Your parent has always been an organized, punctual and conscientious individual; they’re diligent in paying their bills on time, they always arrive at least 10 minutes early to events and their hair, clothing and make-up are never out of place.
As they’ve aged, though, have you noticed changes in their appearance and behavior? Maybe your dad hasn’t been as on top of the bills as he used to be or maybe your mom has struggled to bathe, dress and arrive to appointments on time. Changes like these may be early signs of dementia that require memory care.
When is Memory Care Necessary for Your Parent?
Seeing your parent’s health decline like this is heartbreaking and scary if you don’t know what’s happening. That’s why it’s important to familiarize yourself with the early signs indicating that your parent needs memory care:
- Confusion and Disorientation. Does your parent seem confused when they’re out in public, struggling to navigate to where they want to go? Maybe this confusion has escalated to the point where your mom or dad has run a stop sign or red light, forgetting simple road rules. These behaviors, plus the act of wandering off and not knowing where they are, indicate your loved one may be suffering from dementia.
- Declines in Hygiene & Personal Care. If your parent has always been meticulous about their physical appearance and health, it should be clear if something is off. They may not bathe, do their hair or dress for the day like they used to. You may also notice your parent losing weight or looking weak. This is because people with dementia lose their ability to shop for, prepare and eat nutritious meals like they used to.
- Apprehension about Doing Everyday Activities. Is your mom or dad known for being incredibly stubborn and ferociously independent? If so, look out for apprehension around tasks they used to do on their own. Maybe they aren’t as keen to driving themselves places or they seem to struggle with chores like laundry and mowing the lawn. This apprehension and additional agitation about not being able to do these activities the same way they used to may be an indicator that your parent is struggling with dementia.
- Increased Forgetfulness. Misplacing their keys once in a while or forgetting a single appointment doesn’t automatically mean your parent has memory loss. However, if your mom or dad is constantly forgetting dates, events, appointments or personal information, this may be an early sign of dementia.
- Increased Isolation. When was the last time your mom or dad spent time with their siblings or friends? Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia can be incredibly isolating and make socializing more difficult. If your parent was always the life of the party with a healthy social life but now no longer spends time with their friends and loved ones, it could be a sign of dementia.
- Falls and Injuries. People with dementia tend to experience more falls or injuries because they struggle to remember where a staircase ends or where they put down certain items like laundry baskets. Disorientation can also cause them to cross busy streets without looking or away from crosswalks that are meant to guide them. If your parent is falling more or getting into more accidents as a result of disorientation and memory loss, they may require memory care to help.
- Mood Swings. You aren’t the only one noticing changes in your parent’s behavior; in fact, they’re noticing these changes too, and are terrified by them. Not understanding what is happening to them can make them feel agitated, scared and sad. They may even lash out in frustration. If you’ve noticed these types of mood swings alongside some of these other signs, it may be time for your loved one to seek memory care.
If your parent is exhibiting any or all of these symptoms, it’s important that you urge them to seek medical attention immediately. Their doctor can diagnosis them if they are, in fact, suffering from Alzheimer’s disease or another form of dementia.
Get Your Loved One Compassionate Memory Care at Garden Plaza of Florissant
Your parent’s Alzheimer’s disease or dementia diagnosis doesn’t mean they still can’t live a fulfilling and happy life. With the right memory care, your parent can continue to socialize, eat healthy and participate in activities and events designed to promote healthy cognitive function.
At Garden Plaza of Florissant, we’re dedicated to keeping your loved one connected to their community and living the life they love, despite their dementia. At our new memory care facility, you can rest assured that your parent will be well taken care of and able to continue living a healthy, safe and social lifestyle.
Contact our team today to learn more about our memory care services at Garden Plaza of Florissant.