If you are worried about an aging loved one’s memory, chances are that you have considered whether they might be struggling with dementia or Alzheimer’s disease. Even though you should tell your doctor if you are concerned about your parent’s memory, there are some factors that you can keep an eye on to help detect the disease.
Behavior #1 – Daily Struggles With Thinking Or Memory
It is perfectly normal for adults to have a temporary lapse in memory here and there. However, it is a good idea to be aware if there is a daily thinking or memory problem. This is going to help you determine whether these are isolated incidents or something that occurs regularly.
Behavior #2 – Problems With Commitments Or Appointments
Again, a single missed appointment is certainly not cause for concern. However, if it becomes a consistent problem it is important to start documenting this and determine how bad the issue is getting.
Behavior #3 – Difficulty With Managing Finances
While it might be difficult if you are not traditionally involved in their finances, problems with taxes, expenses or bills might be indicative of a memory problem.
Behavior #4 – Forgetting The Month Or Year
Do you notice that your loved one has problems keeping track of the current month or even the current year? If this happens more than once, it is important to make a specific note of it.
Behavior #5 – A Difficulty Understanding New Things
If you notice that your loved one has a problem with learning how to use a new gadget (think a new smartphone or a new television remote) it could be indicative of a serious memory problem. If you are concerned, make sure that you write down what they have difficulty adapting to and how they attempted to deal with the situation.
Behavior #6 – Repeating Oneself – Repeating Oneself
It is normal for an older someone to repeat the same stories. However, if you notice that you are getting the same questions over and over, it might mean that they have a problem remembering the most recent times they discussed the situation.
Behavior #7 – Reduced Interest In Leisure Activities
Perhaps you have noticed that your parent does not seem as involved or interested in their hobbies as before. Even though this is not necessarily indicative of a memory problem, it is something that you should write down if you already have reasons to suspect that they might be struggling with memory-related issues.
Behavior #8 – Poor Overall Judgment
Perhaps you have found that your parents use increasingly poor judgement to make decisions. Perhaps you notice excessive or unusual spending. Perhaps they are less concerned about their own safety than the people around them. Write down the concerns that you have noticed in order to keep track of this behavior.