Dementia is a complicated disease and the early warning signs often mimic those of other diseases of disorders. To help families identify dementia in a senior loved one as early as possible, Home Care Assistance of Mississauga wanted to share five of common warning signs of the condition.
- Memory Problems – Although some memory problems are common to aging and not a sign of dementia, when two types of memory impairment interfere with daily life, such as problems with language, reasoning, communication, and focus, dementia may be the cause. Subtle changes in short-term memory are often the first to appear. Seniors may struggle to remember why they came into a room or forget to perform a daily task such as checking the mail or paying bills.
- Communication Problems – Seniors with early dementia have trouble expressing their thoughts. They often cannot explain things or find the right word. They may lose their train of thought in the middle of a sentence or forget names of things they should know, such as a birthday or special event.
- Difficulty with Familiar Tasks – This problem first presents as difficulty with complex tasks, such as remembering the rules to a game such as bridge, or not being able to balance a checkbook. Your senior loved one may resist learning new things because they are unable to remember the routine.
- Mood and Personality Changes – Depression is an early sign of dementia that is easy to overlook. Depression can manifest as the loss of interest in once favorite activities or not wanting to spend time with friends and family. Personality may do a complete turnaround, such as a formerly shy senior suddenly being outgoing due to changes in judgment.
- Inability to Adapt to Change – As your senior loved one starts to experience the changes that come with dementia, such as not remembering familiar people or not being able to follow a conversation, they may crave routine. Trying new things or going new places may be terrifying, causing withdrawal into a narrower, safer existence.
Diagnosing early dementia is often difficult, but putting the pieces together as soon as possible allows your senior loved one to start getting help at an early stage. Families must also remember that there are support services available including dementia care in Mississauga. Provided by Home Care Assistance, professional dementia care from trained caregivers can help to manage symptoms of the disease so your loved one can maintain his or her independence and joy for life. To request a complimentary consultation, call (905) 337-1200 and see how dementia care can benefit your aging loved one.