More Red Flags

Blog#5

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has a helpful infographic entitled “10 Warning Signs of Alzheimer’s”. These further represent the red flags of dementia. Although some of these signs and symptoms can occur in other conditions, as more of these symptoms occur, they point to changes in cognitive abilities and merit attention and assessment.

Briefly, these signs include:

1. Memory loss that disrupts daily life – especially short-term memory.

2. Challenges in planning or solving problems for tasks once simple.

3. Difficulty completing familiar tasks at home – cooking, driving, etc.

4. Confusion with time or place – losing track of dates.

5. Trouble understanding images and spatial relations.

6. New problems with words in speaking or writing.

7. Misplacing things and losing the ability to retrace steps.

8. Decreased or poor judgment – victims of a scam, poor money management.

9. Withdrawal from work or social activities.

10.Changes in mood and personality – fearful or suspicious.

Many of these behaviors are dealt with in Lest We Forget. Although they often are the “red flags” of cognitive impairment, they usually continue through the course of a dementing illness. They may appear mild at the outset but will likely worsen over time.

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