There are initial red flags of dementia that adult children should be able to discern about their aging parents. When an aged parent begins to repeat themselves, and loses verbal skills, that is, unable to retrieve the correct word, these are signs that a parent is declining cognitively. The first course of action should be a physical work-up with a primary care physician, checking what medications a parent is taking, are they taking them, and a cognitive assessment.
If the parent is over 85 years old, there is a 1 in 3 chance that they will develop some form of dementia. As the mental abilities continue to decline, the parent may exhibit poor household cleanliness, an inability to bathe or dress themselves, and forget to pay bills. This is when the next level of action should be considered.
Advanced directives should be checked and updated, and of course the parent should be consulted as to what they want as long as they are able to communicate their wishes. Next, 24/7 care may be in order for the aging parent. Will it be skilled nursing care, a nursing home, home health care that can provide round-the-clock assistance? These are all aspects of dementia care that need to be considered, as well as the cost factor.
Dementia is a sad reality for family, and it is never an easy path for adult children to face to see their beloved parent decline. Don’t ignore the early warning signs.
- 1The person you care for is going through serious changes.
- 2This is can be an extremely costly process as it gets worse.
- 3Try to keep the person’s individuals feelings in mind as much as possible when it comes to their comfort.
Do you need help in the area of Dementia Care? Check out this available resource: Fit Minds Family Caregiver Program