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Recognizing the Early Signs of Dementia


Posted on December 16, 2009 by DementiaGuide

Recognizing the Early Signs of Dementia

A list of symptoms often associated with the early signs of dementia

Recognizing the early signs of dementia can be difficult as many of them can also be attributed to normal aging, stress or depression. It's important to be aware of the early signs of dementia as it can be a monumental help for early diagnosis and treatment. Here's a list of symptoms that are often associated with the early signs of dementia. If your loved one experiences any of these symptoms, it is important to consult a physician for a proper diagnosis.

COGNITIVE CHANGES

Difficulty or issues in any of the following cognitive areas are early signs of dementia should be brought to a physician's attention immediately.

  • Memory loss is the most common symptom in forms of dementia. While occasionally forgetting names or appointments is normal, for a person showing early signs of dementia, forgetfulness will occur with increasing frequency.
  • Difficulty with Familiar Tasks is another symptom and one of the early signs of dementia. Everyday tasks can seem unfamiliar to someone displaying the early signs of dementia.
  • Language problems: a person in the early stages of dementia will forget simple words or use unusual terms.
  • Disorientation: a person with early signs of dementia will be unaware of their surroundings even in familiar places.
  • Difficulty with Abstract Thinking: Complex mental tasks or ones that require several steps may become difficult to perform and is on of the early signs of dementia.
  • Poor Judgment: An inability to make sound decisions based on information is another possible symptom of dementia.
  • Putting Things in the Wrong Place is another early warning sign is placing objects in inappropriate or nonsensical places, such as putting keys in the refrigerator.

BEHAVIORAL CHANGES

Major shifts in personality, behavior and mood or energy are also early signs of dementia.
  • Personality: A noticeable shift in personality can be an early sign of dementia. Sometimes personality changes are hard to pinpoint, but take note if the person isn't acting in accordance with his or her normal patterns of behavior.
  • Behavior or Mood: Persons showing the early signs of dementia can suffer from rapidly changing moods, resulting in an individual experiencing various emotions ranging from rage to sadness and complete calm within the course of a few minutes.
  • Passivity, sleeping for prolonged periods of time, and sitting for hours watching TV or otherwise not speaking with anyone are other early warning signs.

Early detection of dementia is important. Dementia is a symptom of multiple diseases and injuries and noticing early signs of dementia is critical to getting an accurate diagnosis and the correct treatment.

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Last updated April 17, 2014
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