Periods of memory loss that are outside of the usual process of recollection is the sign that most people are familiar with or will recognize in a loved one. Additionally, the subject matter of the memory loss is also an obvious indicator. When a senior or loved one begins forgetting names of their children, friends, or where they live this is a true indicator that something larger is at play. However, these are not always the first signs that your loved one might be in the early stages of dementia. Some other symptoms are often overlooked or shrugged off as normal aging and forgetfulness. Often times these other indicators are missed, especially if you parent or loved one live alone.
We wanted to provide a quick list of changes to look out for when a senior might be experiencing Alzheimer’s disease or another type of dementia.
- Difficulty finding simple words
- Trouble writing not due to arthritis pain or injury
- Forgetting important appointments or dates
- Quick to anger or becoming tearful easily
- Misplacing items in strange locations
- Inability to remember names or children or close friends
- Change in hygiene
- Becoming suspicious or paranoid
- Withdrawing from social situations
- Unintended weight loss
- Falling victim to fraud
This is not a complete list by any means and often times these things can happen to any people but often time they come about in situations that do not call for that level of response. These signs are often recognized in the earliest stages of the disease’s progression. If you loved one is exhibiting any of these signs, it might be worth speaking to your physician. Your doctor will be best at ruling out other health conditions that might exhibit similar symptoms.
The Dementia Diagnosis
If your physician suspects dementia, they will likely conduct a physical and a series of tests. The process often includes:
- Complete Medical History
- A Physical Exam
- Blood Tests
- Spinal Tap (in some cases)
- Brain Imaging
At Life’s Journey Senior Living we know that change can be difficult. Our experienced team can help put both of your minds at ease and see the positives in the situation. For more information about our services please do not hesitate to contact us directly at (217) 463-3003.