Reversible dementia is the type that resolves after the underlying cause has been identified and treated. At the first sign of cognitive decline, it’s essential to see a physician so a diagnosis can be made as soon as possible. Here are five reversible causes of dementia to look for in your senior loved one.
Bladder, pulmonary, and gastrointestinal infections can cause behaviors similar to those associated with dementia. Infections often cause fevers, and when the body’s temperature gets too high, confusion and cognitive decline can occur. Infections can also cause dehydration, which can lead to dementia-like behavior. Once the infection is appropriately treated, your loved one’s cognitive ability should return.
2. Brain Disorders
Brain disorders such as tumors (both malignant and benign), concussions, and increased intracranial pressure can all cause reversible dementia. These disorders can impair cerebral blood flow, and when this happens, reasoning skills and memory function may decrease.
If your loved one becomes forgetful, develops headaches or vision impairment, gets dizzy, or vomits upon awakening—especially if not accompanied by nausea—seek medical attention right away. Once brain disorders are diagnosed and treated, dementia-like symptoms may resolve.
Dementia can be challenging for seniors to manage, but they can maintain a higher quality of life with the help of professional dementia care. Oshkosh seniors can benefit greatly from the Cognitive Therapeutics Method (CTM), an activities-based program designed to promote cognitive health and delay the onset of dementia. CTM is included at no additional charge with any of the in-home care plans provided by Home Care Assistance.
Depression is often characterized by sadness, but it can also cause confusion, memory impairment, loss of appetite, and disinterest in grooming, dressing, and bathing. These signs are similar to those associated with dementia and need to be investigated.
Depression is a multifactorial illness, and while it can be effectively managed, it can take weeks or even months before your loved one’s symptoms resolve. Antidepressant medications may be helpful in reducing symptoms, but the physician may recommend that your loved one visit a mental health professional to augment treatment.
Caring for a loved one with dementia can be challenging, but compassionate help is available. If your senior loved one has been diagnosed with a serious condition and needs help with tasks like meal prep, transportation, bathing, and grooming, reach out to Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of elderly home care families can trust. We also offer comprehensive care for seniors with dementia, Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s.
4. Nutritional Deficiencies
Nutritional deficiencies can cause dementia-like symptoms, and a lack of vitamin B12 can be especially problematic. This nutrient is essential for optimal brain health, and when people don’t get enough of it, confusion and forgetfulness can occur.
5. Drug Side Effects
If your loved one takes certain prescription drugs, he or she may develop behavioral changes as a result of their side effects. Medications such as beta blockers, diuretics, antiarrhythmics, and corticosteroids can cause cognitive problems resembling those associated with dementia.
If you notice personality or mood changes while your loved one is taking medications, call the doctor, who may lower the dosage or discontinue the drug altogether. Once the drug is out of your loved one’s system, side effects and unusual behaviors may resolve. Never discontinue your loved one’s medications without approval from the physician, even if your loved one is exhibiting uncharacteristic behaviors.
A highly trained caregiver with experience in caring for seniors with dementia can be a fantastic resource for family members. Families looking for top-rated Oshkosh senior home care providers can reach out to Home Care Assistance. From respite care to specialized Alzheimer’s, dementia, stroke, and Parkinson’s care, there are many ways we can make life easier for seniors and their loved ones. For more information about our flexible, customizable home care plans, call one of our compassionate Care Managers today at (920) 573-6295.