Dementia is not a particular type of disease but a term that is used to describe a range of mental health diseases that also involve memory loss and functional problems.
One of the most commonly known types of dementia is Alzheimer’s disease, which takes up almost 60 to 80 percent of the total cases of dementia. While most forms of dementia cannot be cured, spotting the symptoms early can prevent further damage.
Top 8 Signs Of Dementia To Watch Out For
Here are some of the signs of dementia that you can watch out for and help the affected person get timely medical attention and care.
1. Lapse In Memory
Trouble filling in gaps in the memory space is definitely one of the most common and earliest signs of dementia. In most cases, the changes in memory loss are so minimal that you will hardly notice anything amiss. The person who is affected may simply forget an incident, or a special event in the past, and it will not seem as if some real change is happening in terms of memory loss. In case the patient is quite old, he or she may be able to perfectly recall things that happened a long time back, but may not remember something as recent as whether or not they had breakfast.
2. Difficulty With Speech
A person who starts to suffer from dementia will have some or the other type of difficulty when it comes to speech. This does not mean that the person will have slurred speech. However, it will be more to do with being able to form proper sentences, as the person will find it difficult to remember and use the right words that make sense. As a result, it will seem that the person is taking more than usual time to complete a sentence and to speak.
3. Difficulty In Remembering Names Or Recognizing Faces
Dementia makes a person forget simple things such as names of those who are very familiar as well as names of places or directions to places that are regularly visited. A person who is affected with dementia will find it difficult to connect a name and face, and may even forget the name of a partner or kids and find it difficult to recognize them by face even.
4. Problem In Concentration, Focusing, Disorientation
A person who shows the earliest signs of dementia will seem disoriented and confused most of the times. While it may not be too pronounced, they may appear to look lost a lot of the time, and will find it difficult to understand what is being said or what needs to be done. It will also be difficult for the person to understand basic instructions and follow rules.
5. Mood Swings
Mood swings in people who suffer from dementia can be sudden and subtle, and sometimes very pronounced as well. It is also one of the more common signs of dementia. Depression, anxiety and always feeling lethargic and unhappy are some of the most common mood changes that patients who suffer from dementia will exhibit. As a result of the mood swings, there is also a change in the overall personality of the patient, and they may seem to be more difficult to get along with.
6. Problems In Organisational Skills
Dementia makes it difficult for the person to be able to perform regular everyday tasks with ease. A person who is starting to be affected with dementia will have issues with organisational skills. It means that trying to do something as simple as playing a game, or keeping your things in place that you are used to do every day will become increasingly difficult.
7. Difficulty In Adapting To Change
You may think of it as mood swings, but often those who suffer from dementia will find it very difficult to do something that is not part of their usual routine. A dementia patient will not want to do a new activity or visit a new place, as they will find it difficult to concentrate and understand basic instructions. Not being able to remember people and places also adds to the fear of getting lost, and will make them reluctant to try something they are not really familiar and comfortable with.
8. Social Withdrawal
Because they often cannot remember faces and names and find it difficult to speak as well as to concentrate, patients who suffer from dementia start withdrawing from social interaction in an effort to avoid embarrassment and awkwardness.
If you suspect your loved one is suffering from dementia, it can be difficult to take care of all the symptoms alone. Enlisting the care of a medical team as well as a professional caregiver can help you provide timely medical intervention, as well as make sure your loved one is comfortable and well taken care of.