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Sudden Changes in Mom's Personality: What Does It Mean?

Judie Rappaport
June 17, 2014

Dear Judie,

 

Mom (87) lives alone and until recently, she’s managed to take care of herself very well. Lately when I visit or telephone, she gets very nasty. No matter how hard I try to be pleasant, she starts arguments that lead to shouting matches that result in my hanging up or going home.

- Mary, Hobe Sound

 

Dear Mary,

 

Everyone has good and bad days, but Mom’s drastic personality change signals a need for medical attention. Personality change is symptomatic of over 100 medical conditions, including depression, adverse drug reactions, vitamin B12 deficiency, Alzheimer’s, stroke, and urinary tract infections. In her current mindset, its unlikely Mom will see her physician without a special reason for the visit. You may want to enlist another family member or close friend to suggest the exam. If necessary, use a fiblet: “Mom, it’s time for your check-up or your health insurance/prescription benefits may lapse.” Make sure an advocate accompanies her and hands the physician a report on the recent changes in her behavior, including a complete list of current medications.

 

 

Judie Rappaport, President & Founder
Preferred Lifestyle Services

Trust Yourself. You Have the Knowledge, Insight,
and Power to make the right decisions for you and your parent. ©

 
 

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Dear Judie