Experiences with Scientologists and medical treatments

HollywoodGuy

Patron with Honors
After talking on the John Travolta thread about Jett's medical/lack of medical treatment, and mentioning how my dad's Scientologists caregivers put him on psych drugs, I thought I'd start a thread to talk about anecdotes of Scientologists we've known and how they've handled medical situations. I'm interested in hearing stories from other people.

My dad was fifty-one years older than me. When he was 77, we noticed he was getting Alzheimer's disease. It really started to progress overnight.

The only Scientologist in my family is my oldest sister, and she was the one our dad gave Power of Attorney to, so she was the one in charge of making decisions for his medical care.

One of her Scientologist friends mentioned that he knew some old lady who thought she was developing Alzheimer's, but then she went to see a naturopath, who put her on some program, and her symptoms were cured. So my sister decided to follow this friend's advice and took our dad to see a local naturopath. I think he may have had some hair test done which showed he had chronic metal poisoning but nothing acute? I don't remember the exact terms. It was suggested perhaps he get chelation therapy, if I remember correctly.

But right around the same time, she hired an ex-Sea Org member who had been on staff at Flag. This woman (let's call her Tzeitel) had routed out of Sea Org because she had multiple sclerosis. So, my sister hired this woman to move into our dad's house and be his caregiver.

Then Tzeitel decided, "I know a naturopath in Clearwater and he's really good!" So, I don't know how this happened, but my sister decided to drop the ball on the naturopath our dad was already seeing in order to do a program with Tzeitel's naturopath in Clearwater (which is all the way across the country from us!), this naturopath who had never seen or met our dad. And Tzeitel's naturopath put our dad on this dietary program where he had to take like 80 pills a day! I'm not exaggerating, it was at least 80 pills of vitamins and supplements! (It was like 28 pills per meal). It was so unpractical! Because my dad was so suspicious, so forgetful, so anxious, didn't like swallowing pills, he'd often pretend he'd swallow them and then hide them, etc.

Tzeitel used to do locationals on my dad. I think a few times, she even tried to give him Book One auditing.

It was sad, we were hoping that there was a way to cure our dad's symptoms. I wonder what would have happened if we had stuck with the other naturopath instead? I doubt anything miraculous would have occurred.

Our dad was very depressed over his condition and often very anxious. I suggested to my sister that perhaps our dad should be on psych drugs so that he could have a better experience, but she was adamant -- no drugs.

Eventually, my sister met a married couple who had just left staff at Gold (let's call them Brian and Kristen). They moved into our dad's house and gradually took over caregiving duties from Tzeitel, who eventually moved out. Brian and Kristen later made a deal with my sister to rent our dad's house and start their adult family care business, this way our father wouldn't have to leave his home and still get the care he needed and have his mortgage paid. Later, a friend of Kristen's (let's call him Dean), who had also just left staff from Gold, ended up moving into the house to work for Brian and Kristen and be another caregiver, as well as help them fix up the house to make it suitable for an adult family care business.

Meanwhile, my dad's symptoms continued to worsen. He started getting really paranoid, thinking my sister and me were imposters, thinking that his caregivers were plotting to kill him, and often times trying to escape the house.

Brian, Kristen and Dean had been longtime staff members at Gold, and they were still strongly loyal to the Church. Kristen and Dean were both OT Vs. But, they were the ones who realized the necessity of putting my dad on anti-anxiety pills. I was shocked when I learned that they put him on lorazepam. Scientologists putting my father on psych drugs!? I couldn't believe it! I researched lorazepam and found horror stories about it, so even I was a little bit concerned. But Dean explained to me that it wasn't to make their job as caregivers easier, but to make my dad feel more comfortable. There was really nothing to do for my dad at this point except alleviate his symptoms. I was so grateful that they had some common sense and that they were the ones to get my sister to relent on her anti-psych drug stance.
 

HollywoodGuy

Patron with Honors
By the way, I wanted to share this video. The key part is between 3:25 and 8:45.

On the subject of trying alternative medical treatments to cure illnesses, these ladies make a very good point: when someone is already at their wit's end trying to take care of a sick loved one, even though you have good intentions, you are doing them a big disservice when you recommend crap to them, leading them on a desperate, wild goose chase.

