How can I support my friend who is losing her memory?

My friend states she is losing her memory, and she is correct. I encouraged her to tell her primary care doctor, but she changes the subject. She has told her adult children, but ignores their suggestion that she move near them. I have told her that it is correct that she is losing her memory and I hope her high intelligence and good sense of organization will compensate for the loss a little. We are both 85 years old and live in an independent living facility that offers no medical care, but does have visiting nurse practitioner.

3 Replies

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  • Higher levels of education contribute to "cognitive reserve" - a concept that helps many people compensate for early signs of AD.

    Since you live in an independent living facility, perhaps you could speak with the nurse practitioner or one of the managers about their process for identifying residents that need additional help. My bet is that they already have a defined method for the kind of situation you have described with your friend.

    All the best.

  • Good advice.

  • Your response would be helpful in an independent living facility that had medical staff, but this place is licensed as a non medical facility. It transports residents to medical services and permits residents to be visited by social workers, nurses, doctors and hospice personnel. It is managed by a director, assistant director and resident-staff coordinator, all of whom may refer a resident to outside agencies if asked by the resident. I mentioned my friend's situation to them, but they focus only on the volunteer services my friend performs for them. I also spoke to my friend's children when they visited, but they just say she takes on too many obligations. Fortunately, my friend has decided not to drive any place she isn't familiar with, and to surrender her license if she gets lost.

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