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5 Signs You're Getting Dementia

The symptoms can be subtle and not always easy to spot.

Dementia refers to more than 100 conditions related to memory and cognition that prevent a person from functioning normally; Alzheimer's disease is probably the most well-known. Read on to discover five of the most common signs of dementia. Read on—and to ensure your health and the health of others, don't miss these Sure Signs You Have "Long" COVID and May Not Even Know It.


Memory Loss

Memory Disorder

Someone with dementia may experience memory loss related to recent or important events, names and places, where they left certain objects, and other new information. This is more severe or frequent than the forgetfulness that may happen with normal aging, in which a person might temporarily or occasionally forget a name or where their keys are sitting. "Memory problems are typically one of the first signs of cognitive impairment related to Alzheimer's disease," says the National Institutes on Aging.


Difficulty Communicating

Comforting Senior Husband Suffering With Dementia

A common early sign of dementia is the impaired ability to communicate. The affected person might have trouble finding the right words or finishing sentences and following directions or conversations. 


Getting Lost

Senior woman with face mask outdoors with shopping, corona virus and quarantine concept.

A person with dementia may become lost in places that were previously familiar, like in their own neighborhood or on a frequently driven route. They may forget how they got there and how to return home.


Coordination Problems

Elderly stroke, Asian older woman suffer fall.

Dementia may impair coordination or visual/spatial relations, causing an affected person to have trouble walking or maintaining motor skills. According to the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention, that can include having more difficulty with balance or judging distance, tripping over things at home, or spilling or dropping things more often.

RELATED: 5 Ways to Prevent Dementia, Says Dr. Sanjay Gupta


Difficulty With Complex or Familiar Tasks

Portrait of a worried mature woman having problems with her finances

A person with dementia may have trouble with reading, writing or complex mental tasks like balancing a checkbook, following directions, or making calculations. Familiar tasks, like paying bills or cooking recipes used for years, may become difficult, says the CDC. Contact a medical professional if you feel this is happening to you or someone you love, get vaccinated when it becomes available to you, and to stay safe, don't visit any of these 35 Places You're Most Likely to Catch COVID.

Michael Martin
Michael Martin is a New York City-based writer and editor whose health and lifestyle content has also been published on Beachbody and Openfit. A contributing writer for Eat This, Not That!, he has also been published in New York, Architectural Digest, Interview, and many others. Read more about Michael