[video=youtube;7BjxXwufQew]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7BjxXwufQew[/video]
 

Udarnik

Gold Meritorious Patron
By the way, I wanted to share this video. The key part is between 3:25 and 8:45.

On the subject of trying alternative medical treatments to cure illnesses, these ladies make a very good point: when someone is already at their wit's end trying to take care of a sick loved one, even though you have good intentions, you are doing them a big disservice when you recommend crap to them, leading them on a desperate, wild goose chase.

Oh, Fucking A.

My major objection to useless crap such as naturopathy is that people use it instead of treatments that work better, either making the disease worse, or possibly courting death (as is the case with cancer). If natural cures worked, would we have even bothered developing Western Medicine? As Dara O'Briain says; we have tested an awful lot of natural medicine. The stuff that worked became just plain old "medicine", and the rest is a nice bowl of soup and some potpourri.

But you hit on another reason to hate the stuff. Even if Western medicine has failed, and there is no harm in substitutions any more, peddling shit that does not work cheats the family out of money that should go to palliative care and / or the heirs, AND it puts them on an emotional roller coaster as "cure" after "cure" fails. That is flat out cruel.

What really chaps my ass is when MDs who ought to know better start peddling that shit, such as when that fuckwitted quack Rima Laibow (who is popular with a lot of $cientologists, I understand) recommended colloidal silver as an Ebola cure. What? So people can turn blue while their shitting their lifeblood into the jungle? The Nigerian health minister almost fell for that. Fuck her sideways with a Buick.
 

WildKat

Gold Meritorious Patron
I recall in the Clearwater area during 80's, 90's, and 00's, the following miracle cures, many of them attached to MLM schemes or just the local chiropractors:

Blue-green algae
Bee pollen
Colloidal silver
Chelation
Noni juice
Vit B-12 shots
Mega cal mag doses
Magnet pads
Foot soak thing to pull out toxins....forget what it was called
AK...applied kinesiology, muscle testing

Those are just off the top of my head...I'm sure there's more.

Note: all this stuff touted as the latest miracle cure...all in the backyard of Flag, where "miracles were being delivered and OTs being made."
 

SPsince83

Gold Meritorious Patron
Oh, Fucking A.

My major objection to useless crap such as naturopathy is that people use it instead of treatments that work better, either making the disease worse, or possibly courting death (as is the case with cancer). If natural cures worked, would we have even bothered developing Western Medicine? As Dara O'Briain says; we have tested an awful lot of natural medicine. The stuff that worked became just plain old "medicine", and the rest is a nice bowl of soup and some potpourri.

But you hit on another reason to hate the stuff. Even if Western medicine has failed, and there is no harm in substitutions any more, peddling shit that does not work cheats the family out of money that should go to palliative care and / or the heirs, AND it puts them on an emotional roller coaster as "cure" after "cure" fails. That is flat out cruel.

What really chaps my ass is when MDs who ought to know better start peddling that shit, such as when that fuckwitted quack Rima Laibow (who is popular with a lot of $cientologists, I understand) recommended colloidal silver as an Ebola cure. What? So people can turn blue while their shitting their lifeblood into the jungle? The Nigerian health minister almost fell for that. Fuck her sideways with a Buick.


Fuckin A is generally used to express strong agreement. A simple FUCK!!! would be the proper response here. Geez. A man of your intellect should know this. Get with it, buddy.
 

Udarnik

Gold Meritorious Patron
Fuckin A is generally used to express strong agreement. A simple FUCK!!! would be the proper response here. Geez. A man of your intellect should know this. Get with it, buddy.

The "A" part referred to Hollywood Guy's comment. :p
 

Free to shine

Shiny & Free
I could go on for hours on this subject. Just one or two stories today.

My dad came into scientology in 1964 with the aim of improving his eyesight. He never has. His highest level in scio was OT5 and he drifted away when he had no more money and his interest turned to other weird spirituality and magical thinking.

Being a strong, active sort of bloke he had never suffered much illness and little to do with doctors, so when he became a scientologist that was reinforced. He suffered with a hernia for about 20 years rather than go see one.

