The thought of your loved one having dementia is one of the most terrifying situations that you could find yourself in. There are some symptoms of dementia that most people are familiar with: confusion and forgetfulness. When your loved one starts showing these signs, it can be alarming, because this level of forgetfulness or confusion is not a natural part of the aging process.
Before you immediately decide to search for affordable memory care in Oceanside, it might be important for you to try and make a better determination if your loved one really needs it.
The World Health Organization believes that as many as 50 million people worldwide have dementia, with a large majority of those diagnoses coming from Alzheimer’s patients. They aren’t the same disease, but their symptoms and treatment seem to be similar. Additionally, the WHO estimates that as the “baby boomer” generation continues to get older, that this number will only climb.
But other than the confusion and forgetfulness, what are some of the symptoms of dementia that you should be on the lookout for? Here are a few:
1.) Your senior is having a tough time writing.
From birthday cards to grocery lists, a more difficult time writing can be one of the symptoms of onset dementia. Writing is one of the things that becomes more difficult to do, because dementia makes it extremely difficult to gather your thoughts and express them concisely and coherently. If, when you go to visit your loved one, you find half-formed checks, incomplete grocery lists, or half-typed or incoherent emails, then that might be a sign that your loved one is beginning to suffer from dementia.
2.) They’re having an increasing amount of problems with their money.
Like writing, bookkeeping and budgeting also requires a great deal of constant concentration to keep on top of. Along those lines, paying bills and making sure that they don’t fall by the wayside is another big red flag that your senior may need a little additional help.
It’s pretty common for our senior citizens to fall prey to scams from predators seeking gift cards, large checks, jewelry, or other random get rich quick schemes. As a result, it may be hard to identify when your senior is having a difficult time because of dementia or simply because of their age.
Try to get more information if you notice your loved one’s money dwindling for an unknown reason. Have they purchased something that they can’t really afford and don’t really need? Are they loaning money to near strangers? Have they signed up for magazine subscriptions, “box of the month” clubs, or any other out of character service? This inability to keep track of their money (or the resulting gullibility) may be a sign that they need some affordable memory care in Oceanside services.
3.) Your loved one is acting differently than they have before.
A sharp personality switch can be a major glaring sign that something is not quite right with your senior loved one. If a normally affable family member has suddenly become short-tempered, quick to anger, anxious, or worried, then this is a cause for concern. Not only is it shocking to witness, but it can also be a sign of dementia.
Oftentimes, this is something that can go hand in hand with the forgetfulness or confusion that is one of the more prominent signs of dementia or Alzheimer’s. Your family member may be paranoid or angry because they don’t recognize you or your other family members when they come to visit. Or, if they see another family friend and don’t recall inviting them over, it may lead to them being angry and frustrated.
Something that isn’t often discussed is that dementia or Alzheimer’s can also often lead to a lack of sympathy or empathy from your loved one. Speaking of a difficult time in your life or having them witness something terrible on the news can be hard, but having them not react or not realize the severity of what they’ve witnessed can be shocking. This type of behavior can be hurtful to family and friends if not immediately understood or addressed.
This is something that you should immediately discuss with both your loved one and their doctor. If you’re wondering if affordable memory care services in Oceanside are needed, this is a good sign that you might need to start.
4.) Your loved one is withdrawing from their social activities.
When you’re not always completely aware of what’s going on around you, the thought of going out with friends, or to church, or even just out to lunch can be overwhelming. If you’ve noticed your senior starting to withdraw from their social circle, then this is a big red flag that maybe they’re struggling with the onset of dementia.
This withdrawal can show itself in many ways: not wanting to go out to lunch with friends, staying away from Bible studies or other groups that they’ve always attended, or even stopping volunteer work. If you’ve noticed that your loved one has put a great effort into avoiding friends and commitments that they normally really look forward to, then it might be time to speak with a doctor.
In short, realizing that a loved one may be struggling more than you once believed is a tough pill to swallow. Sometimes memory care services are the best option, but it’s also one that you may have never considered before.
Something that’s important to remember is that there are all kinds of support systems out there for caregivers and loved ones of those suffering from dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. Countless resources exist if you’re just willing to take a look. And, if you’re not sure if this is something that you can handle on your own, be sure to speak with your senior loved one’s healthcare provider to help you locate some affordable memory care in Oceanside services to help ease the burden you may feel.