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Know the Warnings: Diagnosing Dementia

By April 8, 2015Dementia

It’s very difficult to diagnose dementia. Only trained professional doctors who have tons of experience in this field have all the required tools to make that diagnosis. However, there are specific warning signs that show it may be time to take mom or dad to the hospital to get checked out. It’s scary and unfortunate but the sooner you know if your loved one has dementia, the sooner you can prevent their cognitive decline. Below please find some telling warning signs for dementia.

Familiar Tasks are Difficult
Does your mother or father have a specific meal they like to prepare time and time again? Is it their speciality that they cook to perfection each time they make it? Most people have that one specialized meal that they knock out of the park. However, if you’ve noticed them struggling with this activity, it could be a sign of dementia. Having difficulty with a familiar task can alert you that something may be wrong, and it’s not just with cooking.

Perhaps you and your loved one have a favorite game you like to play. Are they struggling with remembering the rules? Difficulties with a loved one’s favorite activities like cooking and playing games are good telltale signs that their cognitive ability might be in decline.

Trouble with Time
A common symptom of dementia is that the individual has trouble remembering the day of the week in addition to dates in general. They may get confused thinking it’s the weekend, but eventually figure out that it’s Monday. Another common problem is time of day. It confuses them, especially if it’s late evening or nighttime.

If a person is having trouble keeping track of time, they’ll only truly understand what’s happening right in front of them. They won’t be able to remember conversations that happened an hour ago. Don’t let the frustration build. Instead, take them to go get checked out.

Trouble with Speaking
If you notice your loved one is having a difficult time coming up with the right words while speaking, they might need to be tested. Trouble with vocabulary is another common sign of dementia or Alzheimer’s disease. However, do not be alarmed if you happened to notice it one time. We all have trouble, on occasion, picking the right word. Although, if you’re noticing it more and more it may be something serious.

A lack of vocabulary is frustrating to the person having trouble. It alienates the individual and draws them away from conversation. If the person becomes withdrawn because of their difficulty speaking, it may lead to loneliness, depression, and other mental illnesses. If you suspect your loved one is suffering from possible dementia, take them to a physician early on. It can’t be defeated but you can slow its progression, providing more valuable years to your love one’s life.

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