He is now in his late 80’s and old age takes it’s toll, no matter the hundreds of different ‘miracle cures’ he has found over the years (mostly to try and improve mum’s health). When he realised he was having possibly serious medical problems, the search almost became a frenzy and his cupboards were full of bottles and potions. I am sure some of them did help but how can you know which one?

The situation deteriorated when mum’s dementia became more advanced and they ended up living with a scientology family member for a couple of years. Beautiful big house and the best care scientologists can give ... unfortunately the concept of ‘dropping the body’ and minimum medical treatment is part of that. Two elderly people with different stages of dementia is a difficult enough situation for anyone, let alone without appropriate medical treatment. I am sorry but chiropractors and vitamins just don't do it. I kept in touch by phone with dad as the scio involved has disconnected from me but could do no more than that ... and all I will say at this point is that almost every conversation with dad included him saying “I feel like I am in prison.”

At the scientologists request my brother took over their care, renting a home from her. Both our parents were a short way from death. Dad had kidney failure and a prostate the size of an orange. Mum was not taking all her heart and diabetes meds and had a large black cancer eating away her nose. My brother got them to all the appropriate doctors and specialists, numerous visits a week. I’ve seen the medical reports and blood tests and it was intensive. Mum had an operation on her nose, which saved her life and dad had a stent put in his remaining just working kidney and his prostate went back to pretty much normal with the right medication, which saved his life.

There is so, so much more to this story that I can’t go into right now. That’s the medical side of it anyway. The idea that if your body is failing you may as well get it over with and pick up another is just evil IMO. It does not allow any grace, dignity or comfort for the person who IS HERE right now. My brother was pushed out (scientologist had POA and wanted to sell the house) and my parents are now both in a nursing home which at least gives them some support and constant care. As far as I am aware a needed stent replacement for dad is months overdue now, and his memory is almost gone. Mum just sits and smiles or sleeps as the constant social stimulation and outings my brother helped with no longer happen. :bigcry:

Oh, bleh, time to take a walk.
 
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jbason

Patron
My particular experience is not with scientology in this topic, but the same situation happened in a group I was in and because they are family they still try to input their advice constantly. My husband has a seizure disorder, because of this he had a prolonged seizure that gave him a massive heart attack, heart failure, heart damage, renal failure, liver enlargement, pneumonia, fluid around the lungs and more. His organs were shutting down, he was in the ICU when they come in, demanding to do this chiropractic, vitamin laden, massage bullsh&t that they believed would save his life. Well, luckily for me, I am the wife, I made the decisions, and when he went into V-Tac they shocked his heart into rhythm and I gave them permission to do whatever it took. He is only 31! This just happened last month! Now, he's home with skilled nursing care, physical therapists and on the heart transplant list. If it were up to those idiots he would be dead by now!!!!!!
anyways, just wanted to reiterate the abuse that is suffered at the hands of those who do not believe in western medicine like the Co$! Their "happy" attitude is what drew me to them, their outrageous manipulation, deceit and abuse is what drove me away. I just don't understand, and never will, how intelligent human beings turning away the miraculous advancement in medications that we have now, including the psych drugs. But I guess I do semi understand how someone so engulfed in that frame of mind could be opposed to it, but when it's your loved one you do whatever it takes. I'm happy that I was able to step in and decide my husbands medical treatments, but people who are disconnected can't do that with their loved ones and it breaks my heart. These stories are why a semi-never-in (only took 1 course) like myself is drawn to support those who have been abused and lied to and hurt by them! It makes my blood boil thinking about it, and those quack Scilion doctors who spew venom from their prescription pad. :angry::duh::angry:
 

bromo

Patron with Honors
sending you a cyber hug, fts, as it sounds as if you could use one right about now.

About talking to folks who are ill about all these untested "cures" I have a story. My 46 year old husband was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer at stage 3. I was his caretaker through surgeries, chemo, radiation and all manner of medical emergencies and such until his last day. One day when Mike had been diagnosed about 5 months (he lived 11 months after diagnosis) our quirky next door neighbor knocked on the door. He went into this spiel about carrots and some such and handed me a cassette tape. I was not rude as he was just trying to be helpful but part of me was incensed that here my husband was battling this disease with all he and western med could do and the neighbor was just so sure that he could be cured by whatever the huckster on the tape was selling which all I can remember contained carrot juice. Needless to say, I chucked the tape, although I did listen to about 5 minutes of it which was all I could stand. But if we had been of a different mindset, who knows how much money the huckster could have made off of us if we fell for it, besides the fact that there was no scientific basis or study for his claims.
 

