The early warning signs of dementia can be difficult to detect and are often mistaken for normal age-related memory loss. However, some seniors are aware something more serious is developing, even before getting diagnosed, and they find ways to adapt and keep their symptoms hidden. The staff at Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of home care in Warren, discusses 4 warning signs that indicate your elderly loved one might be hiding dementia symptoms.
1. Avoiding Favorite Activities
Whether it is doing the daily crossword puzzle, meeting with friends for a weekly card game, or engaging in a familiar hobby, seniors with dementia often give up activities they used to enjoy. Your loved one may find it too frustrating to remember the steps involved in activities that used to be second nature, and he or she may even be embarrassed or afraid family members or Warren caregivers will notice the increased confusion.
2. Relying on Others to Make Excuses
Spouses are often the first people to realize something is not quite right with their loved ones. To compensate, spouses sometimes suddenly take over tasks their loved ones would normally perform. For example, your mother may begin handling the finances when your father used to pay all of the bills, or your father may step in to a finish a sentence when your mother appears confused and offer excuses to cover for the mistakes she makes.
3. Denying the Symptoms Are Present
When asked about their forgetfulness, seniors in the early stages of cognitive impairment may try to insist they are fine or make excuses for their behavior. Your loved one may attribute the memory loss to aging or try to brush off his or her mistakes or confusion as a joke. Denial is usually a sign a senior realizes something is not right and is trying to convince him or herself otherwise.
4. Keeping Secrets
Most seniors are afraid admitting they have dementia means they will lose any semblance of independence. As a result, they keep their condition a secret. Some even employ memory aids or other mechanisms as a way of hiding their increased confusion and forgetfulness. Some studies indicate individuals with a high intellect and education may be able to cover up their problems longer because their high degree of knowledge makes it more difficult to notice minor slips.
If you suspect your loved one is developing dementia and want to help him or her manage the condition, turn to Home Care Assistance. Our proprietary Cognitive Therapeutics Method is designed to help slow cognitive decline and delay the onset of dementia by encouraging seniors to engage in mentally stimulating activities. In addition to Alzheimer’s and dementia care Warren families trust, we also offer respite and live-in care services as well as specialized Parkinson’s and stroke care. For more information on our in-home care services, call one of our knowledgeable Care Managers at 908.450.9400 to schedule a complimentary consultation.