Mom seems to be a little bewildered lately. Recently, she used salt in place of sugar in her popular peanut butter cookie recipe. She referred to the puppy by my sister’s name. And she misplaced her purse, only to find it in the medicine cabinet. Is it possible she’s developing Alzheimer’s disease or some other sort of dementia?
Although there are many other possible reasons for dementia-like signs or symptoms such as these – medication side effects or depression, for instance – these types of red flags help doctors determine whether dementia may be the primary cause:
- Mental functional loss – determined by speaking with both the affected person and the ones closest to her, in conjunction with cognitive testing.
- Changes in formerly mastered abilities – evaluating skills that were previously efficiently implemented, but are now a struggle.
- Challenges with tasks of everyday life – assessed through worries mentioned by loved ones.
- Other physical conditions – evaluating underlying situations which could cause delirium (which imitates dementia), such as bacterial infections, thyroid issues, electrolyte imbalances, and more.
- Mental history – a detailed overview of mental problems that can come into play, such as depression or schizophrenia.
If your older family member has been diagnosed with dementia, speak to Midnight Sun Home Care by calling 907-677-7890 or by filling out our online contact form. Our thoughtful, experienced dementia health care team in Anchorage, Alaska is standing by to help.