DeeAnna

Patron Meritorious
After talking on the John Travolta thread about Jett's medical/lack of medical treatment, and mentioning how my dad's Scientologists caregivers put him on psych drugs, I thought I'd start a thread to talk about anecdotes of Scientologists we've known and how they've handled medical situations. I'm interested in hearing stories from other people.

My dad was fifty-one years older than me. When he was 77, we noticed he was getting Alzheimer's disease. It really started to progress overnight.

The only Scientologist in my family is my oldest sister, and she was the one our dad gave Power of Attorney to, so she was the one in charge of making decisions for his medical care.

One of her Scientologist friends mentioned that he knew some old lady who thought she was developing Alzheimer's, but then she went to see a naturopath, who put her on some program, and her symptoms were cured. So my sister decided to follow this friend's advice and took our dad to see a local naturopath. I think he may have had some hair test done which showed he had chronic metal poisoning but nothing acute? I don't remember the exact terms. It was suggested perhaps he get chelation therapy, if I remember correctly.

But right around the same time, she hired an ex-Sea Org member who had been on staff at Flag. This woman (let's call her Tzeitel) had routed out of Sea Org because she had multiple sclerosis. So, my sister hired this woman to move into our dad's house and be his caregiver.

Then Tzeitel decided, "I know a naturopath in Clearwater and he's really good!" So, I don't know how this happened, but my sister decided to drop the ball on the naturopath our dad was already seeing in order to do a program with Tzeitel's naturopath in Clearwater (which is all the way across the country from us!), this naturopath who had never seen or met our dad. And Tzeitel's naturopath put our dad on this dietary program where he had to take like 80 pills a day! I'm not exaggerating, it was at least 80 pills of vitamins and supplements! (It was like 28 pills per meal). It was so unpractical! Because my dad was so suspicious, so forgetful, so anxious, didn't like swallowing pills, he'd often pretend he'd swallow them and then hide them, etc.

Tzeitel used to do locationals on my dad. I think a few times, she even tried to give him Book One auditing.

It was sad, we were hoping that there was a way to cure our dad's symptoms. I wonder what would have happened if we had stuck with the other naturopath instead? I doubt anything miraculous would have occurred.

Our dad was very depressed over his condition and often very anxious. I suggested to my sister that perhaps our dad should be on psych drugs so that he could have a better experience, but she was adamant -- no drugs.

Eventually, my sister met a married couple who had just left staff at Gold (let's call them Brian and Kristen). They moved into our dad's house and gradually took over caregiving duties from Tzeitel, who eventually moved out. Brian and Kristen later made a deal with my sister to rent our dad's house and start their adult family care business, this way our father wouldn't have to leave his home and still get the care he needed and have his mortgage paid. Later, a friend of Kristen's (let's call him Dean), who had also just left staff from Gold, ended up moving into the house to work for Brian and Kristen and be another caregiver, as well as help them fix up the house to make it suitable for an adult family care business.

Meanwhile, my dad's symptoms continued to worsen. He started getting really paranoid, thinking my sister and me were imposters, thinking that his caregivers were plotting to kill him, and often times trying to escape the house.

Brian, Kristen and Dean had been longtime staff members at Gold, and they were still strongly loyal to the Church. Kristen and Dean were both OT Vs. But, they were the ones who realized the necessity of putting my dad on anti-anxiety pills. I was shocked when I learned that they put him on lorazepam. Scientologists putting my father on psych drugs!? I couldn't believe it! I researched lorazepam and found horror stories about it, so even I was a little bit concerned. But Dean explained to me that it wasn't to make their job as caregivers easier, but to make my dad feel more comfortable. There was really nothing to do for my dad at this point except alleviate his symptoms. I was so grateful that they had some common sense and that they were the ones to get my sister to relent on her anti-psych drug stance.


