A few weeks ago, I received a phone call from someone who had attended our Teepa Snow Event. She shared with me that the event was wonderful and had given her dementia knowledge that she needed. This was an RN who had noticed changes in her husband and had not be able to find answers.
I looked at her Facebook Page before she called me. She shared with me the changes that she had witnessed in her husband. My first question to her was "Is the picture on your Facebook wall your husband". Her husband is 55. My last question was "What do you think is causing the changes in him?" Her answer was Lewy Body Dementia.
After her response of LBD, I shared with her that I had arrived at the conclusion that LBD should be considered. based upon the apathy in his face and symptoms that she had shared with me.
Does he have LBD? We do not know,
A well trained cognitive neurologist will have the skills to possibly eliminate other causes that might be present. When the cognitive neurologist does this, the nurse and her husband will likely know an accurate diagnosis. Early diagnosis is very important. Receiving early and accurate diagnosis is important. This provides time for families affected by dementia to address legal, financial, spiritual and other needs. Acceptance of the diagnosis is a cornerstone to a more peaceful journey. Three other parts of the cornerstone are socialization, attitude and purpose. When these four things are present, the foundation of the house is built. Now, we are ready to begin our journey of living with dementia.
As we travel our journey, there will be ups and downs. I had ups and downs at the time of diagnosis and still have them today. Learning compensatory ways to address losses will serve us well. We engage our brain to find an alternative way to accomplish the same thing. Sometimes this feels like climbing a mountain. We might stumble and fall along the way or we might tear some skin off when we fall. Victory is celebrated when we reach the top of the mountain. We are able to look down to the bottom of the mountain and say, WOW, I did it! The feelings that we experience at that point in time make it worth all the difficulties along the way.
Stay strong my friends. We are in this together!
Working Together, We Will Change the Culture of Dementia
© September 19, 2016 Robert Bowles
Robert Bowles, Jr.