In the television show "House MD" the title character Dr. House loved to remind anyone who would listen that "everybody lies." His reasoning was that if someone is embarrassed or thinks a fact isn't important, they will either make up a response or omit an answer, making his job as a diagnostician that much more difficult. Your senior may not believe that she ever lies to her doctor, but there are some specific situations in which that might be inaccurate.
Is Lying to Doctors Common?
It's a bit of an exaggeration to believe that everyone is lying all the time. That would also be exhausting to try to keep up with all the time. It's much more believable to remember that sometimes your senior's doctor doesn't always get the full story and that is fixable.
Medication and medication schedules can be an area in which your senior might want to fib a little bit. She may sometimes forget to take medication or perhaps she doesn't enjoy the specific side effects that she experiences. But if she's not taking her medication properly, it can't do what it's supposed to do.
Vices that Aren't Completely Gone
Giving up certain habits is really difficult. Giving up smoking or cutting back on alcoholic beverages takes a lot of effort and commitment. Your senior may not feel comfortable admitting that she's hanging on to some of these vices, especially if her doctor has been pretty insistent about the idea. But being more open about this can help your senior's doctor find solutions that can help.
Memory Issues Are Important
So many problems can contribute to memory issues, but the one that your elderly family member is most likely to fear is Alzheimer's disease. Because of that, she may be likely to downplay any small or even large memory lapses. The thing is, memory issues can be an indication of so many different potential issues and knowing about them can help your senior's doctor come to a diagnosis.
Lies of Omission
Your elderly family member may be tempted to deny that there's anything else to discuss with her doctor, even if there is. If she doesn’t mention these other issues, that can be a problem later. Talk to your senior about being more open with her doctor.
There's a lot to consider when it comes to being your elderly family member's caregiver. Sometimes it means ensuring that she's being as honest as possible with her doctor. One way to do this is to go to appointments with her, so that you can gently interject information as needed.