Depression in dementia

Like many people, when I was struggling at the start of this illness, I was told it was just stress first then that I was just depressed?

After ten weeks off work and getting so bored, and being followed by our dog everywhere I went, I said I was going back to work, whether the doctor liked it or not.

I knew there was more to this than depression, but this doctor did not accept it.

This idiot wanted me on anti depressants something I refused to take as I did not need them, and this was backed up by my wife, who was a dispenser in the chemists. 

 I and my wife told her that I was not depressed, and we demanded a second opinion from someone higher up, like a hospital consultant. This did not go down too well, but we then started to get answers after a few months of tests etc.

I have met may people over the years who were in the same boat, who like me were later diagnosed as having dementia of one sort or another, so why did these doctors not look for the cause of the depression if we indeed, had it in the first place. 

Is depression the answer to all doctors these days, a quick fix.

I know some people who were put in mental institutions and were treated with electric shocks etc, only to find out later that they had dementia, but there were no apologies for this serious error.

Yes there is depression in dementia, and to be very honest who would not be depressed in one way or another, when they are losing control over their lives, at work, with hobbies along with other things. 

Like many I got to the stage where I refused to accept that I felt depressed when things did not work the way they had for years, because I was convinced the consultant would try to change things, as many consultants refused to accept that depression was and is part of dementia.

This proves that diagnosis has a long way to go before people with this illness are treated properly.

We all know that there are different types of depession, but are doctors lumping all types together simply because they do not know, or is it an easy answer to all.

But there are far too many people on anti depressants these days, when they should not be on them, then, they cannot get off them.

Let us hope that in the future doctors get better training in both dementia and depression, so they fully understand our problems, and look into the cause of the so called depression before going too deep into treatments that may well not be needed, nor will they solve our problem. 

I was extremely lucky to get a brilliant consultant in the North East who knew about Lewy body dementia, and told me to keep myself active and busy, so that I never got to the stage where I would get depressed at losing control, and then giving up altogether. 

In her words try something one day, if that fails try on a second day and a third.

 If that fails give up altogether and do something else, do not try to hang on to things you can no longer do. 

Life is too short, go out enjoy each day as it comes and try something new if you are up to it.

Her kind words have kept me going, yes I get depressed when things don't work, but then I pick myself up and try to move on. 

I know that when I lose control of my computer, I may well have problems as this is my life, but I am trying to be as positive as I can, and hope that never ever happens while I can fight it.


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