Dementia symptoms: 7 early signs you might develop the condition

Worried about developing dementia in later life? These are the early symptoms to watch out for.

Have you ever thought of the early symptoms of dementia? Here are some to look out for:

1. Being repetitive

Has someone asked you the same question several times during one conversation? Or told you the same biographical detail every time you’ve met? Or have they begun to repeat daily tasks unnecessarily, like making the bed or brushing their teeth? They could be showing signs of dementia.

2. Loss of sense of direction

Losing your sense of direction and spatial awareness is common in dementia patients, who often end up being unable to recognise landmarks, and things like the way home, or which house they live in.

3. Listlessness

Feeling apathetic about spending time with the people you love, or hobbies and activities that you’ve always been interested in doing, can indicate the onset of dementia.

4. Short-term memory struggles

Being able to vividly remember events from decades ago, but struggling to remember what you had for lunch, can be an early sign of dementia. As can regularly forgetting why you entered a room, or where you left your keys (although these are not sure-fire signs of dementia, as of course, we all lose our keys from time to time).

5. Trouble following stories

If someone is struggling to follow the plot of a programme they usually enjoy, or can’t recognise how a film has been developing, they may be exhibiting dementia-like symptoms.

6. Communication and confusion

Showing signs of confusion – from forgetting faces and names of people you know well, to regularly misplacing things – may indicate the early stages of dementia. Communication issues are also a key problem, so a potential sufferer could find it difficult to think of the right word to use in a sentence, or are unable to verbally express how they are feeling or thinking, which can be very frustrating.

7. Mood swings

Dementia can affect a person’s ability to judge a situation, so someone who might usually be considered a wallflower, may suddenly start behaving in a much more outgoing, in-your-face way, while depression can also be a key early sign of the condition.

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