Early indicators of dementia are often vague and subtle, and in many cases, individuals don’t realize there is a health problem at all. Dementia symptoms are often ascribed to mere forgetfulness or absent-mindedness, but it is far more severe. It’s important to become familiar with the early warning signs of dementia, as early detection can lead to treatment at a much earlier stage than late detection. This can help to slow the progression of the disease and prevent more severe symptoms from cropping up. If you or a loved one has many of the early warning signs, it is best to get in contact with a doctor for an assessment. Even if you feel it’s nothing, it is better to double check than to risk worsening symptoms. Doctors will use a variety of different assessment techniques to rule out or confirm a dementia diagnosis. Let’s review the warning signs now.
One of the most common early symptoms of dementia is reduced concentration. Individuals may find themselves having more and more trouble focusing on tasks. This can be incredibly frustrating, as the ability to memorize information and learn new things is also greatly affected.
Book lovers may find they can’t read a paragraph without their attention wandering, or they have to read the same passage several times to absorb it. Individuals might have trouble paying attention to tasks of both the leisure and work variety. It’s normal to have periods when concentration on work is difficult, but if your focus is being severely impaired while doing hobbies you can usually manage, it is a good idea to talk to a doctor.
Of course, reduced concentration isn’t necessarily caused by dementia. A whole host of other conditions could be behind it, which is why a professional medical assessment is so critical. Depression and ADHD are two common psychological illnesses that cause a lack of concentration, while hormonal disorders like hypothyroidism might point to a physical cause.
Continue reading to learn what to watch for in personality.