Hi Rachael – my mom has Alzheimer's and recently has started to continually have her hand to her mouth. At times instead of breathing normally she puffs air rapidly. Is this a behavior you have seen or should I have her doctor check her out. Thanks, Diane

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Hi Dianne, that’s an interesting issue. I haven’t seen that exactly before, so I would recommend getting her lungs/breathing checked out. This is something that could be a new behavioral problem, but we should rule out a physical issue first. It could be solved with an oxygen concentrator machine used as needed, too.

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Rachael Wonderlin is an internationally-recognized dementia care expert and consultant. She has a Master’s in Gerontology and is the author of two published books with Johns Hopkins University Press. Rachael owns Dementia By Day, a dementia care consulting and education company.

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