If you notice your aging parent misplacing some objects or occasionally forgetting names, this usually isn’t a matter of concern. However, if they show significant signs of memory loss, such as trouble remembering if they ate or the address to a location they frequently commute to, these might be indicators of a bigger problem.
Memory loss that’s not a normal part of aging is often associated with dementia. Understanding the warning signs of dementia is essential as they could indicate that your loved one needs specialized memory care.
1. Significant Memory Loss
The inability to remember things is one of the most prevalent indicators of dementia. Some common signs include the inability to spell a word, trouble remembering a close family member, and forgetting their birth date. When memory loss becomes more pronounced and starts to affect one daily life, it could be a warning sign that your aging parent needs assistance.
If your aging parent suffers from memory loss, seeking memory care is important, as specialized care may help slow down the disease’s progression. Memory care homes have the necessary resources and skilled staff to help seniors with memory loss problems. Look into memory care facilities for seniors that have high staffing to resident ratios and specialized nursing care.
2. Trouble with Communication
An individual with dementia may eventually face difficulties communicating with people around them. They may start using the wrong words, responding slowly, or reducing the level of communication. The inability to communicate effectively or keep up with a conversation could signify a decline in cognitive abilities.
Moving into a memory care home where specialized staff members can encourage participation in memory-engaging activities and socialization will allow your parent to communicate more effectively.
3. Changes in Household or Personal Cleanliness
If your loved one isn’t taking care of their home or neglecting personal hygiene, they may need professional help. Look for warning signs, such as an unkept home, dirty clothes or dishes, or body odor. The first step you need to take is to ensure if these are symptoms of dementia or another condition, such as depression. If the doctor confirms that this is a sign of dementia, seek memory care immediately to help your loved one live a better life.
4. Behavioral changes
A person’s brain goes through various changes when they get diagnosed with dementia. This could lead to behavioral changes, such as agitation, confusion, or anxiousness. You may also notice them withdrawing themselves from social situations and isolating themselves. These are warning signs indicating the need for specialized care.
5. Inability to Manage Medication
Many aging adults rely on medication for various aspects of their health, such as blood sugar or blood pressure control. Each medication plays a different role in one’s life, and missing them or overdosing could cause various health problems, so it is best to eliminate that risk. If you notice your loved one skipping medication or taking them too many times a day, moving them into a care home is essential.
It can be challenging to watch your aging parent go through various symptoms of dementia loss. But the sooner you identify the warning signs and help them find care, the better the chances of helping them live better lives.