Frequently Observed Changes

  • Memory:
    • forgetting appointments or holidays
    • not taking medication
    • repeating self
    • misplacing items and not being able to retrace  steps
    • forgetting to pay bills 
  • Disorientation:
    • unsure of time of day, date or season
    • increased focus on clocks and time
    • unsure how they "got somewhere"
  • Difficulty with familiar daily tasks:
    • operating the oven, microwave, remote control
    • not cooking as much-possibly burning items
    • trouble managing dog or cat care
    • saying "my cell phone isn't working" or "this computer is broken"
    • throwing or giving away things they used to enjoy: knitting, puzzles, computer, books, tools
  • Word finding or writing changes:
    • uses the wrong name for something
    • can't find the right word in conversation
    • writing less legibly or with fewer words
    • taking longer to process information or to answer questions
  • Planning and problem solving changes:
    • not able to follow a recipe or instructions
    • difficulty with balancing a checkbook or paying bills
    • missing medication or appointments
    • often late - having difficulty organizing their routine
    • May seem like they are procrastinating more
  • Withdrawing from social activities and family:
    • reading less
    • not cooking as much
    • staying home more often
    • missing family functions
    • not participating in hobbies
    • making excuses for not doing things:
      • "oh I don't feel like it"
      • "it just doesn't interest me anymore"
      • "that hasn't been working for quite a while" 
      • "I don't really care about the conversation at those lunches anymore"
  • Decreased judgment
    • dressing in same clothes
    • appearing more disheveled
    • making more purchases on-line or through TV advertising
    • sending money through mail or phone  marketing