How can I handle my husand's memory issues?

2 answers | Last updated: Sep 17, 2016
Nursejen007 asked...

my husband enjoys evening tv shows but remembers none of the content when asked, and also enjoys cooking but sometimes forgets how to make simple dishes now and seemingly avoids the kitchen to the point of intense hunger at which point he will grab some cheese for a snack as he can't think of anything else and has all but stopped making the evening this alzheimers, also asks over and over the day and the time and remembers little from the day before..conversation, etc?

Expert Answers

Ron Kauffman is a certified senior advisor (CSA), senior lifestyle radio host, syndicated newspaper columnist, and the author of Caring for a Loved One With Alzheimer's Disease. In addition, Kauffman is also the primary caregiver for his mother, who has Alzheimer's.

Dear Nurse Jen:

Thanks for your question, and I'm sorry to hear you're dealing with your husband's memory loss issues.

You didn't mention your husband's age, but regardless, the basis for dealing with any health issue is predicated on getting an early, accurate diagnosis of the problem from a qualified expert.

There's nothing you or your husband can do until you know for certain what it is you're dealing with and what is causing his problem.

I suggest you take your husband to a geriatric neurologist for a complete examination and assessment of his memory issues. Be sure you take a documented written list of the symptoms you've noticed, because your husband may not remember or may deny having those problems. Also be sure to take a complete list of any current medications including over the counter medicines and vitamin supplements.

Once you know what you're husband's problem is, there may be medicines available to help, or you may have to start planning for your husbands' continuing losses of memory and function over time.

If the diagnosis is dementia or Alzheimer's disease, I suggest you contact the Alzheimer's Association immediately. Get as much information as you can about the disease and learn what types of assistance and support are available to you and him as he progressively declines, should the disease be dementia related.

I wish I could be more definitive, but you have some first steps to take before I or others can offer opinions or more advice.

You might want to read a number of the previous questions and answers regarding other related issues that I and other experts have addressed concerning memory loss in our responses. That can be done in the archives, and I'm sure you'll find it helpful.

I wish you the best of luck.

Community Answers

Kss9 answered...

Try putting visual cues around the house. A company called Artnip makes pre-printed stickers and adhesive signs that help people with moderate to severe memory loss.