Early signs of dementia and how to spot them in your loved ones

With age, many people can experience a general loss of their ability to remember things, make decisions, and sometimes even think rationally. These are all signs that someone might be living with dementia.

There are various forms of dementia such as Alzheimer’s disease, vascular dementia, Huntington’s disease, and more, all with different levels of intensity. 944,000 people in the UK are living with dementia. This number is set to increase to 1 million by 2030. So, it’s important we know what the symptoms are so we can be as prepared as possible . 

Dementia is very common among people in their mid-60s and later. However, it can sometimes be seen in people as young as 30. Although dementia is very common, it is not a normal sign of ageing. Thus, it is very important that people know the symptoms so that they can act in time to get the best care and support for their loved ones.

In order to provide the best care and support for a loved one living with dementia, it’s important to be aware of the early signs of dementia and how to recognise them.

At Crouched Friars, we  provide care for those living with dementia and take great pride in ensuring that our care is tailored to each resident. 

We have put together a list of early signs of dementia to watch out for in your loved ones.

 

Difficulty performing everyday tasks

 

A person living with dementia may slowly lose the ability to perform tasks that they could easily do earlier in their life. This could start with more complex tasks such as playing a board game or doing their finances. But slowly, they could also start having difficulty doing everyday tasks such as making their tea or putting on their shoes.

As the condition advances, the person may lose the ability to perform familiar and everyday tasks.

 

Confusion 

 

One of the most common early signs of dementia is confusion. People with dementia may find it difficult to recognise people around them, forget the day or month or be confused about where they are.

They may also start confusing different times and places. It’s also common to start regularly misplacing things like keys and mobile phones, etc. 

What you may notice is that this state of confusion only increases with time. And so, it is best to get help as soon as possible.

 

Difficulty in rational thinking and planning

 

Someone with dementia could find it difficult to plan things or even think rationally sometimes. For example, they may have trouble planning their day or even understanding and processing what is happening around them.

This could also lead to them becoming easily irritated or annoyed.

 

Frequent behavioural or personality changes  

 

Frequent mood changes and sudden changes in behaviour are a common sign of dementia. One example of this is repetition. They may start repeating daily tasks obsessively or even repeat words and sentences in a conversation. 

This is quite a noticeable symptom which you can pick up easily in a family member or friend.

 

Difficulty in finding the right words and learning and remembering new words


With their memory slowly fading, it becomes increasingly difficult for people with dementia to learn and remember new things. They may have difficulty remembering a new word they have learnt or the name of someone they’ve recently met. Sometimes, they may also find it hard to remember certain words or phrases during a conversation.

 

Apathy and withdrawal

 

Given all the changes that are happening, it is quite common for someone with dementia to feel apathetic or depressed. They may withdraw themselves from social settings, give up hobbies they enjoyed, and even stop going out any longer. Some may stop spending time with family and friends and disengage in activities or have fun. You may also notice an onset of depression in them.

 

People with early onset of vascular dementia are more likely to be aware of their condition than those with other types of dementia such as Alzheimer’s disease. They may thus experience depression and apathy as explained by Alzheimer’s society

If you notice these signs and symptoms of dementia in your loved ones early on, you can be better equipped to get help and support for them.

care worker with resident at dementia care home

At Crouched Friars, we have an excellent team of care workers who are trained to provide care and support for those living with dementia. 

To know more about our dementia-related services, feel free to call us on 01206 572647 or email us at  info@crouchedfriars.co.uk.

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