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What to look for?

Telephone Use | Common Signs

  • Misdials numbers recalled from memory
  • Uses a phone list or address book to dial previously memorized numbers
  • Misdials phone numbers even when referring to phone list or address book
  • Frequently misdirects calls (e.g. intends to call son but dials hairdresser instead)
  • Only able to place calls if numbers are preprogrammed
  • Is reluctant or refuses to answer the telephone when it rings
  • Is reluctant or refuses to talk on the telephone
  • Will talk on the telephone but does not initiate calls to others
  • Hangs up abruptly during telephone conversations
  • Forgets to write down or verbally relay phone messages
  • Records or relays phone messages incompletely or incorrectly
  • Has trouble with or cannot use special functions (e.g. voice mail, speed dial buttons, etc)
Telephone Use | General Description

The person you care for might have difficulty operating the phone. This includes problems dialling or pushing the buttons, hanging up incorrectly or talking into the wrong end of the phone. Their memory loss can also contribute to problems with telephone use. They often cannot remember phone numbers, cannot remember who they are talking to, or puts down the phone and forgets that they were engaged in a conversation. The person you care for may no longer identify the sound of the phone ringing or may refuse to answer the phone.

Patients with certain types of Frontotemporal dementia often are able to continue to use the telephone for some time. Even so, like people with mild dementia who still use the telephone, there is concern about the potential for telephone fraud and telemarketer harassment. The caregiver might find it useful to discretely supervise access to the telephone to limit this threat.

If this symptom is affecting your daily life, SymptomGuideTM can help you better understand and communicate with others involved. Start using SymptomGuideTM now and create your individualized profile.

See Also:
Symptom Library > Memory & Language > Memory of Recent Events
Symptom Library > Personality Changes > Interest/Initiative (lack of)
Symptom Library > Everyday Activities > Operating Gadgets/Appliances
Symptom Library > Physical Changes > Sensory Input
Symptom Library > Thinking & Judgment > Judgment
Symptom Library > Thinking & Judgment > Attention/Concentration (lack of)
About Dementia > Alzheimer's Disease > Memory
About Dementia > Alzheimer's Disease > Agnosia
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Last updated January 15, 2019
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