Defined by the Alzheimer’s Association, dementia refers to diseases or conditions that negatively impact daily cognitive abilities such as memory, language, or problem-solving. There are conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease that is considered a branch of dementia and is often the most common form.
Beginning Signs of Dementia
In most cases, symptoms of dementia slowly manifest before worsening. Since our brains are so unique, symptoms can differ greatly from case to case.
Early stages of dementia generally impacts language, focus, and communication abilities. The checklist below highlights common symptoms potentially leading to dementia. It is crucial not to diagnose yourself or a loved one without a professional’s opinion.
Short-term memory, which is information located in an area of the brain until it is stored as long-term memory, is usually impaired in early stages of dementia. This would include any recent memories.
One common situation in patients with early dementia is they would be able to remember where they went on a family vacation ten years ago, but could not remember what they had for lunch that day. Other behaviors may include losing keys, not remembering their schedule for the day, or forgetting why they entered a room in the first place.
Memory loss and behavioral changes might cause a senior with early stages of dementia to repeat language or behaviors more often than before. Brushing teeth more than once in the morning, or repeating questions they just asked are examples of this.
Dementia often results in mood and behavioral changes. Depression is often common in seniors newly diagnosed with dementia.
Along with mood changes, people may experience adjustments in their personality as well. Certain behaviors in an elderly loved one that might be a sign of early dementia include:
- Constantly losing a purse or wallet
- Forgetting to pay bills
- Getting lost around the neighborhood
- Short-term memory loss
- Forgetting appointments
Repeated, noticeable behaviors such as these should not be ignored. The diagnosis of dementia requires a professional opinion, so it is important to be proactive in the overall condition.
After receiving a professional dementia diagnosis, it is advised to seek support from a caregiver. In-home care and assisted living facilities are both beneficial care options that can provide the necessary help and support for a senior with dementia.
Fortunately, ElderCare 4 Families offers a variety of caregiving services for seniors with medical and emotional needs. Our personalized care plans are designed to meet our clients where they are at, then determine the specific strategies, routines, and techniques to implement. We strive to develop social activities designed to improve mood and maintain memories. Additionally, safety is a major priority.