seniors playing chessMany people know the names of common diseases but may lack specific knowledge about their causes and symptoms. Cognitive conditions like Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia can come on suddenly, before we have the chance to become informed about them.

Being knowledgeable can help us be more level-headed when dealing with these issues. Families can make the process easier for everyone involved where there is an understanding of what their loved one is going through, and what treatment options are available.

What Can Trigger Dementia?

According to the Mayo Clinic, dementia is caused by nerve damage or loss of cells and their connections in the brain. Depending on the area of the brain affected by the damage, dementia can affect people differently and cause varying symptoms. Dementia can be caused by:

  • Head injury
  • Brain tumors
  • Infections
  • Hormone disorders
  • Metabolic disorders
  • Nutritional deficiencies
  • Drug abuse

Cognitive & Psychological Signs

In addition to knowing what can cause dementia, it’s also important to know the symptoms. Early recognition that someone may be suffering from dementia can lead to a quicker diagnosis and better treatment.

Common signs and symptoms of dementia can be seen in either cognitive or psychological changes. Some of the cognitive changes include, but are not limited to:

  • Memory loss
  • Difficulty communicating
  • Difficulty with reasoning and problem solving
  • Confusion and disorientation
  • Difficulty planning and organizing

Psychological symptoms may include:

  • Personality changes
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Paranoia
  • Agitation

If you notice these symptoms or recall a situation that matches one of the causes, bring your loved one to see a doctor. Identifying the cause as soon as possible can help treat certain conditions before they reach an irreversible point.  
West Hartford Health & Rehabilitation Center specializes in dementia care in a safe and comforting environment. If your loved one has been diagnosed with a type of cognitive disease, contact us to learn more about the admissions process.