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My Dad is 71 and has been exhibiting a gradual decline of mental functions for many years. He now has difficulty following multi-step directions, is starting to get disoriented in the small town in which he lives, and repeatedly asks for the same information over and over. However, along with this decline he has not been upset and often laughs off these difficulties. He has never been to a neurologist and does not particularly want to know if anything is wrong with him. My question is whether we should insist upon seeing a doctor at this point. Treatment wise, I very much doubt there is much that can be gained and the knowledge of a diagnosis might significantly depress him. My mother is in some denial and also fears the social stigma of a diagnosis. Has anyone dealt with a similar situation and what would you recommend? At this point it does not seem like a doctor is necessary but I am pretty sure at some point that would help. How sensitive can neurologists be to helping patients who don’t necessarily want to know? Is his mood likely to change and become more difficult? Thank you for sharing any insights.
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