8 Early Warning Signs of Dementia
Effectively recognizing the most-common early signs and symptoms of dementia is key to limit the disease’s negative effects – the sooner it is diagnosed, the more effectively treatment can help manage symptoms and improve quality of life.
1. Experiencing memory loss that affects day-to-day activities
It's normal to occasionally forget simple tasks on your schedule, appointments, or names. However, a common sign of dementia is forgetting things more frequently or immediately after learning them, which then negatively affects daily life.
2. Having trouble performing familiar tasks
Someone with dementia may have trouble remembering to complete tasks simple daily tasks, such as getting dressed or making dinner.
3. Becoming confused about locations or time
Everyone occasionally forgets what day it is, but those with dementia will sometimes experience extreme difficulty remembering where they are or even what year it is.
4. Experiencing trouble speaking or understanding
A person with dementia may forget commonly used words or use the incorrect word in conversation. They may also experience difficult understanding someone else’s speech.
5. Making poor decisions
Those living with dementia often experience changes in judgment that may put themselves at risk, such as walking into a busy street or ignoring signs of a serious medical issue.
6. Experiencing personality or behavioral changes
Those with dementia may experience personality changes and can become confused, suspicious, afraid, or unusually withdrawn. Severe mood swings are also common, such as fits of crying or rage for no particular reason.
7. Misplacing things
While we all misplace things from time to time, those with dementia may find themselves losing things more often or putting items where they don’t belong, such as clothing in the refrigerator or food in their bedroom closet.
8. Losing motivation or interest
Someone living with dementia may lose interest in hobbies they once enjoyed, withdraw from social interaction, and even lose motivation to engage in essential daily tasks, such as cleaning the house or bathing.
Courtyard at Longview: Specialized Care for Early-Stage Dementia
If your loved one is experiencing any of the early warning signs of dementia, we can help.
At the Courtyard at Longview, Christian Health’s specialized memory-care residence, those with early-stage dementia thrive in a community that prioritizes safety and comfort while promoting independence, activity, and social interaction.
“Choosing assisted-living memory care is a pivotal decision that can significantly improve quality of life for those suffering with memory loss,” said Pam Rooney, Administrator at Longview Premier Assisted Living. “Our care team provides a balance between independence, choice, and support. Often the stress of daily household chores and self-care tasks is overwhelming to those with memory impairment. Making a decision to provide your loved one with a welcoming, safe, and structured home, where they can engage with others and rediscover success and joy through specialized programming, is a decision far too often delayed.”
Courtyard at Longview offers special programs and an extensive calendar of fun and engaging activities and events to improve memory, ease anxiety, and bring residents out of their shell so that they are happier, brighter, and higher functioning.
Amenities and activities include:
- Mental stimulation, cognitive, and speech therapy to improve memory and language skills
- An art program to encourage residents’ creative side
- An on-staff chaplain to provide spiritual programming
- Special events and socials, including festive themed events such as a 1950s sock-hop, an outdoor luau, and holiday festivals
- Live entertainment, especially featuring music from residents’ eras
- Day trips, such as scenic drives to enjoy cherry blossoms in the spring or holiday lights in the winter and picnics in the park
- A warm, cozy dining room to promote socialization
- An enclosed courtyard to offer safe outside access
- A wireless roam-alert system to promote safe wandering in a secured environment
- A nurse-call system in each unit
- Regular staff rounds to engage residents and ensure safety
- Family update meetings to facilitate the open exchange of ideas between residents’ loved ones and the leadership at Courtyard
Our priority is ensuring your loved one enjoys an optimal quality of life so that you and your family rest assured that they are in excellent hands. “I take great pride in my role in fostering a positive atmosphere within our assisted living community so that residents and their loved ones can focus on what matters most,” said Pam.
If you think Courtyard at Longview is right for your loved one, please call Victoria Durante, Director of Admissions, at (201) 848-4303 or send an email to VDurante@ChristianHealthNJ.org.