0 Jobs

Job Shortlist

Apply to these jobs


Journal Essentials

Recognising the Early Indicators of Dementia

Written by

Mariapaula Arroyave

Date posted

29 November, 2023

Coyle Homecare are committed to educating people about the early indicators of dementia to increase understanding and recognition of the condition.

Since people are living longer, the number of individuals diagnosed with dementia is increasing. This complex and challenging condition affects millions of people worldwide. It typically affects older adults, but early signs can start to show ahead of a formal diagnosis. It's crucial to keep in mind that dementia is not an expected consequence of ageing.

In this article, we will be discussing what dementia is, four early signs to look out for, how to reduce the risk, and how to make a difference to those living with dementia.

What is Dementia?

Dementia is the loss of cognitive abilities, such as remembering, thinking, and reasoning, to the point where it interferes with day-to-day activities. This can cause changes to a person’s emotions and personality. This neurological condition has a significant effect on the family members and carers of the afflicted individuals as well as themselves.

Four Early Signs of Dementia

Detecting the early signs of dementia is vital for timely intervention and support. While dementia is a complex and progressive condition, several common symptoms can serve as early indicators. Here are four key signs to be aware of:

1. Subtle short term memory changes

This doesn’t necessarily mean forgetting what happened years ago, but more minor details such as:

  • Not being able to remember what they had for breakfast in the morning
  • Forgetting where they placed items
  • Struggling to remember why they entered a room

This is known as short-term memory loss.

2. Difficulty with routine tasks

A minor change in a person's ability to carry out everyday chores could be another early indicator of dementia. Usually, this begins with trouble with more difficult tasks, such as:

  • Completing a game with lots of rules
  • Following a recipe
  • Cooking
  • Managing finances
  • Driving to a familiar place
  • Struggling to do new things

3. Language and communication problems

Struggling with communication is another sign, this includes:

  • Trouble finding the right words
  • Repeating phrases
  • Struggling to follow in conversations

A person with dementia might replace words or forget simple ones, making them difficult to understand.

4. Changes in mood and personality

A person's mood can change, and they may easily become confused, suspicious, sad, fearful, or anxious. These moods can be triggered if their regular routine is changed or if they are encountered in unfamiliar situations.

Ways to Reduce Your Risk of Dementia

While some factors like aging and genetics are beyond our control, individuals have the power to influence their health through lifestyle choices. Many reports suggest "encouraging but inconclusive" evidence that adopting a healthier lifestyle can contribute to prevention.

Key factors include managing high blood pressure, regulating blood sugar levels, maintaining a nutritious diet, reducing alcohol consumption, and prioritising mental well-being. These choices can play a significant role in promoting overall health and disease prevention.

Want to make a difference in the lives of those living with Dementia?

To make life easier for people living with dementia, it is helpful to establish a structured routine, providing a sense of predictability and reducing anxiety. Communication should be clear and straightforward, using simple language and maintaining eye contact to enhance understanding. The use of memory aids, such as calendars and notes, can assist in keeping track of time and important information.

For those considering a career in healthcare, specialising in dementia care offers a rewarding opportunity to make a meaningful difference in the lives of individuals affected by this condition and their families. Click here to find healthcare roles with Coyle Homecare, so you can help individuals every day.

Related Jobs

We're here to help

As part of our committment to excellence, helping our candidates and clients get what they need quickly and easily is very important to us. If you need help or advice we're always just a phone call or email away.  Follow us on social media or join our newsletter for ongoing recruitment advice and guidance articles.  

Connect with us

© 2024 Coyle Personnel Ltd