Dementia is the common name of many cognitive problems, from memory loss to difficulty reasoning. People might experience different levels of dementia, but the condition can seriously interfere with their life and everyday activities.
The thing with dementia is that it’s progressive; you don’t just wake up with dementia one day; you develop it over time. So, how do you know if you’re experiencing dementia symptoms? That’s the real question here. Well, there are a few easily recognizable symptoms, mainly when you talk.
Be mindful of changes in yourself and pay attention to what others say about your behavior. If you notice the following symptoms while talking, they might be signs of early dementia.
Difficulty Solving Problems
If you’re not as sharp and witty as you used to be and start to have trouble solving the newspaper’s crossword puzzle, you might have an early sign of dementia. Problem-solving is a basic cognitive function, and it covers many things, from following a recipe to figuring out what’s wrong with your car.
And although these tasks can be simple or quite complicated, you might find yourself having a hard time solving them, and that’s not a good sign. You need not be a genius or have a solution for every problem, but you must at least have the ability to put your thoughts together to complete a task. Try playing board games with your family and see how you feel.
Finding the Right Words
Some people are more fluent than others, and we all have the sensation of not finding the right words during a conversation. Of course, if it happens too often, there’s a chance you’re suffering cognitive deficit. The part of the brain in charge of talking is one of the first to experience deterioration by dementia.
If you don’t seem to find the right words, it might be an early sign of dementia. You’ll notice this while talking to your peers, friends and family. They might see it before you do, by the way, so encourage feedback. If someone feels you’re not talking like you used to, then there might be a problem with your brain.
Remembering People’s Names
Memory is significantly affected in people with dementia, and you’ll notice memory difficulty if you have a hard time remembering people’s names, even those close to you. This will also apply to telephone numbers and addresses.
No one’s memory is perfect, and we all forget stuff. Still, some things should be hard to forget, like your family member’s names! And this is frustrating, to say the least. And although memory can be trained and kept in shape with exercise, cognitive loss is hard to stop. At least try to detect it soon and talk to an expert. Dementia is not the end of your life; you just have to treat it and slow brain deterioration.
Mood swings, bursts of anger, paranoia and anxiety are signs of dementia, especially when not provoked. We all have our bad days, but people with dementia might feel their loved ones are plotting against them and mean them harm.
If you don’t feel like yourself and have been having problems with those close to you because of your attitude, you might be losing your mind, literally. And no, not all mood swings are symptoms of dementia, but some are, especially if they’re recurrent.
The next time you’re feeling cranky, keep your cool, breathe and assess if you’re mad for no reason. If you are, talk to your doctor and express your concerns, you might be experiencing early signs of dementia.
Check Yourself Every Six Months
The best way of preventing dementia is to live a healthy, active and happy life surrounded by your loved ones. We all experience cognitive loss one way or another, but that doesn’t mean we can’t enjoy our lives.
The good news? If you detect early signs of dementia in time, you and your doctor can do something about it. Keep your hopes up!