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Early Signs of Dementia: Things You Need to Know

Jun 05, 2019

Dementia Patients

Early Signs of Dementia: Things You Need to Know

Dementia denotes a group of symptoms which affect memory, thoughts, and communication. Dementia typically impacts older adults and occurs due to damaged brain cells that are not able to communicate effectively with each other. Alzheimer’s disease is the most common reason for dementia, accounting for around 60 to 80 percent of cases, yet memory loss is not the only symptom of dementia.

If any older adult you know is experiencing any dementia symptoms, it can be an alarming situation.

Here is a list of early signs of dementia you can follow:

Memory Loss

One of the most common signs of dementia is that your loved one may not remember recent incidences, such as what they ate in the morning or where they have kept their things. These are the symptoms of short term memory loss.

Problem with Words

It may be problematic for them to find the right word in the middle of a conversation. Sometimes, they cannot call things by their correct names.

Mood Swings

Dementia can affect the judgment of a person and can make them feel irritated, fearful, and anxious. Constant mood swings may become a common occurrence.

Trouble Handling Complex Tasks

People with dementia may face challenges in completing everyday tasks which involve motor skills and complexity. For example, driving to a specific place or playing a game which has a lot of rules.

Emotional Isolation

In the early stages of illness, people often lose interest in their hobbies. They may not want to go out and spend time with friends or family. Eventually, they can become emotionally secluded.


With faded memory and clouded judgment, dementia can trigger confusion in your loved ones’ mind. They may find it difficult to understand simple things, such as how they reached a particular place, or why they are there.

Being Repetitive

People with dementia develop short term memory loss, which makes them forget recent events, and therefore become repetitive in their routine tasks. For example, they can shave multiple times or ask for the same meal more than once.

Inability to Adapt to New Surroundings

Usually, people with dementia have problems visiting new places, meeting new people, and adjusting to new surroundings. New activities can make them feel fearful and on edge, so they tend to stick to the same routine.

Difficulties with Visual Images and Spatial Orientation

In the early stages of dementia, some people have vision problems. They may have difficulty reading and judging distance. They may forget regularly used directions or familiar places.


With dementia, symptoms start slowly and get worse over time. Being able to identify the early signs of dementia will help you provide better care for your loved one. If you or an aging adult is experiencing memory problems or related complications, schedule a medical consultation right away to determine the cause. Professional evaluation, proper home care, and medication may slow down or improve the symptoms of dementia.

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