Dementia symptoms: The warning sign in your speech you should never ignore
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The warning signs and early symptoms of dementia can vary from person to person, and depending on the form of dementia. One early symptom affects people’s speech and their ability to communicate: have you noticed this warning sign of dementia?
Dementia is the name given to a group of progressive brain disorders, affecting a person’s memory and eventually their ability to function.
More than 800,000 people in the UK have dementia, and the Alzheimer’s Society said on average, another is diagnosed with the life-changing condition every three minutes.
The biggest risk factor for developing dementia is age: one in six Britons over the age of 80 has the condition.
Do you know the earliest symptoms of dementia to look out for?
Symptoms of dementia in your speech
Do you ever find yourself tongue-tied and struggling to find the right word for something – you know the what-do-you-call-it?
It happens to everyone from time to time: a piece of vocabulary just vanishes from our minds, but for those with dementia it can happen increasingly often.
Dementia can affect the part of the brain controlling language, and can make communication more difficult.
Forgetting words for things can be an early symptom of frontotemporal dementia, a rarer form of dementia accounting for two percent of dementia diagnoses in the UK.
A person with dementia may start to forget pieces of vocabulary, and compensate by using words they do remember.
For example, a watch could become a ‘hand-clock’, a television a ‘picture-box’ or your gloves, your ‘hand-shoes’.
If you find yourself often unable to remember the right words, or struggling to find any words at all, or you’ve noticed a relative losing their grasp on vocabulary, it might be time to talk to a doctor.
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As time goes on, if a person loses their ability to communicate and they are in a care home setting, the Alzheimer’s Society offers support to help people.
Keeping a form with your personal information nearby is advisable, to help carers understand your needs and wishes.
The Alzheimer’s Society call this form the ‘This is Me’ form, for more information head to their website.
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