people like us to avoid becoming stressed.  Unfortunately, many are in family situation that unwittingly are highly stressful.  Much stress comes from other people.  This is why I aim to maintain my independence for as long as possible, so that I can limit stress from other people.

I find that it helps me to continue to communicate with new members on the message board.  There are a lot of steps to take to handle the challenges of living with dementia.  The outside world, including doctors, don't know what we should do.  I decided I was going to take control of my life.  I could only learn what to do on these message boards.

I hope you can find some acceptance and peace for yourself Deebee. Please keep in touch.  



Posted: Thursday, March 16, 2023 7:54 PM
Joined: 3/8/2023
Posts: 4

TThank you Iris. Through all my problems, my psychiatric nurse practice her has talked with me regularly, as well as being available anytime I call(which I usually don't). Recently started Do nearly up ( not sure of spelling) Aricept is easier to spell. So we're going to see if there is any help from it. I'm prone to panic attacks and I'm panicking trying to list what I want to go to whom. Feeling very mortal. But I have meds for that,too.
Iris L.
Posted: Friday, March 17, 2023 2:55 AM
Joined: 12/15/2011
Posts: 18707

I'm glad you returned, Deebee.  I have some more to tell you.


Regarding your Aricept: it has the potential to improve your functioning.   In my case, I was prescribed a trial of low dose Exelon patch.  Within a few days I noticed improvement in my speech and in my memory.  I was very pleased and asked to increase the dosage to the therapeutic level.  I have been on this dosage ever since.


Every person will respond differently.


We consider the use of medications such as Aricept or Exelon to be part of what we call Best Practices.  These are lifestyle habits that we use with the aim of improving functioning and of prolonging the early stages.  Note, these do not imply a cure for dementia.                                                                                                                           


Best Practices include:

--taking medications as prescribed

--eating the Mediterranean diet, with fruits and vegetables for antioxidants, fish and nuts for onega-3 fats


--continuing to stimulate the brain; try to learn something new

--continuing to socialize.


We also aim to avoid stress and to get good, restful sleep.   Some members use alternative therapies if they are interested.


You spoke about forgetting your loved ones.  There are many PWDs who never forget their LOs, even until the very end.  Many caregivers mention that their LOs recognize them and are happy to see them, even when they are very weakened.  So you might very well keep your memories of family.


You are trying to give away possessions.  Please put some time into accommodating your home.  You need to make your home easier for you to live in.  There is a lot to discuss in this area, so post back if you have questions.



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