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How to Spot the Telltale Signs of Early Onset Dementia in a Spouse

Have you noticed a change? It may be subtle, but it’s there. Here’s a guide for how to spot the telltale signs of early onset dementia in your spouse.

Nobody knows your partner better than you. But what happens when they stop acting like themselves?

Over the course of a marriage, a lot of things can change. Some of these changes are physical and others emotional. The worst changes happen when your partner’s health begins to diminish.

The scariest thing is if you start to suspect your husband or wife is showing signs of early onset dementia.

When someone is diagnosed with dementia, there’s no turning back. The best thing you can do is spot your partner’s early losses of cognitive ability so you can make the most of their remaining health.

However, it’s not always easy to diagnose dementia. A lot of the warning signs are also typical symptoms of aging. Everyone becomes a bit more absent-minded as they grow older.

But you know your partner inside and out, and if you sense there’s something seriously wrong, you could be right.

Here’s a guide for spotting the telltale signs of early onset dementia in your spouse.

Their Memory Is Fading

You’ve had a long, happy marriage with your partner. The last thing you want to happen is for them to forget all those good times. However, if you find them being increasingly absent-minded they may be suffering from dementia.

More often than not, memory loss first affects short term memory. They may still easily recall things from decades ago. But they have trouble remembering what they did yesterday.

Changes Of Scenery Are Confusing

Your spouse is having a difficult time transitioning to situations outside of their normal routine. Unfamiliar locations or large crowds can exacerbate one’s dementia symptoms.

A big warning sign for early onset dementia is if your partner is becoming increasingly overwhelmed in these types of situations.

They Practice Poor Judgement

Dementia affects the part of the brain that is able to process decision making. If your spouse is suffering from early onset dementia, they may suddenly begin making very ‘unlike them’ choices.

This can be seen in their handling of finances or even how they dress. If it’s cold out and your partner is not wearing the right clothing, they may be in trouble.

Easy Everyday Tasks Are Forgotten

You most likely have a typical routine with your spouse. They set the table, you cook dinner. You grocery shop, they put the groceries away. You’ve been doing things this way for years.

So when your partner suddenly begins to forget those regular tasks, you should become concerned. If they aren’t setting the dinner table because they forgot to, rather than they don’t want to, it’s time to see the doctor.

Uncharacteristic Mood Swings

You know exactly what will set your partner off. You’ve been through fights over the years but are always able to talk things out. Another warning sign for early onset dementia is if your spouse is getting uncharacteristically angry at random things.

Their brain isn’t able to process what is making them upset. They’ll sometimes take that confusion out on you. You can’t take it personally, only try to be patient and supportive.

A Loss Of Ambition

If your go-getter spouse is suddenly lazy and uninspired, then something might be seriously wrong with them. A lot of people tend to slow down when they get older. But early onset dementia can bring that change almost overnight.

This is especially troubling for early onset patients since they are most likely still in the workforce. This terrible disease could lead to them losing their job.

They Can’t Follow A Story

You and your partner probably have your go-to TV shows you watch together. Couples who watch regular programming side by side have healthier relationships. But are you finding it more and more difficult to discuss the show afterward?

The lack of ability to follow a story is another major warning sign. Everyone appreciates a recap before a new episode to remind them where the story left off. But people with dementia may not be able to recall what happened in the previous scene.

Difficulty Using Regular Language

This warning sign is one of the first you may notice. Is your partner forgetting typical words? You may find that sometimes they’ll stop in the middle of a sentence, unsure what to say next.

This is especially troubling when they begin to forget people’s names. You may find them referring to longtime friends as “that guy” or “that girl”.

They’ve Become Hoarders

Hoarding is a big warning sign for a number of different mental issues. For people suffering from dementia, this isn’t a factor of not wanting to throw things away. It’s simply that they buy too many of the same item.

People with dementia will forget they bought something and go to the store to get it. All of a sudden, there are twenty rolls of toilet paper in the bathroom closet.

They’re Repetitive

This warning sign can be one of the most straining on partners. Your spouse begins to repeat the same stories over and over again. You could have just had a conversation an hour ago and then they bring up the issue yet again.

This can be depressing and frustrating for both of you. That’s why it’s important to get your partner diagnosed as soon as possible.

For more information read the article on this site to learn more about what happens after a diagnosis.

Get Ahead Of Early Onset Dementia

The earlier your partner can be diagnosed, the more time you’ll have together. Look for these signs of early onset dementia before it’s too late.

Worried about you or your partner’s health? For more helpful articles check out this link.