It is difficult to self-diagnose the need for care for various reasons. An individual may have an undiagnosed medical condition, it could be due to a range of illnesses from the early stages of Alzheimer’s, Dementia, Parkinson’s or due to any other age-related concerns. There are certainly red flags, usually identified by family members, friends, neighbours or medically trained professionals.
Look out for these possible evidential signs:
- Appearance and Hygiene e.g. personal presentation, oral hygiene, personal hygiene, unexplained weight loss.
- Domestic Conditions e.g. accumulation of dust and dirt, the build-up of laundry, unsanitised kitchens and bathrooms, an unmaintained garden.
- Sociability e.g. unexplained disinterest in previously enjoyed hobbies, clubs and societies, visits to close friends, shopping, holidays, dinner parties etc.
- Driving e.g. loss of confidence, erratic vehicle manoeuvring, incidents of minor accidents, damage to bodywork, scratches to the paintwork.
Look out for these personal signs:
- Frequently forgetting key dates, such as appointments or relatives’ birthdays.
- Asking for things or for information over and over again.
- An increasing reliance on memory aids or family member support.
- Forgetting what happened earlier in the day.
- Getting lost or wandering.
- Difficulties concentrating.
- Problems following conversations or TV programmes.
- Struggling to follow a plan or work with numbers, for example following a recipe or paying a bill.
- Difficulties completing familiar tasks, such as driving to the shops or to work.
- Forgetting where they are, or how they got there.
- Lack of understanding of dates, seasons or time.
- Difficulties judging distance, colour or contrast.
- Difficulties reading.
- Beginning to have trouble following or joining in a conversation.
- Struggling with vocabulary, such as finding the right word.
- Forgetting the names of family and friends, or of everyday objects.
- Losing things and being unable to retrace where they left them.
- Accusing others of moving or taking items.
- Poor judgement around money, for example, signing up to a door-to-door sales pitch.
- Forgetting to pay bills.
- Confusion or paranoia.
- Loss of motivation.
- Mood changes.
- Becoming easily upset.
- Becoming aggressive.
If you, or somebody close to you, is concerned about any of these signs it is important to arrange an appointment with your GP as soon as you are able. For further information on a variety of conditions we would recommend signposting you to the NHS Choices website and enter the name of the condition you may suspect is closest to the symptoms being displayed.
Alternatively, you may contact us today for an informal chat.