Oh, Hollywood Guy, it made me sad to read your father's story. But as you describe it, it is typical for dementia. But not necessarily Alzheimer's dementia. When you see the sudden, sharp declines like you describe, it is often Lewy Body Dementia - the second most common type of dementia associated with old age. BUT there can actually be a combination of both existing at the same time. A good gerentologist or gerentological psychologist can administer a battery of tests (paper and pencil tests, asking questions type of tests as opposed to "medical tests" such as blood testing) to assist in a specific diagnosis. Because different meds are used for the different types of dementia. Also, some commonly used meds that are popularly used with the elderly can make certain dementias worse. (Especially those designed to "control urine leakage" - which is a problem the elderly often have.)

The paranoia, the anxiety and the agitation are all part of the dementia. It is indeed kinder to the patient to medicate them. I've had a problem with a close relative not wanting to have an elderly demented family member medicated. Which to me is outright cruelty. Aricept has helped a lot of folks with Alzheimer's Dementia, not as good with Lewy Body Dementia but they usually still try it because it helps some. Lorazipam in low doses and carefully monitored is helpful for the anxiety and agitation.

On the naturopaths and their supplements: Please be assured there are NO recognized clinical studies that support the idea that massive doses of any supplement will either prevent or cure dementia. Of course a well balanced diet is needed and perhaps a standard daily multi-vitamin. Beware of self-published results of studies conducted at "Institutes" founded and/or supported by either supplement manufacturers or the naturopaths who sell them. Some charge for publication of these "studies". And when you read the parameters of the "study" they are not conducted according to accepted guidelines for clinical studies or trials.

Dementia is a very difficult thing to deal with.
 

DeeAnna

Patron Meritorious
sending you a cyber hug, fts, as it sounds as if you could use one right about now.

About talking to folks who are ill about all these untested "cures" I have a story. My 46 year old husband was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer at stage 3. I was his caretaker through surgeries, chemo, radiation and all manner of medical emergencies and such until his last day. One day when Mike had been diagnosed about 5 months (he lived 11 months after diagnosis) our quirky next door neighbor knocked on the door. He went into this spiel about carrots and some such and handed me a cassette tape. I was not rude as he was just trying to be helpful but part of me was incensed that here my husband was battling this disease with all he and western med could do and the neighbor was just so sure that he could be cured by whatever the huckster on the tape was selling which all I can remember contained carrot juice. Needless to say, I chucked the tape, although I did listen to about 5 minutes of it which was all I could stand. But if we had been of a different mindset, who knows how much money the huckster could have made off of us if we fell for it, besides the fact that there was no scientific basis or study for his claims.


Hugs from me also, bromo. And my sympathy for your loss. My late husband = Stage IV Kidney Cancer at diagnosis. He made it 14 months with surgery, chemo, radiation, cybersurgery. Some friends and even a few of his relatives were just nuts. "Did you try this?" "Oh, I heard this or that might work." I did my very best to keep in mind that these people were trying to be kind, but there were some days - and I'm sure you had them - where I just had to turn away from such asinine statements.

Oh, and on that carrot thing - at the time, a guy I knew described to me that his then fiancé had contracted a lethal cancer and she went the carrot diet route to the point that her skin was turning orange - seriously - but it did not help her. He said the carrots were in addition to the traditional medical treatment, not instead of.
 

lotus

stubborn rebel sheep!
snip

My parents are now both in a nursing home which at least gives them some support and constant care. As far as I am aware a needed stent replacement for dad is months overdue now, and his memory is almost gone. Mum just sits and smiles or sleeps as the constant social stimulation and outings my brother helped with no longer happen. :bigcry:

Oh, I am getting upset, time to take a walk.

I feel for you! :unsure:

I just ended a long process of years to care about my parents ''despite'' many though and painful barriers...

But I am now at peace, and life is taking care to heal the pain :yes:

I wish your pain is soothed when you know they are fine, wherever they are on their path, despite their old body , and you know you did the very best as you can!

:hug:

best
Lotus
 

Free to shine

Shiny & Free
I feel for you! :unsure:

I just ended a long process of years to care about my parents ''despite'' many though and painful barriers...

But I am now at peace, and life is taking care to heal the pain :yes:

I wish your pain is soothed when you know they are fine, wherever they are on their path, despite their old body , and you know you did the very best as you can!

