What to look for?
Low Mood | Common Signs
- Is easily tearful or upset
- Has crying spells
- Often feels "down" or "low"
- thinks and talks negatively (e.g. says "you would be better off without me")
- Feels hopeless about own situation
- Makes negative comments about themselves; feels of little value
- Has less interest in other people and the world around them
- Talks of death and suicide
- Stays in bed most of the day
- Has a poor appetite
- Prefers to be alone
- Has been clinically diagnosed with depression
Low Mood | General Description
Most types of dementia can affect the brain chemicals which are responsible for maintaining mood. The combination of these changes in mood, knowledge of having the disease - and as well as having friends and family pass away, can lead to feelings of sadness or even depression . These feelings may translate into behavioural changes such as loss of appetite, withdrawal from friends and family, or crying episodes. Many symptoms of Alzheimer's disease can amplify low mood or depression, such as memory loss, inability to communicate and decreased functioning. Loss of freedom, or independence as experienced when their driver's license is revoked and consistently having to rely on a caregiver also can cause unhappiness or loss of ambition.
In Frontotemporal dementia , low mood, apathy or indifference toward events in the person's surrounding environment is often a feature of the illness. This can be caused by a marked reduction in initiative, and lack of motivation. In these people, low mood may appear to be depression, but they do not experience sad feelings. People may show shallow affect (flat facial expression or lack of emotional response).
As Frontotemporal dementia is characterized by personality and behaviour changes, the opposite of low mood, we'll call high mood can occur. In these situations, the person will present in an inappropriate jocular manner by singing, dancing, clapping their hands or recite phrases repeatedly. Depression is common in Parkinson's disease dementia. In Lewy body dementia, the presence of depression is a supportive feature for the diagnosis .
If this symptom is affecting your daily life, SymptomGuideTM can help you understand and communicate with your doctor and family members. You can start using SymptomGuideTM now by creating your individualized profile.