How do you know if your mom has dementia?
The holidays are here and shopping, baking, checking our lists, and spending time with family become a priority. If you are like me, my list includes checking on how mom is doing. She seems a little more forgetful and I have been keeping an eye on her. But how do I know if it is something more then normal aging?
Dementia is a term that describes a variety of symptoms affecting a person’s cognitive functioning, including their ability to think, remember, and reason. There are 10 typical early signs of dementia to watch for in an aging parent. For a person to receive a diagnosis, they would usually experience two or more of these symptoms, and the symptoms would be severe enough to interfere with their daily life.
Mom makes the same holiday pie every year. This year it didn’t taste quite right. When I asked if she followed the recipe, she said that she has made it for so many years that she no longer needed a recipe. The truth is she could no longer follow the recipe. Now, not only is she forgetting our conversations, but she is also having difficulty completing familiar tasks. I think it is time to schedule an appointment with her physician.
If you are concerned about an aging parent or grandparent, review the 10 warning signs checklist provided by the Alzheimer’s Association and listed below. If you are still concerned, reach out to their physician because early detection and treatment can improve their quality of life.
10 Warning Signs of Alzheimer’s or Another Dementia
1. Memory loss that disrupts daily life
2. Challenges in planning or solving problems
3. Difficulty completing familiar tasks
4. Confusion with time or place
5. Trouble understanding visual images and spatial relationships
6. New problems with words in speaking or writing
7. Misplacing things and losing the ability to retrace steps
8. Decreased or poor judgment
9. Withdrawal from work or social activities
10. Changes in mood and personality