Dementia is a term used to describe symptoms that can be caused by a wide variety of cognitive disorders ranging from Parkinson’s to Alzheimer’s disease. While some of the most common symptoms involve memory loss, seniors with dementia can also experience a myriad of physical issues. Here are a few early signs of dementia family caregivers should keep an eye out for.
1. Poor Hygiene Habits
Losing interest in personal hygiene is a clear sign something is impacting an individual’s mental or emotional health. If your loved one has suddenly stopped caring about hygiene and appearance, speak with his or her doctor about this issue. The doctor will most likely suggest a brain scan or recommend you schedule an appointment with a mental health specialist.
If your elderly loved one has been diagnosed with dementia, trust in the Bethlehem dementia care experts at Home Care Assistance to help him or her manage the condition while continuing to live at home. In addition to high-quality dementia care, we also offer specialized Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, and stroke care.
2. Repeating Questions
Everyone repeats themselves at various times, but this unusual behavior shouldn’t be an everyday occurrence. During the early stages of dementia, seniors often forget the questions they recently asked and what the answers were, and they might begin to tell the same stories over and over again. Repetition isn’t necessarily the result of a serious health condition, but you should make sure this symptom doesn’t get worse.
3. Difficulty Doing Simple Math
Even though math can be challenging for older adults, your loved one shouldn’t suddenly lose the ability to do simple arithmetic. Having difficulty tracking finances is a common symptom of Alzheimer’s disease, and you might need to immediately step in to prevent long-term damage to your loved one’s savings. If your loved one is diagnosed with a dementia-related disorder, consider assigning someone to manage his or her finances in the coming years.
4. Getting Lost in Familiar Places
Most seniors should be able to navigate to and from familiar places such as their friends’ homes or their favorite restaurants. As dementia slowly damages the brain cells, seniors might get lost while running errands or even in their own homes. Getting lost can be dangerous, and you will most likely need to start considering in-home care services in the near future.
Not every senior has the same care needs, which means they don’t all need the same home care services. Bethlehem families can rely on Home Care Assistance to provide individualized care plans to meet your elderly loved one’s unique care needs. Our holistic Balanced Care Method was designed to help seniors focus on healthy lifestyle habits such as eating nutritious foods, exercising regularly, and maintaining strong social ties, and our Cognitive Therapeutics Method offers mentally stimulating activities that can stave off cognitive decline and delay the onset of dementia.
5. Poor Judgment
A logical senior who used to carefully weigh his or her options shouldn’t suddenly start making poor life decisions. Many dementia-related disorders can damage the brain lobes that allow people to make rational decisions and adhere to societal norms. Some seniors with dementia fall for clear scams, while others spend money on frivolous items they don’t need.
6. Not Being Able to Follow Directions
Following directions activates multiple areas of the brain at the same time. When one of those areas becomes damaged, following simple instructions could become difficult. Your loved one might no longer be able to follow a recipe or meet at a specific time without getting confused.
Seniors living with dementia can benefit from professional in-home care. Find out how a Bethlehem, PA, caregiver can help your senior loved one enjoy a higher quality of life by reaching out to Home Care Assistance. All of our professional respite and live-in caregivers are trained in comprehensive Alzheimer’s, dementia, Parkinson’s, and stroke care, and they can also assist seniors with basic daily tasks like exercise, cooking, bathing, and light housekeeping. To hire a professionally trained caregiver for your senior loved one, give us a call at 484-350-3874 today.