:hug:

best
Lotus

Thanks all for the hugs .... to be honest I have been living with this shit most of my life and this is the tip of the iceberg. Dad still does not forgive me or understand why I had to have hip replacements decades ago. When he had his first operation a few years ago he actually was impressed, but it's kinda too late for a complete turnaround.

As for my parents, well I am ok that they both made the choices they made ... and they live the consequences, as we all do. I spoke to dad yesterday and I have to laugh. He said "Hubbard should have left it all with only the comm course!" and then wandered into the psychic he was going to contact and a book about dreams. Usually I am subjected to "Mr Hubbard says ...." even though he would never in a million billion years go back and thinks Miscavige should be dropped naked and alone into the wild Amazon. At least he knows me ... for now. :)
 

Helena Handbasket

Gold Meritorious Patron
Fuckin A is generally used to express strong agreement. A simple FUCK!!! would be the proper response here. Geez. A man of your intellect should know this. Get with it, buddy.
"******* A" (okay, so I'm old-fashioned, I use asterisks) can mean strong disagreement, or even surprise as well. The key word is strong. It's equivalent to a string of exclamation points.

The "A" part referred to Hollywood Guy's comment. :p
And all this time I thought it referred to a body part! :wink2:

Helena
 

lotus

stubborn rebel sheep!
FTS.
I probably have an idea of what you may encounter.

Had been the same here, I read you and it's like it was here.
Dad was the one with the dementia and mom with the cancer.

They never forgave me that i have been in $cientology and they had lack of trust in me while they never get I left this cult 2 decades ago and that I would never give them a penny and that they don't hold any control on me...
:confused2:

But both, at the very end of their life, (Mom when she took her last breath) made a move to be at peace with me and to show their appreciation and confidence in me. Dad, few weeks ago, though I was a social worker and began to talk to me about his concern about mom's relationship with one of his children : Me... :unsure:
so as he was talking, and i was listening, he gave me the key to unlock some tough situations that happened with mom...A great gift he gave me few days before he left...

I told him ( as a social worker)...Oh I think it's fine with your daughter - she deeply loved your wife, and forgave long time ago...she told me. They love so much eachother...
Then, he looked at me and smile..at peace...

Some of the best moments have been on phone...too!

Few months ago I feared he wouldn't know who I am..and the only time it happened, he gave me a gift of peace.

When it can't be worse, life has still good gift...

I wish you can be gifted with your little chats with Dad , it appears you are sharing about ''hot'' topics in your family - these moments are often the best, as people at the end of their life, often give up to inhibitions and taboos...which make relations deep and genuine.

:yes:
 

Helena Handbasket

Gold Meritorious Patron
For years, I've been struggling with emotional issues (for details, see the Telepathic Sex and Stupid Cupid threads). It's gotten so bad that I've been trying to schedule an appointment with a psychiatrist (and for someone that still believes the tech has some good parts, that's saying something!)

From time to time, I would decide to "take care of myself" -- taking all my vitamins, minerals, hormone replacements, and what have you -- and then I'd decline into a state I call a crash! It seems that not taking care of myself would bring me down to an unoptimum state, allowing me to avoid dealing with my issues the same way an alcoholic uses the bottle to accomplish the same thing.

Out of desperation, I did some internet research, then went to a health food store and got these herbal extract capsules -- and they made a huge difference! Almost all my "psychiatric" symptoms (recurring anxiety and depression) went away. I was hoping for some improvement, but the effect of these were dramatic.

Nonetheless, it was my indoctrination against anything medical or psychiatric that made me reluctant to take even this feeble step. But I'm glad I did.

Helena
 

HollywoodGuy

Patron with Honors
Oh, Hollywood Guy, it made me sad to read your father's story. But as you describe it, it is typical for dementia. But not necessarily Alzheimer's dementia. When you see the sudden, sharp declines like you describe, it is often Lewy Body Dementia - the second most common type of dementia associated with old age. BUT there can actually be a combination of both existing at the same time. A good gerentologist or gerentological psychologist can administer a battery of tests (paper and pencil tests, asking questions type of tests as opposed to "medical tests" such as blood testing) to assist in a specific diagnosis. Because different meds are used for the different types of dementia. Also, some commonly used meds that are popularly used with the elderly can make certain dementias worse. (Especially those designed to "control urine leakage" - which is a problem the elderly often have.)

