Memory loss and difficulties with thinking are the main symptoms of dementia. Dementia is a term used for a decline in mental ability. This is one of the worst mental problems, because it affects both the lives of the victims and their family members.
What is dementia?
Don’t mistaken dementia for a disease. It is not a disease, it is a term that is used to describe and categorize certain mental disorders like:
- Normal Pressure Hydrocephalus
- Parkinson’s Disease
- Vascular Dementia
- Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease (CJD)
- Dementia with Lewy Bodies
- Frontotemporal Dementia
- Huntington’s Disease
- Wernicke-Korsakoff Syndrome
You can find more than 100 different types of dementia which are progressive and damage the brain more and more as time passes by. The most prevalent type of dementia is Alzheimer’s and it takes over 50% of all dementia cases. According to researches, about 5 million Americans suffer from some form of dementia.
Dementia affects different people in different ways
Not all people may experience dementia in the same way. It affects them differently dye to their emotional and physical stability, personality, and the support they are given. This disorder in incurable at this point, early diagnosis can go a long way in helping to address the problem on time.
12 early warning signs of dementia
1. Short term memory problems
These short term memory problems are the most common early signs of dementia. This memory loss may cause individuals to remember some events of many years ago, and fail to recall more recent events. The affected individuals, may also have problem to remember where they put something or why they went somewhere.
2. Difficulty with choosing a suitable word
Another sign that dementia is setting in is when the person has difficulty being able to choose a suitable word to express themselves. Sometimes to have a normal conversation can be very difficult for these people, and it might take much more time.It can happen to them frequently to try to remember a specific word or choose the one appropriate for the conversation.
3. Mood swings
Sometimes people that have the early stages of dementia may become depressed for a short period. But, a change of personality can also be possible, meaning that if someone who is ordinary shy may become outgoing and gregarious.
Losing interest in doing anything, even the things they enjoyed doing earlier is also a sign of dementia. These people may be hesitant to go out, as well as losing interest in being with their loved ones.
5. Difficulties with making plans or problem solving
People that are experiencing early stages of dementia may have problems to make plans or try to follow some plan. Some of them may have problems when dealing with numbers, focusing on a single thing, or solving problems.
6. Finding it difficult to complete ordinary everyday chores
When finding it difficult to complete simple ordinary chores that have been previously done without even thing about them, then dementia is in the way. Sometimes the victims of dementia find it difficult to remember some rules of a simple game, or just drive to the once familiar place.
7. Difficulty in understanding time
A challenge may occur when making associations with the future, present, or the past. People with dementia may fail to understand why something isn’t happening at the moment and being told that something will happen the next day might seem odd for them.
8. Having difficulty recognizing places
Sometimes for the victims of dementia, even being at home may seem unfamiliar place. They may not recognize some places, and they may realize that they are in a certain place without being aware how they got there.
9. Experiencing problems with writing
Another sign of dementia can be the problem with writing. Just like the difficulty finding the right word, difficulty may occur with choosing the right word when writing. This will make some individuals job of writing more challenging and even frustrating.
10. Becoming repetitive
If a person starts repeating something they have already said a few times earlier is another symptom of dementia. They may also feel the urge to ask a question they already asked or answered earlier. Possible repetitions may also occur when shaving, combing hair or brushing teeth.
11. Trying to avoid change
When people suffering from dementia realize that a change may occur, they get frightened. This usually applies to some aspects of their experiences like getting lost.
12. Not being able to follow a storyline
The last sign that may indicate dementia is difficulty in focusing and concentration. Usually these individuals are unable to follow a storyline, either while watching a movie or during an event someone is relating.