“Mom is forgetting everything these days. She even forgot my birthday!”
“Dad got lost driving home last week.”
These are comments that we often hear from family members who reach out to BrightStar Care in Orlando. Such observations are routinely made by adult children who are coming to grips with the reality of their parents aging. They begin questioning what signs should be taken as a true indication of early onset of dementia versus those that are considered to be a normal part of the aging process. The staff at our home health care in Orlando agency understands that these differences are difficult to discern as the lines are often blurred.
Many people are under the misconception that the sole sign of dementia is memory loss. It is important to know that part of the normal aging process allows for mom to forget something once in awhile, but it’s quite another if mom begins missing appointments, asks the same question repeatedly, or has become dependent on “cheats” to help her remember. Oftentimes, people are embarrassed that they have become forgetful and become adept at “cheating” to disguise their inability to recall things. Technology has advanced “cheats” to include the use of electronic devices for storing and recalling information quickly.
Subtle changes in personality are now believed to be early indicators of the onset of dementia. What often remains unreported to physicians and healthcare professionals are comments such as: “Mom just doesn’t seem the same” or “Dad loses his temper so easily these days.” These types of personality changes are usually gradual and are often overlooked as signs of dementia because they aren’t memory-related. Rare instances of atypical behavior can be attributed to the normal aging process, and, of course, everyone can have a bad day, but the increase in frequency and duration of behavioral changes are noteworthy. Discuss them with your loved one’s healthcare provider.
Another indication that things may be changing is your elderly loved one’s desire to discuss personal issues in inappropriate situations or their lack of tact. Their ability to filter conversation seems to be diminishing. This may be considered a prelude to dementia.
No change in memory, personality, or behavior should be considered insignificant when the onset of dementia is a concern. As a leader in home health care in Orlando, BrightStar Care is here to help you provide the best for your elderly loved one. We are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week to assist you by providing the widest range of services available for elder care in the Central Florida area. Call us at 407-877-0720. You don’t have to do this alone.