That's the problem with Alzheimer's, there isn't a way to really diagnose it other than symptoms and behavior. I think the only way you can know for sure is if you give the patient a spinal tap (which is quite painful, and we certainly weren't going to subject our dad to that). I think now, PET scans can also diagnose Alzheimer's. But other than that, the only way you can know for sure if it's Alzheimer's is after the patient has died.

I think I have heard of Lewy Body Dementia, and I think we did wonder if that was what he had instead of Alzheimer's. But, whether it's Alzheimer's or Lewy Body or Vascular Dementia, dementia is dementia.

The paranoia, the anxiety and the agitation are all part of the dementia. It is indeed kinder to the patient to medicate them. I've had a problem with a close relative not wanting to have an elderly demented family member medicated. Which to me is outright cruelty. Aricept has helped a lot of folks with Alzheimer's Dementia, not as good with Lewy Body Dementia but they usually still try it because it helps some. Lorazipam in low doses and carefully monitored is helpful for the anxiety and agitation.

The neurologist recommended Aricept. We decided not to use it because our understanding was that in general, it didn't make much of a difference, and in some cases, it could cause stroke or death (I remember reading something like that on wikipedia, but that information seems to be gone now, but at the time, I showed it to the neurologist, who was unaware of it. Sometimes, you have to do your own research because you can't rely on experts to be up to date on everything).

The caregivers started my dad out on Lorazepam. Shortly afterward, they also started giving him blood pressure lowering medication that could help with his anxiety and paranoia. I think gradually, they started putting him on other drugs. It was hard to tell whether they were working all the time, especially since we could never be sure that he had taken his pills, he was so good at sneaking not swallowing and then hiding them.

On the naturopaths and their supplements: Please be assured there are NO recognized clinical studies that support the idea that massive doses of any supplement will either prevent or cure dementia. Of course a well balanced diet is needed and perhaps a standard daily multi-vitamin. Beware of self-published results of studies conducted at "Institutes" founded and/or supported by either supplement manufacturers or the naturopaths who sell them. Some charge for publication of these "studies". And when you read the parameters of the "study" they are not conducted according to accepted guidelines for clinical studies or trials.

I'm not against naturopathy in general. I think it has its benefits. But my view is that if you want to see a naturopath, do it just as a way of maintaining your general health. Try healing your leaky gut, your candida, whatever problems your digestive tract has, etc, see if it makes a difference in the way you feel. But when you have a disease, you should go see a medical doctor.

Dementia is a very difficult thing to deal with.

Thank you, DeeAnna.

My father eventually ended up contracting cancer. We don't know where it started, but it was originally discovered in his bladder. After getting the tumor in the bladder removed, the following week it was discovered that he had the cancer in his chest and shoulder. At this point, the oncologist said the best thing to do for my dad was give him comfort and dignity. While normally cancer is a very scary and stressful disease to battle for anybody, it couldn't have come at a better time in my dad's life. At last, he would be free from his mental purgatory. While I had always been impatient and snappy with him because of his constantly repeating questions, when I learned that he had cancer, I suddenly had the patience of God.

Incidentally, during this time, my mom suggested to me, "Well, there's a diet you can try giving him to cure his cancer."

He died two and a half months later, at the age of 81, after living with Alzheimer's for four years.

My dad wasn't ever a smoker. But during the Korean War, he had been exposed to nuclear bomb testing radiation in Nevada back during the '50s, so we believe that was what caused the cancer. One of the caregivers noticed an ad in AARP magazine that the VA was handing out settlements to vets who had been exposed to radiation. After my dad died, my oldest sister put in the claim, and the VA gave his children a settlement.
 

Free to shine

Shiny & Free
Bumping this important thread.

I think it is very relevant in understanding why Miscavige says "let him die" of his father. That is a common way of thinking in scientology and just sort of normal within the bubble. The reasons for that have been discussed here many times over, however it is still a shocking attitude for people to grasp when reading about it for the first time.
 
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