What Is The Difference Normal Forgetfulness and Dementia
As aging progresses, individuals typically begin to experience slight changes in their intellect. Examples could include a modest decline in spontaneous word finding (taking longer to get words out), along with a reduced ability focus on multiple tasks. Aging adults may notice the speed with which they process information gradually slows down over time, which causes a delay in recalling names, dates or events that happened in the past. These and similar instances are most likely due to normal aging.
In contrast, individuals who are unable to recall more recent details of an event could be showing the beginning signs of some cognitive deficits. Among common causes for concern: frequently misplacing objects, not knowing the name of objects, forgetting names and places without recall, having difficulty using the right words or becoming lost in familiar surroundings.
Could Changes In Your Loved One Be Due To Symptoms Of Dementia
It can often be difficult for those experiencing memory issues to recognize their problems while others around them are troubled by the changes – while an older adult experiencing normal forgetfulness or “senior moments” generally is aware of their own lack of recall. Most memory issues develop gradually, worsening over time, so keep in mind that if a sudden change in memory loss occurs, it could be related to another medical condition which may need immediate attention.
Experts typically suggest that when memory loss prevents someone from performing daily tasks and accustomed roles in life, it’s time to consult a physician for further evaluation. Dementia is a clinical diagnosis so a clinician needs to merge all of the information from the patient examination, family history, lab results and brain scans in order to make a diagnosis.
Caregivers can watch for signs of the following, which could be indicators of dementia:
• Disheveled appearance or grooming
• Neglected hygiene or cleanliness
• Increase in incontinence
• Trouble with food preparation
• Changes in appetite and food preferences
• Alcohol abuse
• Loss of reasoning and judgment skills
• Problems with managing finances
• Stacks of mail and unpaid bills
• Unwatered or overwatered plants
• Pets being neglected or overfed/underfed
• Lack of interest in friends or activities
• Forgetfulness or loss of short-term memory
• Differences in sleep habits
• Inability to safely manage medications
If your loved one is showing several of the above signs, you should consider seeking help from medical professionals. You’ll begin to get answers and may decide to seek assistance for your loved one with memory loss. At The Club at Boynton Beach, you’ll find quality dementia care in a health- and wellness-focused community – where your family can feel confident in the safety, security and fulfillment of your loved one.